It’s payday in the garden. All the sweating and fretting are beginning to seem worthwhile. ‘Matt’s Wild Cherry’ continues to be the star performer in sheer number of tomatoes produced, but ‘Jaune Flamme’ is so loaded with fruit that the tomato cage is leaning to one side (and these are heavy tomato cages). One big disappointment is ‘Tess’s Land Race’. Those are the small tomatoes outside the bowl in the photo above. It was supposed to be a currant tomato in a range of colors. I only set out one plant, but was hoping for some color other than red. I got red. They look almost exactly like ‘Matt’s Wild Cherry’, but they taste nothing like. This is going to be the first tomato plant I’ve ever ripped out of the ground; the skins are tough and the flavor is just strange, doesn’t even taste like a tomato. Yuck. A big “thumbs down”.
A few days ago I picked the first okra pod – ‘Jing Orange’. And today after I type this, I’m going out to pick a couple more – ‘Emerald’ and ‘Beck’s Big Buck’. Any good ideas what to do with 3 okra pods?
Last week I harvested all the potato onions and the remaining two garlic varieties, ‘Nootka Rose’ and ‘Romanian Red’. I still haven’t heard a convincing explanation of the name “potato onion”, but these are them.
They’re a so-called perennial or multiplier onion because what you don’t eat, you replant. If you plant a small one, you’ll get a big one and if you plant a big one, you’ll get a clump of small ones. They have a mild, but very nice, flavor. I’m trying to build up my stock of them, so probably will eat very few and replant the rest, either this fall or next spring.
But today was the day I most look forward to in the garden – the first chile pepper. It was a variety that I hadn’t grown before – Korean Hybrid ‘Winner’. It turned out to be a slim pepper – I was expecting a broader and longer one – but it tasted great and was indeed hot. I forgot to take a picture before we ate it for lunch, but there should be plenty more.
Yesterday, I dug up a volunteer daikon which was starting to bolt. And I’ve been perusing my copy of The Joy of Pickling, courtesy of Wendy at Greenish Thumb. I don’t have enough of anything to make a big batch for canning yet, but the book also has a number of recipes for quick pickles – small batch pickles and relishes to be consumed within a few days. So, I made something I’ve made before from other recipes, but this time I followed the recipe in the book – Vietnamese Pickled Carrot and Radish. Perfect atop last night’s Banh Mi Burgers. I more or less followed this recipe for Vietnamese Five-Spice Pork Burgers, except I left off the pate (not having any on hand) and I didn’t butter the burger buns before grilling them. We didn’t miss either omission.
I made one other noteworthy thing from the garden last week – an omelette filled with a mixture of sautéed tomatoes, bacon, onion and fresh dill. No recipe, no photos, but you can figure it out for yourself.
I’m a little late for this week’s Garden to Table Challenge, but better late than never.
Now off to pick those two okra pods. I’ll let you know what I made out of them next week.