Sunday, July 19, 2009

Another summer harvest

Our Sunday harvest included figs, squash, cucumbers, okra, cherry tomatoes, green peppers, eggplant, and cantaloupe. We've enjoyed having most of at least one meal a day coming from the garden.
The peppers in this picture above are in addition to the ones I posted yesterday. We are getting lots right now. I've also got cherry tomatoes here but I had already harvested and given away a large bowl full the day before. That's about the amount of okra we get a day. So with these ingredients and the onions and garlic we got earlier in the summer we have been making some tasty okra and tomato dishes. We are still getting a few squash but not as many as before.

Figs! That's a homemade fig newton behind the bowl of fresh figs. They are so nice and sweet. I had never eaten figs before moving into this house. We have 1 large, 1 medium, and 3 small fig trees in the back yard (the 2 bigger ones were here when we moved in.) I have really grown to love this sweet and nutritious snack from the yard.
Pictured above is one of each of a few things we've been enjoying lately. First is the pepper relish I wrote about in the previous post. Haven't tried it yet. The cucumbers are in the middle. I have to tell about these because this is another thing that I have learned to love this year. I never liked cucumbers until we started eating them like this. Some people call it cucumber salad. Some add onions, and/or tomatoes. In other words there are tons of ways to eat these fresh picked cucumbers. I keep them in a jar in the fridge. When Daniel brings them in every day I chop them up and put them in these quart jars of half vinegar and half water. Sometimes I add a little salt and/or sugar. We put them in smaller containers and take them on picnics and Daniel brings them for lunch. We have eaten a ton of cucumbers this way and really enjoyed them.

The last jar is blueberry jam. We do have blueberries in the yard but not enough to make a batch of jam. The girls and I went out to a blueberry farm near Columbia and got over 2 gallons--somewhere around 18 pounds. We enjoyed them fresh, in muffins and scones, and in cobbler. I also made 10 pints of blueberry jam. We have opened these and they are delicious!

Ellen's showing you a berry from our largest blueberry bush in the yard. We have 5 but only one is big like this.

The last of yesterday's harvest is the juicy and sweet cantaloupe. There are 5 pictured here and we have already eaten 5 or so. I also put our first huge butternut squash in this photo which we harvested a couple weeks ago. I threw in some cucumbers for color:)

Finally, here's a picture of the pretty okra flower (notice the bee flying in). We are sad to say that our okra, along with several other plants such as tomato and potato, have a fungal disease. Maybe Daniel will fill you in on the details later. We are just now learning about it and trying to figure it out, but we will not be getting as much okra as expected this year. It's a learning experience and we are learning a lot!


William Kruidenier said...

Beautiful produce -- those blueberries look huge in the enlarged photo!

Laura said...

GORGEOUS!!!! love the ideas of making cucumbers that way. i might have to try that---though unfortunately i don't have a garden to pick mine--will have to make do at the farmers market this week! looks awesome. the pictures look like something out of a magazine.

William Kruidenier said...

Jen, what kind of vinegar in the jars of cukes?

jendanellenarianna said...

I use plain white distilled vinegar--the cheap one from Kroger. I have used other vinegars such as rice or apple cider in smaller salads with tomatoes and onions. Since we have been doing so much pickling I just bought the largest vinegar I could find and have been using that!

Jason said...

Beautiful post, yet again, Kruideniers! Hey, I wanted to sahre this with you. Just came through in an email this morning. Not sure how pertinent it will be to food crops, but I suspect it could be useful for teaching the girls about ecology and impacts of invasive insect species on plants.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Jason. That's a really useful site.

Kathleen O said...

hey guys! your produce looks lucious! Devon and Ellen are craving pickled okra. Any chance of that? How about for their Christmas?

Kallie said...

Amazing, bountiful harvest. It must be such a satisfying feeling. Our garden looks like a Charlie Brown garden after all of our travels this summer:(

Val at The Illustrated Garden said...

What a bountiful harvest! And it looks like your girls are enjoying the garden, too. Thanks for visiting my blog... I'll be following yours, too.