Late July Update

I harvested some more tomatoes and some forgotten beets and baby carrots. I need to replant the spot in the garden where I pulled the garlic a couple of weeks ago. I will direct-sow lettuces, carrots and beets and some basil. I also need to stake the beans and do a thorough weeding. There is so much grass in my plot. I think it came from the field hay that I used to mulch last year or the year before.

The cucumbers do not look great. The plants are not thriving, and the fruit is small and round. I know they suffered from the heat. Cucumbers do not like temperatures above 90, and we just had a 8 day-heat wave with temperatures in the mid- to upper 90s. The zucchini is dying. Not sure what is happening. It is just shriveling up, including the one single fruit, which stopped growing and is deformed and starting to yellow. The eggplant plants are tiny. The three winter squash plants have very few flowers. I am hoping things will improve.

Tomatoes are looking great. Tons of fruit, but the plants themselves are not very tall this year. I need to amend the soil this fall. Beans, corn and flowers are looking great.

Thai Basil Pesto

Thai basil harvest, 2 cups of leaves total

I harvested much of the two Thai basil plants on my back porch and made pesto. I used it for dinner to make Thai pesto noodle bowls with crispy ground pork. I followed this tried and true recipe for the pesto though. So good!

Crispy pork with Thai pesto over rice noodles. Yum!
Mise en place (with last year’s home-grown garlic)
To be blitzed
Done. So flavorful and fresh. I absolutely love this recipe.

Pesto Time

I made a good amount of “pesto” today. By “pesto” I mean basil, salt and olive oil. I leave out the garlic, cheese and nuts to add later depending on the dish. This way, it is more versatile. Just blitzed it all up and froze it covered in olive oil in an ice cube tray. Looking forward to yummy meals all year long: pesto chicken, base for pizza and pasta, pesto mayo for sandwiches and much more. Next up will be my Thai basil peanut pesto.

Garlic Harvest

I harvested my garlic today. It was a good amount and decent-sized. I harvested 27 heads of hardneck garlic (Red Russian) and 30 heads of softneck garlic (Transylvania). 57 heads total of 60 that I had planted in the fall. I will air-dry them now for about two days and then hang the stalks to cure in my back hallway for two to three weeks, depending on the humidity. They will then be cleaned, and I will save two or three of the biggest heads of each variety for planting in the fall. The softnecks will be braided and the hardnecks, which we will consume first, will just be stored in a basket or wooden bowl.

Hardnecks in the front, softnecks in the back