Friday, November 4, 2011

Fall harvests

I'm a pumpkin carving master.
We have a few hardy crops in the ground that are continuing to produce tasty fresh food.
The pumpkins of course have been a fun harvest.  They are indeed edible, I found that really the texture is the only thing that's different between my random pumpkins and the nice "pie pumpkin" I got from the store.  And texture can be amended with judicious applications of the immersion blender.  So, two thumbs up for the random pumpkin experiment.  We got a few carving pumpkins out of the deal and more pumpkins than we'll be able to eat.  They are sitting on the porch looking festive right now.  Snow is forecasted for next week though, so I need to bring them in if we intend to try and eat any this winter.

Dave is a pumpkin pie master.

I tried something last night that was pretty tasty. I roasted the usual sweet potatoes for Rowen, with some of the pumpkin flesh I had saved from carving, and then mashed them together with the usual butter/milk/spices.  Pretty good.  Hard to tell that it was sweet potatoes and pumpkin mixed together. Considering the lack of sweet potatoes to be found this fall, that will help stretch them a little bit.  On a related note, I'll be figuring out how to grow sweet potatoes this winter. :-D
The first of three pumpkin harvests.

The swiss chard is still doing fine, nights below freezing don't bother it much.  It's the brightest green you can imagine, my community garden folks are jealous, I can tell.  They're envious of my tasty greens as they hoe under their sad bedraggled tomato vines. :-D

The turnips are still going. I have those buffered with piles of leaves and covered with row cover, just to help keep the ground from freezing around them.  Now, if I could just find a way of cooking/preserving them that the boys like.  One of my friends tried a turnip pickle that turned out ok...

Rowen and I picked the last of the carrots yesterday.  He was eating them dirt and all, before we even left the garden.  He usually doesn't like carrots, so that was a win.  Yay for frost sweetened carrots.We only pulled a half a pound or so out, but that's not bad considering the complete lack of attention I gave these things.  I do that every year.  Carrots take sooo long to germinate, and then they are hard to keep alive, and then they grow sooooo slowly, that I'm always sure they're going to kick the bucket before making any roots, so I give up on them. Then along comes November and I'm digging up the tastiest carrots I've ever eaten, and wondering why I didn't try just a little harder in July to get the carrot bed weeded and watered.

Kohlrabi is also still producing.  They definitely slow down once we get past fall equinox, but they withstand quite a bit of cold without much fuss from me. Plus, they look like alien saucers, which I love.

I found a bit of oregano under the leaves in the summer herb patch, doing well enough that I harvested a handful and put it in some water in the kitchen.  We ate some on the roasted veggies last night. Mmmm fresh herbs in November. Not too shabby.

Still to come: 3 small heads of purple cabbage, that I'm giving every last day I can before harvesting them.  They were the heads buried under the pumpkin vines. They are still alive because I made a bridge for the vines to climb, but they were definitely slowed because of the shade.  I'm more likely to eat them in Nov than I was in July when the other cabbages matured, so it's a good thing I think.