This week’s harvests included a few cabbages, strawberries, zucchini, red currants, small onions and a few carrots between rain showers. That added 15 pounds to our harvests, bringing our yearly total up to 59 pounds. We ate some snap peas, but none made it inside to be weighed and neither did the 3 ripe raspberries that I found. The garden is looking good. All the rain and wind did damage some of the calendulas, carrot tops and a few potato plants. The beet greens were flattened, but they bounced back. Everything in the hoop houses continues to grow and I just love checking on them to see how they are doing. Peaking between the squash leaves to find an acorn squash and a butternut squash. How big are the zucchinis getting? Oh, look at that tiny cantaloupe – it is the size of a grape! Wonder how big it will get in our cool, wet climate? And the corn continues to grow and the ears are developing. I have hope for corn larger than baby corn this year! We have many cabbages that are harvest size. I pulled this one up one evening and made a new recipe with it – Scalloped Cabbage. Basically cheese sauce over cooked cabbage wedges with buttered crumbs spread over the top and baked in the oven until brown on top. I really liked it, Rod said it was okay. Of course, I like anything with cheese 🙂 I picked maybe half of the ripe red currants from our 8 bushes. That was over 5 pounds. Last year I got 3 3/4 pounds, so we surpassed that. I went to pick more the next night, but the no-see-ums were too bad. I’ll get out there this next week and pick the rest. I turned these into red currant jelly and syrup. Here are a few of our Stuttgarter storage onions that came out when I was weeding the onion bed. I am happy to see they are bulbing now, but hope they get a lot bigger. Small onions are a pain to peel when you are making a meal. Here are the trimmed up onions and a few carrots that I pulled too. I planted two types of carrots and can’t remember which was where. So these are either Atomic Red or Giants of Colmar. Both are new varieties for me. I love to see the odd shaped veggies that come out of the garden – how fun! I cooked these with a venison roast along with store bought potatoes and beef broth in the dutch oven. It turned out yummy, but not enough left overs. The roast was pretty small. I like to use the leftovers for pot pie… maybe next time. There were a few more strawberries that ripened. Some of them looked like a slug snacked on them, but I think they are splitting from too much rain. They still tasted good. Most of the snap peas haven’t made it inside to be weighed. I just walk down the deck and pick and snack on them along the way. Unfortunately, the dog has learned to do this too… I noticed this zucchini and have been watching it get bigger and bigger. I decided it was big enough and went ahead and harvested it. I used it in a Chocolate Zucchini Cake which turned out quite moist and good with or without the cream cheese frosting. These two cabbages weighed about 5 pounds together. That is a little small for this variety, Derby Day, which says they get 3 to 5 pounds each. But I have them growing in large planters, so they don’t have a ton of space for their roots. Each planter has two cabbages and snap peas. After these two, we have 8 cabbages in the garden that are ready to harvest any time and 3 that are newer transplants. We decided to try to make some pickled cabbage and see if we like it. I found the recipe in my Maximizing Your Mini Farm book. I chopped one and a half heads of the cabbage to make 16 cups. I layered that in a large bowl with 1/2 cup coarse salt, covered with plastic wrap and put in the refrigerator overnight. This morning, I rinsed the cabbage with fresh cold water to wash the excess salt off. We don’t want a repeat of the pickled radish disaster! I mixed up the pickling mixture and added the cabbage for a few minutes to get it hot. Into the jars it all went and then into the boiling water bath for processing. They are on the counter now and we will try some soon… Hope we like it!
Michelle and her husband Rod currently homestead in their small backyard in Southeast Alaska with the goal of producing as much of their food as they can. They happily share what they are doing in hopes of inspiring you to take steps to become more self reliant too.
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