Welcome to Harvest Monday, where we celebrate all things harvest related. It’s truly pepper time here in my neck of the woods. I must have picked almost a peck of sweet peppers on Saturday morning. I naively went down to the garden with only a gallon bucket, which I quickly filled. For my next trip I took two buckets and a Tubtrug! In the group photo below we have Orange Blaze, Carmen, Cornito Giallo, Cornito Rosso, Sweetie Pie and Dolce di Minervino peppers along with Dancer, Galine, Nubia and Nadia eggplants. Topping it all off is a big tromboncino squash.
Sweetie Pie is listed as a mini bell pepper, but some of mine are as big as full sized bell peppers I have grown in the past! My one plant has been super productive, and I decided to dehydrate this batch since I had so many other peppers coming in. I dried the Orange Blaze peppers too. Both of these are AAS Winners, and are doing great in the garden this year.
But wait – I also got about a gallon of paprika type peppers Saturday morning. It’s Hungarian Magyar, Nora and Szegedi in the below photo. I’m smoking most of these today, but saved the round Nora peppers for dehydrating as-is and turning into a single varietal paprika powder.
I got a couple of newcomers from the bean patch. It’s Turkey Craw on the left and Doyce Chambers Greasy Cut-Shorts on the right in the below photo. The Turkey Craw beans are on the Slow Food USA Ark of Taste, and they were indeed tasty when I cooked them up. These beans can be used as a snap bean, for fresh shelling and as a dried bean. Other Slow Food veggies I’m growing this year include the I’itoi onion, Lorz Italian garlic, Yellow Cabbage collard greens and Jimmy Nardello peppers.
I also got more of the Korean hot peppers last week, including Gochugaru and Kimchi in the below photo. These container grown plants have done quite well for me this year.
And I got more of the Lady Choi hot peppers. I dehydrated all these and ground them up into gochugaru powder to use in making kimchi. The Gochugaru and Kimchi varieties are probably my favorites so far. Lady Choi has a good color and flavor, but is a tad too hot for my tastes. That means I can use less of it when making kimchi. More is better, because the peppers not only add heat but flavor and color too.
I don’t like to grind up the seeds when I make chile powder, paprika or gochugaru. I have found it’s easier to remove the seeds and membranes from the peppers before drying, a task I do wearing gloves when working with hot peppers. I’ve also saved seeds from the Gochugaru and Kimchi peppers since they are not widely available and I hope to include them in a seed giveaway later this year as well as grow them myself next year.
Earlier in the week my wife and I did a taste test on Jimmy Nardello and Manganji peppers. I cut them in half and grilled them before the tasting. My wife and I agreed that Manganji was tasty, but Jimmy Nardello had a bit more flavor and was a tad sweeter. I’ve been growing Jimmy Nardello for years, and it’s one of my favorite sweet peppers. Next year I want to try Melrose, another sweet pepper brought to America by Italian immigrants. It’s doing well for Phuong (Kentucky Fried Garden), so I want to see what we think of it here.
I got another nice harvest of Kaleidoscope peppers last week. I pickled the last batch of these mildly hot peppers, and this time I decided to try dehydrating them. I have no idea how much heat they will have when dried, but they might make a good chile powder. I have so many of them coming on I need to find some new ways to use them. I may try smoking some of them too, for a smoked chile powder.
And lastly I baked another loaf of sourdough bread last week. I was trying to score the loaf to make Stegosaurus Bread, but it didn’t turn out quite like I hoped. Fortunately it tasted fine, and if I try this one again I will snip the dough deeper with the scissors. Most of this loaf will likely wind up in the freezer, though I did use a bit of it to make tuna melt sandwiches one day for lunch. With the sourdough bread for a base, it held up well with the moist tuna topping.
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 of any size or shape you want to share, add your name and blog link to Mr Linky below. There are no rules or regulations, and wonky veggies are always as welcome as the prize winners. And please be sure and check out what everyone is harvesting, or wishing they were harvesting!