Harvest Monday May 30, 2016

Welcome to Harvest Monday, where we celebrate all things harvest related. We continue to enjoy the lettuce harvests here, which is a good thing because a lot of it is ready to eat! I cut one head of Smile last week for tacos. Smile is a green oak leaf lettuce I got from Adaptive Seeds, but the leaves have a buttery feel almost like a butterhead lettuce.

Smile lettuce

Smile lettuce

I also cut all three of the Australian Yellow lettuce plants so my wife could make wilted lettuce salad. Australian Yellow looks much like a Black Seeded Simpson, except it does have a little more charteuse color to it. The leaves are big and tender, and perfect for wilting or any other use. I’ve got some more of it started and I will test its heat tolerance with a June planting. I also started some crisphead types (Cardinale, Sierra, Jester, Anuenue, Unicum) which usually do well here when planted in early summer. There was enough of that lettuce for us to enjoy two meals of it.

Australian Yellow lettuce

Australian Yellow lettuce

The last lettuce I cut was the wildly-colored Pele from Wild Garden Seeds. This is my first time growing this short romaine, but it won’t likely be my last. It’s beautiful to look at, and tasty in the salad bowl with large leaves that have a crunch midrib. The one in the below photo weighed right at 10 ounces, and would have likely gotten bigger if I had left it to grow longer. I’ll share two photos of it since neither pic does it justice on their own. WGS calls it a ‘short leaf’ romaine but it got tall enough that the cold frame lid was scrunching down on the leaves enough to break them.

Pele lettuce

Pele lettuce

Pele lettuce side view

Pele lettuce side view

Another first here last week was the first kohlrabi. Konan is a 2016 AAS Winner, and was bred by Bejo Seeds, who also bred the Kossak and Kolibri varieties. The one in the below photo weighed a little over five ounces after trimming the leaves, and we enjoyed eating it raw so we could get the full benefit of the mild flavor. Slugs have eaten on the leaves but so far haven’t done any damage to the rest of the plants.

Konan kohlrabi

Konan kohlrabi

A few days later another Konan was joined by the first Kolibri of the season. The Konan was 6.6 ounces and the Kolibri weighed 4.7 ounces. I also have Winner planted in the same cold frame bed, but it is not quite ready to harvest. Konan has definitely won me over with not only its earliness but also its mild and crunchy taste. These two in the below photo wound up in a slaw I whipped up, using the scallion as well. The kohlrabi was tender enough I used it skin and all.

Kolibri and Konan kohlrabies

Kolibri and Konan kohlrabies

The snow and snap peas are coming on strong now. I made several pickings of them, the largest of which is shown below. Oregon Sugar Pod 2 has been the most prolific, but it’s not really a fair comparison since I had germination problems with Sugar Ann and Avalanche. I plan to sow all three again for a fall crop, where germination is usually not a problem for me. These wound up in a stir fry my wife cooked last night.

harvest of snow peas and snap peas

harvest of snow peas and snap peas

I cut two of the Tokyo Bekana loose headed cabbages on Saturday so I could make a test batch of kimchi. Since I want to make it less spicy than most I have tasted, I settled on making a so-called white kimchi (aka Baek kimchi), using the basic kimchi technique outlined in The Art of Fermentation by Sandor Katz. Last night I chopped the cabbage along with daikon radish and carrot and soaked the veggies overnight in a 5% brine solution. Then I will drain and taste this morning, rinsing if it’s too salty. I have chosen to not add hot peppers to mine this first time, and if I like the recipe I can make it again with Napa cabbage and add a few hot peppers to suit my tastes. After brining, I will add ginger, garlic and a few sliced scallions and pack into a quart jar. It takes about 2 lb/900g of veggies to fill a quart jar, so my 20 ounces of Bekana should be just about right when the the rest of the ingredients are added. You can see in the below photo that the slugs have already dined on the cabbage, so maybe I should call this batch Wonky Kimchi!

Tokyo Bekana cabbage

Tokyo Bekana cabbage

My wife has been harvesting our cherries as they ripen. She accumulated enough to make a cobbler for us. The trees are not in a great location, and have never really taken off, but they do give us a few cherries every year. We are planning our annual trip to Farview Orchards this week to stock up the freezer with both sweet and tart cherries.

pitted North Star pie cherries

pitted North Star pie cherries

Cherry Cobbler

Cherry Cobbler

And last but never least, we made the final cutting of asparagus on Saturday. Well, my wife made it, and it brought the yearly total up to a bit over 30 pounds. This was less than the 35 pounds we got last year, but still a lot of asparagus for the two of us to enjoy, and enjoy it we have! We froze a little bit for use later on, but most of it we consumed as it came in. Now it’s time to finish mulching the beds, and apply a little more fertilizer to give the ferns plenty of nutrients to grow and replenish the roots for next year’s crop.

Harvest Monday is a day to show off your harvests, how you are saving your harvest, or how you are using your harvest. If you have a harvest you want to share, add your name and blog link to Mr Linky below. And be sure and check out what everyone is harvesting!

 



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20 Responses to Harvest Monday May 30, 2016

  1. Mark Willis says:

    Lettuce is evidently the IN THING, both here and at your place! Very envious of the Cherry Cobbler too…

  2. Erin says:

    Nice work! I haven’t seen that lettuce around, I’ll keep an eye out for seeds at the end of winter.
    Have you ever made a coleslaw with your kohlrabi? I’ve heard it can be good but I’m yet to try it at all!
    Erin recently posted…Harvest MondayMy Profile

    • Dave says:

      I mixed it with lime juice, cilantro and chopped scallion to make a slaw. I also like it made with sesame oil and rice vinegar.

      • Erin says:

        Thanks Dave! I don’t know why my brain read salad up there ^ instead of slaw!
        Do you ever use a mayonnaise with yours? I just discovered I like red cabbage and apple slaw with mayo but I’ve never tried one without it
        Erin recently posted…Harvest MondayMy Profile

  3. Will - Eight Gate Farm - NH says:

    Wow, just look at that lettuce. It’s terrific. I can’t believe you have cherries to pick. Our trees just finished flowering!

  4. Thanks for sharing all the information about different varieties of lettuce and the like. Though growing conditions are different, you give us a headstart and alert us to winners. What a treat–homegrown cherries and more at an orchard nearby! Each region has its treasures. Thanks again for hosting Harvest Monday.

  5. Jennifer says:

    Those lettuces are STUNNING! Maybe I’ll try for a more diverse fall lettuce crop. And how wonderful to have cherries!
    Jennifer recently posted…~ Harvest Monday: May 30, 2016 ~My Profile

  6. Phuong says:

    Wow, you’re still getting fantastic spring crops even though it’s moving inexorably towards summer. With all the rain this year, the slug population has exploded. They’re everywhere. Just like the flea beetles.

    I’m off to plant 38 pepper plants this morning!
    Phuong recently posted…Around the Garden and Tomatoes in BloomMy Profile

  7. Susie says:

    Those cherries look scrumptious, wish I had some right now. They are so red (maybe it’s just the photo) they almost look like those jarred maraschino cherries.

    And congrats on all that wonderful lettuce, you certainly have been working hard.
    Susie recently posted…Harvest Monday: May 30, 2016My Profile

  8. Julie says:

    Beautiful lettuce and so many different varieties! Those cherries look fabulous especially in a cobbler. I would love to grow cherries, but I guess I’m not in a good climate for them. I also had really low germination rates for sugar ann peas this year too.
    Julie recently posted…Harvest Monday 5/30/16My Profile

    • Dave says:

      I’ve got some new seed for the peas, and the fall crop should go better since the soil will be warm.

  9. Michelle says:

    I think you won’t even see the wonkiness of the cabbage in the finished kimchi and it will be interesting to see how it comes out with the Tokyo Bekana. Oh cherries, those are beautiful! They are one of my favorite fruits, maybe my #1 favorite. We’ve been enjoying them from the farmer’s market lately, but only the sweet varieties, no one around here grows tart cherries.
    Michelle recently posted…Harvest Monday – May 30, 2016My Profile

    • Dave says:

      I’m just hoping I got all the slugs out of the cabbage! Though I am sure they wouldn’t have survived the brining.

  10. Margaret says:

    Look at the Pele lettuce – gorgeous! And yum to cherry cobbler – I was concerned that all of our temperature swings may have put the kibosh on our cherry harvest, but it looks like we will be harvesting some after all. I had better put that netting up, though, otherwise the birds will be the ones enjoying them!
    Margaret recently posted…Harvest Monday – May 30, 2016My Profile

  11. Mike R says:

    The Pele lettuce is spectacular. I can see growing it as much for the looks as the taste.
    Mike R recently posted…OK this is more like itMy Profile

  12. Gosh, cherries are a real luxury, I can’t remember the last time I ate any.

    Mm, lovely lettuces again, I’ve had a couple of small harvests from mine, picking individual leaves off the transplants. Whether any will survive the slugs, wind and rain to produce any new growth is another matter.
    Lou@rainbowchard recently posted…Harvest Monday, slug control, and some allotment picsMy Profile

  13. I’ve never had a kohlrabi, I’ve even never seen it at the shops either here in Belgium. Is it comparable to other vegetables, taste-wise?
    Lotte from Mrs Simple Life recently posted…Tuindagboek: week 21 + Harvest MondayMy Profile

    • Dave says:

      I think kohlrabi tastes like a very mild turnip when raw. It has a bit more flavor when roasted, but I usually eat it raw or use it to make kraut or kohlrabi pickles.

  14. Thanks Dave, I might give it a try next year
    Lotte from Mrs Simple Life recently posted…Tuindagboek: week 21 + Harvest MondayMy Profile

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