I finally roasted the last home-grown beets today and made an arugula/beet/goat cheese salad with toasted pepitas. I still have three butternuts and plenty of garlic in my pantry (I am at the last head of hardneck but still have almost the entire braid of softnecks left). The beets (Golden and Chiogga and regular) were super sweet and yummy. I had harvested them at the end of October and they kept very well in the fridge. So good to still be enjoying my harvest.
I finally harvested my Thai peppers today. I had one plant in a container on my back porch and it gave me two cups of hot peppers. Most of them were red, some (about a third of them total) still green. I cut off the entire plant and then picked the peppers to make hot sauce. I followed this recipe for Thai hot sauce but I lowered the amount of vinegar because I wanted it thicker. I also do not have a food mill, so it is just hot sauce, seeds and all. It is super spicy and I am looking forward to using it instead of store-bought Sriracha sauce and Chili garlic sauce.
I have so many tomatoes, we cannot keep up with eating them raw. So, I slow-roasted two baking sheets of tomatoes for a few hours (at 325F, but that was too hot, so I reduced it to 250F) and then packed them in olive oil and stored them in the fridge for use in pasta sauces and on pizza.
I had a ton of Thai basil on my back porch and turned it into Thai basil peanut pesto. I served it over pan-seared trout last night for dinner. Delicious!
And I made more quick refrigerator pickles with the pickling cucumbers form the plot. Yum! The cucumbers are coming to an end, it seems.
I harvested my first pickling cucumber. It was huge, thanks to the recent rain and the heat, and weighed almost 15 ounces. It was well hidden under the leaves, and I kind of discovered it by accident. I did not even know the plant had fruit yet. I pickled it in Grillo Pickles brine, next time I will make my own brine.
I made a small batch of garlic scape pesto with about half the scapes I harvested (15) and home-grown basil leaves (the basil leaves from the porch are huge!). I just pureed all of it with olive oil and salt. No cheese, no nuts. More versatile this way. I froze the surplus for future use. This pesto is so great on pasta, pizza, roasted veggies, or mixed into a pesto mayo for sandwiches …
I used up the last two home-grown butternut squash to make squash soup. As usual, I roasted the squash (with fresh herbs stuck in the cavities) cut-side down to bring out its caramelized flavor before adding it to a pot of sweated onions. I just added water and seasoning and let it simmer for 15 minutes before pureeing it. Served the soup topped with grated Parmesan and chopped (home-grown) parsley.
We went apple picking yesterday. We always go to Honey Pot Hill Orchard. It was super nice and since it was a Monday afternoon, not crowded at all. We came home with half a bushel of apples (Cortland and Mutsu only, as these are the kids’ favorites). The sandwiches we had at the orchard were delicious (I used the homemade pickled green tomatoes I made yesterday). It was baguette spread with salted butter and grainy mustard, topped with sharp cheddar, apple slices (from just harvested apples), pickled tomatoes and lettuce. So good! Sadly, I forgot to take a picture.
I went to the garden today to check in and harvested some carrots, an eggplant and some green tomatoes. The tomatoes were quick-pickled to top tomorrow’s sandwiches – I am taking my teenagers apple-picking in the afternoon and we will have cheddar/apple slices/grainy mustard/pickled green tomato sandwiches aka Farmers Lunch Sandwich (No. 9) as served by City Feed and Supply around the corner.
Not pictured: countless Caprese sandwiches, creamy cucumber salad (with sour cream dressing), Swiss chard frittata.
I roasted two sheets of tomatoes today. 250F convection oven (on bake) for 30 minutes. They were grape to cocktail size, and that was the right amount of time. I used them to top a tomato tart I made for dinner. So yummy!