Monday, August 13, 2012

Harvest Monday - August 13, 2012

Kale was in the starring role in the harvest basket this past week. The Lark's Tongue Kale is producing a superabundance of leaves whilst the rest of the vegetables other than the cucumbers have gone on summer vacation (permanent for some).

That big bunch shown above was used to make an overstuffed Kale, Bacon, Onion, and Dried Tomato Frittata. I had to add an extra couple of eggs to this at the last minute since the eggs weren't covering the filling when I put it in the pan. My husband loved it, he called me as soon as he finished eating it to tell me how good it was. That man really loves his veggies!

The cucumbers are starting to come in at a pretty steady pace. I'm growing Tasty Green Japanese cucumbers (on the left) and Green Fingers Persian Cucumbers this year. I don't make pickled cucumbers so I like to grow varieties that are best for fresh eating and to my taste just about any Japanese type is the best and the Persian ones are nearly just as good. That's close to the last of the Apollo broccoli. My 4 plants have produced 7.5 pounds of shoots over the course of 7 weeks, not bad production and I really like the flavor of this variety. The skin on the stems of this variety also stay fairly tender which means less trimming and peeling, which has been very nice.

Here's more kale which substituted for chard in a zucchini and greens gratin. A few zucchini and more cucumbers. I couldn't figure out why the zucchini production had slowed down, until...

I finally found this monster which had burrowed down under the main stem and hid from view. I don't bother to weigh giants like this, they get split and fed to the chickens.

Basil and other herbs don't generally make it into my harvest tally unless I harvest a BIG bunch. Last night I harvested this basketful of Profumo di Genova basil for a batch of pesto so I weighed it and included it in the harvest. There's a couple more Persian cucumbers in the basket and one of the Pink Lemonade lemons from my little pot grown tree.

I forget where I saw this tip recently, but a bit of lemon juice in basil pesto is supposed to keep it from turning black right away, so the juice from half of that little lemon (about 1/2 tablespoon) went into the pesto that I made last night. The lemon flavor wasn't really noticeable and the pesto did stay green a bit longer but did eventually turn dark. I used about half the batch last night, so it will be interesting to see how the lemonized pesto holds up in the refrigerator for a few days. Anyway, we are off pasta and starchy foods around here so rather than slathering the pesto on linguine or fusilli I grilled up some big flat romano beans (from the farmer's market), some eggplant (not mine either), a big sweet yellow pepper (nor mine), and some broccoli (yay, mine!) and slathered the pesto on those along with a drizzle of aged moscato vinegar. I also sliced a big fat Brandywine tomato (still not mine) and crumbled some goat cheese on that and put a fat dollop of pesto on top of each slice. It was all very yummy.

Here's the harvest totals for the past week:

Profumo di Genova basil - 9.5 oz.
Apollo broccoli - 4 oz.
Capers - 2.5 oz.
Green Fingers Persian cucumbers - 1 lb., 3.6 oz.
Tasty Green Japanese cucumbers - 1 lb., 9.5 oz.
Lark's Tongue kale - 2 lb., 12.3 oz.
Parade Scallions - 8 oz.
Padron peppers - 1.4 oz (the first 3 babies!)
Da Fiore zucchini - 1 lb., 7.3 oz.

The total harvests for the week were 8 lb., 10.1 oz.
Which brings the yearly total to 97 lb., 8 oz.

Harvest Monday is hosted by Daphne on her blog Daphne's Dandelions. Head on over there to see what other garden bloggers have been harvesting lately.


  1. That frittata looks so yummy! It is beautiful!

  2. Beautiful kale, mine is just starting to put on size. The frittata sounds wonderful (but I would just point out anything tastes great with bacon and onions, you got me with just those 2 ingredients). And thanks for the ideas on using pesto. Same here, trying to avoid those carbs.

  3. We love frittatas around here. It's such a good way to use veggie odds and ends. We had one yesterday with a few fresh peppers and some dried tomatoes. And I love kale in there.

    I'm with you on the Apollo broccoli. I have to remind myself to harvest lots of the stalk, since they are so tender. I'm not sure if it is any more productive than other heading types, but it has such a great flavor that it doesn't matter to me!

  4. The kale looks lovely. And the frittata looks delicious. My hubby would never eat it though as he hates his veggies. I'm so shocked that he is as healthy as he is.

  5. Gorgeous kale. My sis in Seattle raves about it (eating, not growing her own) but it isn't very well-known here. What I'm eyeing on your blog is that caper photo to right. Now those is what I would love to grow but it's not hot enough in the pre-Alps.

  6. what a lovely harvest! I don't eat much pasta and such any more either. But I do make a tomato salad (sometimes squash & tomato) and put lots of pesto on that. yummy! I find packing it level in the container and covering with olive oil helps keep it from turning dark in the fridge.

  7. Lots of cucumbers, squash plants held back by hidden giants, and trying to avoid carbs too! What a lot we all have in common. You're very fortunate to have a coastal breeze and some nice greens. I'll definitely try the vegetable, pesto, cheese combo.

  8. That fritata looks amazing. Good to have a grateful husband too.

  9. We grew a diminutive leafed basil this year, and Thai basil, neither of which are suitable for pesto. You remind me to research Romano beans.

  10. Mmmm yummy frittata (another good one for using up lots of eggs)
    Basil is the taste of Summer !! love the smell and taste, great hint with the lemon last lot of pesto went off to quickly.

  11. With all this talk of pesto I had to check my basil seedlings, and yes they have just germinated....may take a awhile before I'm eating coating broccoli with pesto though. The Japanese cucumbers sound interesting I'll have to keep an eye out for them.

  12. That tomato, goat cheese, and pesto combo sounds absolutely delicious. The frittata sounded pretty yum too!

    I tend to not include herbs in my harvest tallys either because usually I just trim a bit as I am cooking and it is negligible in amount and I don't want to stop cooking to weigh and photograph it. LOL!

    I should grow more of the slicing cucumbers. I grow picklers because they are also good eating (when young and peeled), but seeing all those long beauties in your post make me wish I had some in my garden.

  13. I always love seeing what varieties you grow, if just for the names! Those romanesco-type zucchini do like to lurk, they blend in so well with the stems it's easy to miss them...

  14. I'm just curious...why are you off bread and pasta? I've seen your pictures (hike) and I know its not a weight loss thing.

    That said, love the blog, your garden, and the food stuff!

    1. Actually, it is in large part (pun intended) a weight loss thing. Before I stsrted limiting starchy and sugary foods I was almost 15 pounds heavier and struggled to keep my weight there, I've been quite a bit heavier in the past. I also suffered from acid reflux most of the time and took medication for it every day. With the change in diet the weight pretty much fell off, it has stayed off, and I'm off the heartburn meds and have only had headtburn about 3 times in the past 18 months. My husband also embraced the dietary changes and lost weight also. I have to say, after struggling with my weight up and down for nearly 40 years, this way of eating has been a revelation.


Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment. I value your insights and feedback.