Monday, September 26, 2016
Harvest Monday 26 September 2016
I finally got enough Ancho Poblanos to make a batch of chilies rellenos this week. The plants are a meter tall and very healthy, but unfortunately the weather is getting colder. It is 40 F/4.5 C this morning, which is getting uncomfortably close to freezing. The mature pepper plants can endure a little cold weather as long as we don't have a killing frost. Seems we are never lucky in that respect. Also in the pile is a Melrose sweet red pepper, a pile of Jimmy Nardello, and a ripe jalapeno.
Another boring basket of cherry tomatoes. I already had a large number of these in the refrigerator from our Acadia trip. I ran out of time to process them so I threw two bags of them in the fridge, following Mark's lead. One bag was then slow roasted and frozen. The second bag went into the blender for gazpacho, along with onions, peppers, summer squash, and a chili. I used some of the suspect red onions I had set aside, the ones with the apparent bruise on the side.
You can see the flat spot on the top of this onion. The spot is flat but does not seem soft. I don't remember dropping any of the onions, and even so the onions are rock hard and wouldn't show a mark unless they were whacked hard. In fact, they had these spots when they were harvested.
On peeling the onion, you can see the black mold growing under the skin. So it was a good idea to set these aside and not put them in the onion storage bin. The mold must have caused the flat spots by collapsing the onion cells on the surface.
Slice off the infected spot and you can see the mold has not yet penetrated the interior of the onion, so the onion is still good. I only have a few more to use up.
I also used garlic in the gazpacho and was disappointed to find some of the bulbs are already starting to soften and dry up. Unfortunately I just grabbed a bulb and did not notice which variety it was. From the same head, the two cloves at bottom right were white and juicy, the two at the top had yellowed and softened but were still used, and the clove on the left was brown and nasty and was tossed. So I have to get on with trying to preserve some more of the harvest this week. I plan to slice and dehydrate some, and I will also try roasting a number of whole heads and freezing them. I tasted one of the fermented cloves I made and it was eye opening. Very pungent but the clove was still firm and could be used in cooking.
That is what happened in my garden last week. To see what other gardeners around the world are doing, visit Dave at Our Happy Acres, our host for Harvest Monday.