Harvest Monday October 3, 2016

Welcome to Harvest Monday, where we celebrate all things harvest related. After being away for a week, the garden was still in pretty good shape when I got back home. We even got a bit of rain in our absence, which I’m sure was appreciated by all the veggies. The fall planted kale is growing lush, and I cut a bit over a pound of the Red Ursa last week. It met up with a few of our potatoes for some Kale and Potato Hash my wife cooked up to go with grilled fish.

Red Ursa kale

Red Ursa kale

The peppers are still rolling in from the garden. I’m not even bothering to get pics of them all, but I do have a few to share. I got a nice haul of the red Aji Angelo and the yellow Baby Aji Amarillo peppers to turn into some Homemade Fermented Hot Sauce. I think the baccatum peppers make a great tasting hot sauce, and I bet the Aji Amarillo and Aji Angelo will make a tasty combination.

Aji Angelo and Baby Aji Amarillo peppers

Aji Angelo and Baby Aji Amarillo peppers

And speaking of the Baby Aji Amarillo peppers, one plant is producing ‘rogue’ peppers. They are bigger in size than normal, with a nice fruity taste and almost no heat at all. I posted pics on the Artisan Seeds FB group I belong to, and the pepper experts there decided it could be a chinense/baccatum accidental hybrid, probably between the Baby Aji’s and some land race Caribbean Seasoning peppers they grow. The taste sort of reminds me of a chinense type like Trinidad Perfume, so I can buy that theory. Regardless, the peppers are useful, and I will likely throw some in the mix for future hot sauce creations. And I will save seeds and send some back to them for future testing. As for me, I can dig up the plant and try and overwinter it here as well. In the below photo, the rogue peppers are on the left and the Baby Aji’s are on the right.

mystery peppers(L) with Baby Aji Amarillo(R)

mystery peppers(L) with Baby Aji Amarillo(R)

And in other pepper news, I got a nice harvest of three AAS Winners last week. In the below photo, from left to right, it’s Escamillo(2016), Carmen(2006) and Cornito Giallo(2016). Escamillo and Cornito Giallo are two great tasting yellow bull’s horn peppers, and Carmen is one of my all-time favorite red sweet peppers. Next year I want to try the red Cornito Rossa to complete my collection of Johnny’s great pepper introductions.

Escamilllo, Carmen and Cornito Giallo peppers

Escamilllo, Carmen and Cornito Giallo peppers

A newcomer to the harvest basket here is a Turkish cherry pepper called Sanliurfa Kiraz Biber. It has a mild amount of heat, but I think the peppers are a bit small even for cherry peppers. By the time you cut out the stem and core, there’s not much pepper left! Oh well, that’s the way it goes when you try new varieties, and this one isn’t likely to be back next year.

Sanliurfa Kiraz Biber

Sanliurfa Kiraz Biber

Returning to something green, I cut the first head of Napa cabbage last week. This is Soloist, and weighed a bit over 2.5 pounds before I cleaned it up. It was destined for another batch of kimchi. It’s just in time too, as I have eaten all the kimchi I made this spring. That’s a Big Bertha bell pepper along with it in the below photo, and my trusty harvest knife. As bell peppers go, Big Bertha is truly big, but it is dwarfed by the cabbage!

Soloist cabbage and Big Bertha pepper

Soloist cabbage and Big Bertha pepper

I have lots of different recipes in various books for making kimchi. Some recipes call for brining or salting either the whole head or whole leaves and then chopping it up later, but for this batch I cut the cabbage up first and soaked it in a 3.5% brine solution for about five hours. Speed is one advantage of cutting it up first, since the brine can do its thing in less time. Next I drained the cabbage, and mixed it with grated daikon radish and carrot (not from my garden) and some chopped onion. Then I massaged in a mix of garlic, ginger and ground Aji Angelo peppers before packing it into jars to ferment. I got enough to fill one quart and one pint jar. There’s more Napa cabbage in the garden, but the bugs are loving it and I don’t know how much more I will get. I found one snail hanging out in this head, and I decided it didn’t need to be in the kimchi!

kimchi fermenting

kimchi fermenting

It’s looking to be a great year for eggplant here. I’ve already harvested 26 pounds of it, which is more than the 21 pounds I got last year but nowhere near the 45 pounds harvested in 2013. We’ve had plenty to eat though, and our new favorite thing is eggplant sandwiches. We make a stack of grilled eggplant, layered with some combo of cheese, sliced tomato and/or lettuce, and serve it on either homemade bread or buns that we slather with a bit of homemade mustard. That’s Nadia, Galine and Dancer in the below photo.

Nadia, Galine and Dancer eggplant

Nadia, Galine and Dancer eggplant

Another pepper newcomer is the Aji Lemon Drop. This pepper goes by various other names, including Aji Limon and Hot Lemon. It is popular in Peru where it is called Kellu Uchu. Mine are from a container grown plant, and they will likely wind up added to a mix of other peppers for hot sauce. I plan to dry some for use as pepper flakes when a few more ripen.

Aji Lemon Drop peppers

Aji Lemon Drop peppers

I’ll close with a harvest that was somewhat of a surprise – another ripe Captain Lucky tomato that had been hiding from me! The vines took a break for a bit but are blooming and setting on new tomatoes again. I don’t know if they will ripen before our first frost, but even green ones would be welcome. This one starred on BLTs my wife and I enjoyed for lunch one day. I sliced it up thin so we could make it go on both our sandwiches!

Captain Lucky tomato

Captain Lucky tomato

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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14 Responses to Harvest Monday October 3, 2016

  1. Most of the few peppers that are growing in our greenhouse remain green. The odd one that is ripening has been attacked by slugs,
    Susan Garrett recently posted…Unexpected bonusMy Profile

  2. I am impressed by both your harvest efforts and your kimchi efforts. I tried making kimchi once, and it grew white mould, so I stopped.

  3. Will - Eight Gate Farm - NH says:

    It’s so nice that you are still getting such beautiful peppers and eggplant in abundance. I’d bet you would try every variety in the world if you only could!

  4. Margaret says:

    Some beautiful harvests – that is a long line of peppers still rolling in! Your first frost date must still be a ways away for setting tomatoes to have the opportunity to ripen.

    Those eggplant sandwiches sound delicious – I still have a few eggplant that are sloooowly growing. Hopefully I won’t have to wait until next year to give this a try, ’cause it just wouldn’t be the same with store bought eggplant, now would it 🙂
    Margaret recently posted…Harvest Monday – October 3, 2016My Profile

  5. Michelle says:

    The mystery pepper is so interesting! It’s fun when things like that pop up in the garden, especially if they turn out to be good.
    Michelle recently posted…Weekly Garden Update – September 29, 2016My Profile

  6. Glad you found the snail in the cabbage before making the kimchi, that would’ve been an unwelcome crunch.
    Your peppers are still incredible, the round basket with them laid in a circle is beautiful.
    Lou@rainbowchard recently posted…Harvest Monday and a gleanMy Profile

  7. Julie says:

    That sure is a lot of peppers! I’m having a good eggplant year as well. It seems that they were slower to ripen this year, but they are making up for lost time. I haven’t gotten on the kimchi making bandwagon yet. I have not so fond memories of eating some fermented vegetables in Peru many years ago and every time I read about kimchi it sounds similar to that unpleasant experience.
    Julie recently posted…Harvest Monday 10/3/16My Profile

  8. Susie says:

    You’ve inspired me to try a batch of fermented hot sauce – currently on day two! I think I get as excited by the great names given to peppers as much as their taste or appearance … baby aji amarillo, cornito rossa … they all sound very exotic!
    Susie recently posted…Harvest Monday: October 3, 2016My Profile

  9. Lexa says:

    Ahh Dave, you are my pepper idol! Such amazing variety and abundance from your garden. And I love the “one off” pepper that you saved. It will be fun to see what it does next year. And those little red ones, to me they look just perfect for stuffing with goat cheese and quickly grilling. Have a great gardening week!
    Lexa recently posted…Harvest Monday – The Beans are InMy Profile

  10. Lexa says:

    Ahh Dave, you are my pepper idol! Such amazing variety and abundance from your garden. And I love the “one off” pepper that you saved. It will be fun to see what it does next year. And those little red ones, to me they look just perfect for stuffing with goat cheese and quickly grilling. Have a great gardening week!
    Lexa recently posted…Harvest Monday – The Beans are InMy Profile

  11. Phuong says:

    Wow your autumn kale has grown very quickly and the peppers and eggplants still look amazing. We have lots of hot peppers ripening on the plants, my husband wants us to try drying them.

  12. K says:

    I don’t eat enough hot sauce to ever use as many peppers as you, but when I see your variety, it makes me want to try many more kinds. The eggplants are beautiful. I have a friend who says he would grow eggplant even if he didn’t eat it because he thinks the plants are so pretty.
    K recently posted…Progress on the master planMy Profile

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