Harvest Monday March 12, 2018

Welcome to Harvest Monday, where we celebrate all things harvest related. I managed to get one fresh harvest last week. The kale in the greenhouse has made a comeback after getting frozen to the ground back in January, and I was able to get a small cutting. I believe this is True Siberian, a cold hardy type I got from Adaptive Seeds. It was very tender and sweet tasting, and cooked up in a matter of minutes.

True Siberian kale

True Siberian kale

It went into a kale and sweet potato hash dish I made for dinner one night. I make this dish fairly often, and I used one of the Purple sweet potatoes this time. I toss the cubed sweet potatoes with olive oil and bake in a cast iron skillet along until they are browned and tender. Meanwhile, I blanch or steam the chopped kale until it is just tender. I add the kale to the skillet just before serving and pop it back in the oven for a few minutes to warm up. I sometimes add onions or garlic, but this time I seasoned it with only salt and a little homemade smoked paprika I added at the table. The purple sweet potatoes almost look like beets in the photo. I also use orange fleshed and white fleshed sweet potatoes for this dish, it’s all good!

Kale and Sweet Potato Hash

Kale and Sweet Potato Hash

In other news, I’ve baked a few loaves of bread lately. I made one last week using the Artisan Sourdough No Knead Bread recipe at Breadtopia. I’m tweaking this recipe a bit, scaling it up by 50% to make a bigger loaf that better fits the oval clay baker I use. And I’ve bumped up the amount of whole wheat flour while decreasing the hydration a tad to make a stiffer dough. I mix it up the night before baking and leave it sit on the counter overnight to ferment. Then in the morning I shape it and put it in a brotform to proof and it’s ready to go in the oven after I eat breakfast. This is a take on the classic New York Times No-Knead Bread recipe, and it couldn’t be much easier to make. It gets a great oven spring in the clay baker, as well as a crispy crust.

Artisan Sourdough No-Knead Bread

Artisan Sourdough No-Knead Bread

Outside, it’s beginning to look more and more like spring around here. The gooseberries and blackberries are all coming out with leaves. I didn’t check the currants but I imagine they are too. The cold winter didn’t seem to faze any of the berries, and I am hoping for a fruitful year here in 2018. That’s Natchez in the below photo, and the Apache plants are coming out as well.

Natchez blackberry leafing out

Natchez blackberry leafing out

Inside I’m babysitting lots of little seedlings right about now. One interesting one is a seed grown hybrid canna called South Pacific Orange. I was amazed by how the first leaves are already starting to look like cannas! I’m looking to add these to the Wild Garden where they should attract pollinators and hummingbirds and not get eaten up by the deer. They will need repotting soon as they are growing quite fast. This is one of the 2018 AAS Winners and a cousin to South Pacific Scarlet which was a 2013 Winner. I may have to give that one a try next year.

Canna South Pacific Orange seedlings

Canna South Pacific Orange seedlings

LATE UPDATE: What happened to spring? It started snowing and sleeting yesterday, and we woke up to this scene this morning. I measured about 3 inches last night, and with warm temperatures today it should be melted by the end of the day. Still, I hope everything with its head above ground outside is okay. That was not the kind of birthday present I wanted!

March snow

March snow

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!

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14 Responses to Harvest Monday March 12, 2018

  1. It’s so lovely to see those small leaflets poking out. Tells you that spring is on its way! Your bread looks lovely. I hope one day to make loaves that look like that! I have been told the difference could be diastatic malt – US flour has this as standard, Australian flour does not.

    • Dave says:

      The diastatic malt should do the trick! I use it for some recipes that need a bit of lift. I use King Arthur flour, and it has the malted barley flour already in it.

  2. Michelle says:

    Oh, surprise! And Happy Birthday! The snow sure is pretty.

    I must have read and internalized one of your previous posts about the roasted sweet potato and greens dish. Last night I did something similar with sausage that went into the cast iron skillet as it preheated in the oven and then sweet potatoes, onions, and lastly green cabbage. It’s such an easy, delicious, and satisfying meal. The week before I did it with leftover braised goat instead of sausage.

    Cannas from seed! Cool, I’m going to have to try that.

  3. Margaret says:

    That kale looks delicious as does the hash. And that crusty loaf of bread….I can almost smell it! No spring here yet – the snow is flying right now, as it was for you obviously! What a contrast between the blackberry leafing out & green grass to all white.

    And a very happy birthday – I’m sure you’ll get spoiled!

  4. Sue Garrett says:

    Spring doesn’t seem to want to put in an appearance here either.

  5. Denver says:

    I – like everyone on the planet – absolutely love that NYT no knead recipe! Love the crust on that loaf.

  6. Your bread always looks so mouth-watering, mmm. The sweet potato dish looks tasty too, nice to mix it with greens.

    No post from me this week as I’ve been away visiting my mum. And apparently we’re having a return to cold weather next week, so our garden might look like yours again soon…. And heading back by train today through the Norfolk countryside there were still large banks of snow along field edges that haven’t melted from a couple of weeks ago!

  7. Phuong says:

    Happy birthday. It has been a cold spring indeed.

    Your kale is already really big after being killed back. Outside, our Red Russian came back even though it’s still very small, but the Nero kale is nowhere to be seen. I noticed you’ve already started your early tomatoes, I’m just getting ready to start mine today.

  8. Marie Brown says:

    Happy Birthday!

  9. Catherine says:

    We had the same here in the UK. Just as I was capering with joy at the trees in the orchard coming into leaf, bam, three days of a couple of feet of snow. Fingers crossed they weather it!

  10. Mrs pickles says:

    Great post. Im going to have to try that bread recipe

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