Monday, 29 April 2013

Harvest Monday

This weeks Harvest included three eggplant weighing in at 900gm

and sweet peppers at 300gm.
There are still 5 eggplants on two bushes and at least 25 peppers on 3 plants so if I'm lucky with the weather they may just hold on for another couple of weeks.

Now I have LIZ to thank for my wonderful eggplant/pepper/chilli harvests as if it wasn't for her inspiring posts on these veggies way back in 2011 I probably wouldn't have bothered trying to grow them. (there had been a few miserable attempts before)

They have been used in salads and curries, grilled on the BBQ, marinated,roasted, pickled and made into relish.

I have also gifted many to my new neighbors and in returned enjoyed their homebaked bread.

They will certainly be on my list again for next years summer crop!!

Joining in with Daphne's dandelions and many other gardener's from around the globe in Sharing What's been harvested/cooked/preserved from our gardens.

Monday, 22 April 2013

Harvest Monday

Last night we went to bed with the sound of rain on the roof and amazingly it was still raining when we woke this morning.........14mls yepeee!!
So this afternoon I spent collecting cow/horse manure to dig through the damp soil in the veggie beds, to my surprise there are lots of tiny lettuce seedlings popping up everywhere !
Oh I just can't wait to plant out seedlings and this years garlic crop!
The past week has been one of harvesting the last of....

The last of the delicious apples,their small but tasty and are just the perfect for morning and afternoon tea, not the same as Mulberry/rhubarb muffins but less calories when your counting!
The last of the Basil went into lentil and veggie soup.

The last of the Beans went into the soup too.
The last of the tomatoes into pasta sause.

There was also a first ! Green and Red chillies!
I've only picked and used one green one as I love looking at them in their pots! Erk, I'm thinking after the last couple of cold nights I may be better off picking them all!
And another surprise.... self sown coriander seedlings in the chilli pot!!

For more surprises in the garden head over to Dahpnes and see what others are harvesting from around the Globe.

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Harvest Monday

When I go out to the veggie plot I don't think there will be much to pick as I haven't yet planted any seeds/seedlings (due to lack of rain) but again this week I am surprised at what has been available to harvest.

First up Cumquat's and a little Ginger which was planted in November just for fun...
They should make a nice little marmalade.
There was more Basil, just on 2 kilos.

Sweet peppers and a few Roma tomatoes.
8 small Butter-nut pumpkins, these I picked a couple of weeks ago and they have been nesting on straw in the veggie garden to ripen in the sunshine. Today they have been stored away on the veranda.
Perpetual Spinach, parsley and more mystery broccoli.

Head over to Daphne's and see what others are harvesting from their plots.

Friday, 12 April 2013

Autumn Harvest

I've been wanting to do a post on my latest Autumn Harvest but we are having heaps of trouble getting any service from Optus and when we do it only lasts for a short time........plenty of coverage at 2am in the morning but this gal need her sleep!!   So today I've driven around to our little cottage, have turned on the sprinkler and hope to get a couple of posts done before our guests arrive later this afternoon.
The Garden is looking very pretty with the beautiful Autumn colors and as I sit here the little birds are dashing in and out of the sprinkler....... and into their bird bath..........
Lots of sunny days with highs of between 22C and 28C have seen the Autumn harvest extended.
Unfortunately its been to dry to plant out seeds so there's not much coming through for the next month or so, I have been preserving and freezing alot of produce so we will enjoy some of our own produce, just not fresh.
ERK .... over the summer break I did enjoy lazing on the couch under the air-con reading and watching TV, it was much too hot to go out walking so ....yep you guessed it a few extra kilos have appeared and have to go!!
Now first of all I thought of a health retreat.....maybe the Golden Door...I deserve it !! well until I saw the price and decided I could plan my own health retreat and save myself heaps........
My morning walks are shared with the local wildlife, a black wallaby or magpie....
Alfred and Lucy too!
Breakfast on the veranda, cereal & yogurt........the Aldi coffee machine is packed away.(was so nice with thick toast, butter and marmalade!!
And to get that retreat feel I have a shower outside with the dogs watching, waiting with a stick!
There is of course another reason why I had to get moving ......Hubby's been working on his Abs(beergut) HaHa..... but guess what ? his lost quite a bit and is making me feel like a lazy slob....
Ok now for the best way to loose weight......don't go to the dentist when you know you should and then one day when you least expect it BAM the pain starts and you can't get an appointment for a week and you can't eat anything but yogurt cause your mouths too sore!!!
Yes you may laugh appointment is on Wednesday so another 4 days of strawberry yogurt and white wine.......that gets me to sleep!!
A couple of days ago when I could eat I finally made some zucchini and corn fritters, I served them with some steamed veggies and salad of rocket,cucumber and tomato.
Zucchini and Corn fritters.
In a bowl grate 2 zucchini, add small can of corn or fresh if you are lucky to have some, add a beaten egg, chopped herbs that you like and a couple of tablespoons of besan flour (chick pea flour).
I also added a chopped onion fried with garlic and cumin. Mix together.
Fry on hot skillet with olive oil .
Also nice cold the next day in a wrap with salad and Greek yogurt.
Joining with V.G and her Thursday Garden Gobbles.

Wednesday, 3 April 2013


Last spring I planted seeds of Roma tomatoes, nurtured the little seedlings along, planted them out into a well prepared bed supplied frost covers and feed them every 2 weeks.......
This week I pulled out the plants and dug down really deep into the soil.....  into quite a large rock reef so now I know why they may not of thrived although the basil and peppers have...
The one plant I have doing well is planted in another area of the garden and with these precious fruit made the most simple and tasty Italian Zuppe (soup) Pappa Al Pomadoro.
The recipe comes from one of my favourite cook books,Stephanie Alexander and Maggie Beer's Tuscan Cookbook and evokes wonderful memories of my visit to the hills of Tuscany and the simple and beautiful food I enjoyed.

 Saute 2 cloves of garlic in a little olive oil and then add about 1 kilo of chopped ripe tomatoes, 8 basil leaves chopped and a little black pepper.  Cook for 5 mins then add 1 litre of chicken stock and bring to a gentle simmer. Cut about 500gms of day old bread into 1cm cubes and add to pan, put on lid , turn down to the lowest heat and cook for 30 mins.
Season to taste and serve with a little freshly grated cheese.

Another favourite Zuppe is Minestrone which is a really easy soup to make but works best with a great home made stock with either lamb shanks or chicken bones.
You can then add what ever veggies from your plot, mine contained, green beans,capsicum,zucchini,
onion,garlic,basil,parsley, finely shredded Tuscan kale, Roma tomatoes and a hand full of pasta shells. I also added the few fresh borlotti beans which survived the summer heat.
A dollop of homemade pesto added extra flavour.
Joining in today with Veggiegobbler and her amazing Garden gobblers.