Monday, November 11, 2019

Harvest Monday - 11 November 2019

We had several hard frosts last week, where the top layer of the soil froze at night. But it "defrosted" during the day. They were also forecasting snow for the latter part of the week. It didn't materialize, but I couldn't know that, so I harvested all the remaining root vegetables.

I took all the remaining "Mokum" carrots, an Amsterdam type, that were spring-planted.

Mokum carrots

As well as the "Yaya" carrots, a Nantes type, that were also spring-planted.

Yaya carrots
I decided I'm completely sold on pelletized carrot seeds. They are so much easier to handle, and no thinning required. Sure, not all germinate, and you have to use up all the seeds in one season, but it is totally worth it to me. I wish more varieties were available in pelletized form.

All the remaining leeks were picked. They never really got big this year, but at least the voles left them alone, so we got a good harvest of this useful vegetable.

Carentan leeks
I also went to chop down the cauliflower plants, which had gotten very big but produced no heads, I thought. So I was pleasantly surprised to find this when pulling them apart for the compost. They are only tennis-ball sized, but it made for a very nice side dish that night.

Snowball Self-blanching cauliflower
Needless to say, The Kitchen Goddess had a very busy day when all the above came in. She kept some of the leeks out for cock-a-leekie soup (yum!), froze the rest, and froze all the carrots. She got so into it she forgot to leave some out for fresh eating! Not only that, but I discovered all the Red Norland potatoes in the bin in the cellar had started to sprout, only three months after harvest. So she sliced them, dipped them in lemon juice, blanched them, and dehydrated them in the oven. They will be very useful in the coming winter months.

With that, the garden is bare. I bid it goodnight, and thanked it for its service. Our freezers and cupboards are full. Despite the usual setbacks, it was a pretty good year. I hope it was for you too! So no more Harvest Monday posts this year. Thanks for reading, and for your comments over the year. And a big round of applause, please, for our host, the talented Dave, at

Monday, November 4, 2019

Harvest Monday - 4 November 2019

This past weekend we had frosts over every night. Just touching freezing, but enough to kill the tender plants. Anticipating this, I harvested everything I thought was at risk.

I took all the kale. Some of this I intentionally planted, others were what was left from the salad mixes I planted in spring.

I took all the chard. This, too, was from the salad mixes.

I harvested herbs for drying. Below is parsley, sage, oregano, and thyme. Not quite like the song lyrics! We do have rosemary, but we overwinter the plant and thus have a constant fresh supply.

I also took the remaining cilantro.

It looks like a lot, but it all went into one dish: Cilantro and Serrano Pepper Mexican Rice. The article containing the recipe has a lot of hype to scroll through, and I think it calls for too much garlic, but it turned out quite good. Here it is, served with baked boneless chicken breast dusted with our smoked chile powder. A double dose of spiciness!

I also picked some carrots. They're funny looking, but really tasty.

Mokum carrots
And I picked all the useful apples from our late-maturing Granny Smith (I think!) tree. The rest (just as many) were thrown out into the woods for the critters to enjoy. I have to say that it is hard to grow apples using organic principles. You have to lower your standards quite a bit.

That's all for this week. Thanks for reading, and thanks as always to Dave at for hosting Harvest Monday.

 With hard frost on the way, it will be a busy week getting ready for winter and doing the final harvests of the year.