Welcome to Harvest Monday, where we celebrate all things harvest related. I’ll start off with the one of the smallest things we grow here. Our one Cherry Red currant bush is loaded with currants this year. Though they are small in size, they make up for it in sheer numbers! So far we have been enjoying them on our breakfast muesli, and I made an apple and currant crisp one night for a dessert treat. When most are ripe I’ll do a mass harvest and freeze some for later use.
The lettuce I planted in the cold frame beds is getting a little long in the tooth, with maybe half of the plants starting to bolt. One not bolting yet is the Tall Oaks Mix. I made a cutting of it last week which we used in various salads.
The visually striking Pele lettuce was starting to bolt, so I cut the last remaining plants. It and the Tall Oaks came from Wild Garden Seeds, and I have really enjoyed both of these new lettuce varieties. They’ll no doubt be back for a fall planting.
I pulled more of the kohlrabi from the cold frame bed. Konan and Kolibri continue to give us nice sized, tender and crisp kohlrabies. A couple of those in the below photo made a nice raw side dish. We usually make a yogurt dipping sauce for kohlrabi, but this time we skipped it so we could let the flavor of the kohlrabi shine.
I used the other three kohlrabies to make a quart jar of kohlrabi kraut. This is so easy, I can’t believe I didn’t make this years ago! I shredded the kohlrabi, skin and all, on a medium grater then mixed with sea salt. After a minute or so of mixing, the salt started releasing the juice from the kohlrabi, and I packed it in a wide-mouth quart jar. I used about a tablespoon of salt, or 2% salt by weight for the kraut. I usually start tasting it after about four days, and in our warm summer kitchen it is usually ready for the refrigerator in less than a week. It was bubbly in a little over 24 hours, which is a sign that the Lactobacillus bacteria are doing their thing.
Since I have become fascinated with lacto-fermentation of late (some would say obsessed), I grew some Napa cabbage this spring in hopes of making my first ever kimchi. I only set out two plants, one each of Soloist and Little Jade, since I have better luck growing them here as a fall crop. The Soloist got eaten up pretty badly by slugs, as you can see in the below photo. It weighed in at exactly two pounds, including the holey outer leaves.
But after stripping away the outer leaves, and sending a couple of slugs down the drain, the head still weighed 1-1/2 pounds and didn’t look too bad at all. It was just the right size to make a quart of kimchi.
I needed a bit of onion for the kimchi, and found a Red Torpedo Tropea just the right size too. I had planted my leftover Dixondale seedlings in a window box planter, and they are past the scallion stage and now spring onion sized.
Unlike the white kimchi I recently made, I made this batch of kimchi with some dried red pepper added. I used about a Tbsp of my dried Aji Angelo peppers, mixed up with several cloves of Silver White garlic and some grated ginger in the food processor to make a paste. I brined the chopped cabbage for about four hours, using a 3.5% brine solution I made with 3 Tbsp sea salt dissolved in dechlorinated water. After draining the cabbage, I mixed it with coarsely grated daikon radish and carrot, plus the chopped Red Torpedo Tropea onion. I massaged the red pepper/garlic/ginger paste in with my hands, then packed the kimchi in a quart jar. I used one of the outer leaves to cover the kimchi in the jar and help keep it submerged under the liquid. It too was bubbly after 24 hours, and I will taste test it after a few days.
Last week I found a few more garlic scapes, from the softneck silverskin Silver White no less. Some softnecks occasionally throw up scapes, and I was happy to have a few more to harvest. I also continue to get a nice handful (or two) of snow peas every couple of days. The heat is slowly doing the vines in though, so I doubt they will be around much longer.
The last harvest was a bit of basil and arugula leaves I found for a pizza we made Saturday night. My wife was drooling over the one I made for myself last week, and decided to close out her tour of cooking with another one. It’s more of the Adagio arugula, and mostly Profuma di Genova basil.
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!