It’s time once again for Harvest Monday, where we celebrate all things harvest related. We got a bit of rain last week, though not as much as I hoped. After a dry August, any precipitation is welcome around here. The vegetable garden is producing well, and last week I harvested peppers, eggplant, tomatoes, beans and the first of the Centercut winter squashes.
The Mellow Star peppers are a rock star in the garden this year. I have gotten almost three pounds so far from one plant, and since the peppers have thin walls that amounts to a lot of them! I have roasted and pickled them, as well as blistering them in a skillet in a bit of hot oil.
This time of year I tend to space the harvests out and get a few things one day, and then other things the next. One day I worked on tomatoes, which thankfully I can now do standing up since the plants are tall. Early in the season it often involves crawling on my knees, which is how I get many of the peppers now. The tomato harvest included a mix of cherry types, slicers and paste varieties.
I cooked down the paste tomatoes to make a sauce for enchiladas. That called for tortillas too, and I made a big batch of them on an earlier day. I made one version with blue corn masa, and the other one was half white corn masa and half White Sonora flour. I’ve found the tortillas keep for several days in the refrigerator, and even longer in the freezer.
For the enchiladas I added fresh peppers and some of my dried guajillo chile powder to the tomato sauce. I used both pink and black beans, along with chihuahua cheese. Instead of rolling up the tortillas as you would for classic enchiladas, I break them into pieces and layer with the sauce, beans, and cheese. I add more cheese on top after the casserole is bubbly hot. My casserole creation is based on this Eating Well recipe. Since it makes six servings, I freeze the leftovers for later meals.
On another day and I was harvesting beans. I got a good haul of the Rose beans, which are proving to be quite a tasty and productive heirloom variety. This batch weighed almost three pounds, and after stringing and snapping I cooked up a pound of them then blanched and froze the rest. We ate on the cooked beans for two meals, and the frozen ones often wind up in soups.
And on yet another day I harvested eggplant. Those plants are slowing down, but we’re still getting plenty to eat. There’s a lone Jimmy Nardello pepper in there hanging out with them.
With lots of eggplant, peppers, and tomatoes on hand I thought it was a good time to make ratatouille. I chopped up the veggies, including some red onion I bought, tossed with a little olive oil and roasted on a sheet pan until tender. Then I added fresh basil, oregano and thyme from the garden. While the veggies were roasting I made polenta in the rice cooker. It’s easy to make that way and only requires stirring a few times during the regular cook cycle. I served the ratatouille over the polenta, along with tilapia in a piccata sauce.
Molly is our youngest cat but also the biggest. At a recent vet visit she weighed in at 17 pounds. She loves my wife, and can often be found on her lap or sitting in her chair. We have put her on a lower calorie food in hopes she can slim down a bit. She is not camera shy though!
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 please take a minute and check out what everyone is harvesting!