Saturday, November 14, 2015

Fall Harvest

Hello! I grumbled earlier in the growing season that the cool, cloudy July weather hurt my warm weather crops. Oh, I eventually got tomatoes and peppers, but not as many as usual. 

Fall crops have been another matter. We've had a number of mild, sunny days, coupled with enough rain to help things along. The offerings at the local farmer's market seem to be especially lush this year, and I've been happily loading up on kale, Brussel sprouts, cauliflower and broccoli. I do miss the absence of local tomatoes, but I might as well take advantage of what's still out there. 

I did a little fall harvesting of my own earlier in the week:

A nice basketful of greens: kale, collards, mustard greens and broccoli raab. The last green listed was sauteed with garlic in olive oil and served over pasta. The other greens were sauteed with onion and a bit of chopped ham, then steamed with cornmeal dumplings. Good eating both meals! 

Yes, I mentioned buying kale at the farmer's market even though I grow it at home as well. Greens cook down quite a bit in the cooking process, so you need to start out with a lot in your pot. I don't have a big enough garden to grow all that I use in my cooking (in fact, I did add some farmer's market kale to that ham/cornmeal dumpling dinner).  I feel it's still worthwhile to grow what I can, though - I can pick my greens at a younger, more tender stage, and my homegrown organic greens are certainly cheaper than buying organic greens. 

And if you noticed the two bowls lurking behind the basket, they contain the tomatoes I picked as well. I'd been concerned about a possible killing frost coming up, so I picked what could be saved and brought them indoors to continue ripening. 

We were spared that killing frost, at least where I live, but it was still chilly enough at night to make the tomato plants miserable. The greens are still fine, so I might be able to do another picking before winter settles in for good and the snow buries the garden. 

Nothing like fresh, locally-grown produce, no matter what the season!

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