Sunday, August 16, 2009

A nice harvest

This is a photo of the latest harvest. The potatoes you see are all the potatoes we've dug up to date, but the onions, tomatoes, and cucumbers are all from today. This year, we are doing pretty poorly with cucumbers, possibly because of planting them in the same spot as last year, or possibly because of not getting enough light due to the pear tree, which has really grown into a shade producer, or possibly because of all the rain we got in June & July. Who knows? Meanwhile, we're getting HUGE numbers of tomatoes, at which we pretty much failed in past years.

Onions were a new choice for us this year and they did not disappoint. Some were small, some were large, but they have a fantastic, slightly sweet, slightly peppery flavor. We fried some in oil (with no breading, damn you Atkins) and they were phenomenal! I wish I knew what breed they are, they were from Home Depot so I don't have much info on them. We're definitely doing them again next year.

We started tomatoes from seed, of course, but when I was worried that they would never mature sufficiently to be planted outside I went and got 2 plants from the nursery. Those are Rutgers tomatoes, which I thought I'd try in honor of Adam and Tracy's alma mater. They are okay, they do have a nice flavor, and are moderate in size, but they have a tendency to ripen only halfway up the fruit, and then start to rot. You have to use them pretty quickly after picking them; I've put some in the window to finish ripening and they went from not-quite-ripe to bad without stopping in the middle for eating. Too bad. Meanwhile, the other variety, the ones we planted as seed, have been starting to yield big softball sized fruit which have a wonderful, sweet flavor. They taste like you hope a tomato will taste when you bite into it or slice it up. We've been eating them with home grown basil and knots of mozzarella. Yum!

The potatoes are Swedish fingerling; they ALL grew from some renegades that I failed to find when harvesting the tiny crappy almost non-harvest of last year. This crop is only finger-sized if you are Shrek! They're good sized and look like they will taste great. We can't even try them yet. After the wedding, when we can ease back on the Atkins, we can try some and see. Basically we have to give most of them away, so post a comment or email us if you want a potful.

Finally, the little "chocolate cherry tomatoes" there are actually kind of gross. They are super sweet; they don't taste like chocolate, fortunately, but they still have a flavor I'm not crazy about. They have mostly overripened on the vine because I wasn't able to tell when they were ready; one that I picked today actually burst in my hand as I was just holding it (and it wasn't a nice feeling. It kind of felt like Invasion of the Body Snatchers). Anyway, that's an experimental choice that we won't repeat.