Sunday, August 16, 2015

How Our Garden Grows

Well another month has passed again without a post!  We just finished re-roofing the house, that's my one excuse and my next post.  And my second excuse is that after a slow start our vegetable garden has begun producing like crazy!  We will soon need to use a wheelbarrow to transport all the blessings being bestowed from our little patch of earth!  Pictured above is my favorite vegetable, chard!  I soak the giant leaves in water to clean away the dirt, slice them into strips, steam them, squeeze out the water, form them into palm size balls and freeze them.  It's absolutely lovely to enjoy chard sauteed in olive oil and garlic long after the vegetable garden has give up the ghost!

We purchased eight pepper plants, four yellow and four red. Of course we purchased far more than chard and peppers, but these are currently our biggest producers. The first peppers to mature were these red peppers, which we thought were bell peppers but obviously they're not. The skin is thinner, but thankfully the taste is similar. Oddly, this was not the only plant we purchased this year that produced something different than what we thought we had purchased.  Hmm...

We had a very hard rain a few days ago which left quite a few vegetables a little dirty.  I suppose I could have and maybe should have cleaned them off first but this is real life, am I right?  Sometimes it's not so pretty.  We have two round eggplant plants (that sounds so redundant) and two long eggplant plants.  So far, we've been enjoying them grilled and in pasta dishes but clearly I'm going to have to step up my game.

This is a cucumber blossom.  Directly behind it to the left, you can see the little cucumber starting.  Everything here has been growing faster than we can eat it!  Many vegetables get parboiled and then frozen, but not cucumbers.  If we're not able to enjoy them fresh, they get pickled.  One can only eat so many Greek salads in a week.  Because the tomatoes are finally starting to produce, next will be cucumber, tomato and red onion over couscous!  A slight change from Greek salads, but a change nonetheless.

These are called black tomatoes.  But they're purple, right?

 I am fairly certain that we exaggerated with the cherry tomato plants.  This is a partial shot of only ONE plant.  
We planted 12 of these plants.  We will soon be swimming in cherry tomatoes.

Nice melons, wouldn't you say?  This plant went crazy with its crawlers!  I would have to say our watermelon plants became more invasive than any zucchini plant I have ever seen.  Those of you who have ever grown zucchini, you know what I mean.  This year was our first BIG success in growing watermelons.  We planted two types, these little round ones and the standard large, and they are both so delicious and sweet that we serve them as dessert!  I never thought I would see the day that I serve fruit as dessert, but it's happened.  Figs are up next so stay tuned, there might even be a recipe for a baked good!  Or I just might serve them fresh on a plate as dessert. (wink)