Welcome to Harvest Monday, where we celebrate all things harvest related. It was a fairly light harvest week here as we still had a lot of veggies left from the previous week. I made a couple of cuttings of lettuce from plants growing in the greenhouse salad boxes. One was labeled as Salad Bowl on the seed packet but looks a lot like Oak Leaf to me. Either way it was tasty even if a bit dubious. I also cut the last bit of Tango and Bambi from a salad box in the greenhouse, and promptly planted more seedlings for replacements including the Salad Bowl wannabe. The salad boxes have given us lots of lettuce over the last month or so as I wait for the outside plantings to size up.
I also harvested all the kohlrabi I had planted in one of the cold frame beds. It’s a mix of the purple Kolibri and the green Konan, and I had a bit over 8 pounds of it total. The slugs have been busy on it but the damage is only skin deep. It’s been a great year here for kohlrabi, and I still have more plants of Kolibri and Kossak growing in the main garden. This bit brings our yearly haul up to 75 pounds of it, which is certainly a new record for me. Much of that has been fermented and turned into kraut, kimchi and kohlrabi ‘pickles.’
I used a few of these to make a jar of garlicky kohlrabi kraut. I roasted a head of garlic first, then smashed it up and added the whole head (minus the skins) plus two cloves of minced fresh garlic to the shredded kohlrabi before stuffing it in the quart jar. It smelled heavenly even when raw, assuming you like garlic of course! The garlic mellows during fermenting, and I sometimes roast two whole heads to go in there. I started another jar of plain kohlrabi kraut too, though I think it’s anything but plain after it’s fermented.
And I cut enough Wild Garden Mix kale for some braised kale my wife cooked up one night. It was mild and sweet, no doubt helped by a couple of recent frosts and freezes.
I smoked the last of the hot peppers I harvested the previous week. It’s taken a while to process them all because the dehydrator can only hold so many at one time, and they have been taking a couple of days to fully dry. Below it’s Senorita and Farmer’s Market jalapenos, Biggie Chili and Czech Black ready to go on the grill. I smoked another batch later in the week, and other than a couple of plants of Korean hot peppers I have in the greenhouse that should be all of them. Some of the plants left in the garden Aren’t Quite Dead Yet though and they might give us a few more ripe ones.
I used some of the fresh baby ginger from last week to make sushi ginger (gari). After blanching the ginger in boiling water for 30 seconds I sliced it super thin on my Benriner mandoline before pickling in a mix of rice vinegar, sugar and salt. I am wearing my cut resistant gloves for the slicing operation. Commercial gari is often artificially colored pink, while my ginger was a pale yellow color before and after pickling.
And I experimented with drying some of the fresh turmeric I grew. I followed the instructions in this video and simmered the fresh turmeric roots in water for about 45 minutes. This serves to gelatinize the starches and makes for a more uniform color. Then I sliced the roots into small pieces and dried them in the dehydrator. You can see the dried slices in the below photo. Next I put them in the spice grinder to turn them into turmeric powder. It made about a heaping tablespoon or so of powder, which will be enough to season a few meals and perhaps a jar of sauerkraut. The powder has a lot of flavor compared to most commercial turmeric I have tasted. I saved about half the roots for using fresh.
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!