Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Dinner Showcase

Tonight's dinner featured several items from my garden...

Pesto with freshly picked basil tossed with Sun Gold tomatoes
The look other world-ly but they're just 'Hunger Gap' kale chips. My son's current favorite!
Flash fried 'Shishito' peppers sprinkled with kosher salt. Super tasty we almost gobbled them up before I remembered to take a picture.
I your summer garden is providing you with lots of yummy edible goodness! Bon apetit!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Sun Gold

I've been avoiding Sun Golds since I started growing my own tomatoes. "What's the big deal?" I've said to myself year after year.

Last summer, a colleague of mine left some at the greenhouse which I grew on in pots on site. I then knew what the big deal was. They ripen easily and have amazing flavor.

I decided this year to grow them in my garden and I can't get enough of them. Remember my earlier post about freaking out whether the plants were going to do anything? Well, they are doing well. My current problem is that they aren't ripening fast enough in order to keep up with our consumption!

Orange globes of goodness!
Not entirely related, but couldn't pass up sharing with you a photo of a sleepy bee on my orange hybrid dahlias this morning. When I was snapping photos of the Sun Golds, a few bees were caught dozing. When I first started gardening as an intern, I loved seeing slumbering bumblebees in the lavender early in the morning. 
It's hanging on well to that flower, but completely asleep!

Friday, July 26, 2013

Peppers II

It's been several seasons since I've grown peppers in the garden. The last time I grew Chinese 5 color pepper. Grown for their great colors--hence the name--there were red, orange and purple peppers on the same plant; I never did a taste test.

This year, Eldon, my culinary nerd and foodie husband, requested we grow Shishito peppers. I specifically ordered from Kitazawa Seeds. Having a maturity time of 60 days (75 is my cut off), I agreed to grow them. I now have quite a pepper forest between these and another variety I am growing. I actually have no idea what the plans are for these when they're ready for eating. I think he wants to do a tempura with them.

If you think these are funny looking, wait til you see the other pepper I'm growing. 'Sigaretta de Bergamo' is Italian variety that is literally "cigarette pepper" from Bergamo. Claimed to be great in salads, stir fries, and pickling. I think I'll try the pickling option.
 I ordered them from Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds. I can see how they got their name. I'm looking forward to eating both types!

Sunday, July 21, 2013


A dear friend's partner died suddenly and unexpectedly a little over a week ago.

Although I only met this person once, I could tell he was kind and caring. Little did I know he grew veggies. For how long I'm not sure, but at the memorial pepper plants were given away.

He also composed "A Garden Love Letter" back in October 2009, which was read at the memorial.

Dear pepper garden,

What a joy our journey has been. Six months ago tiny leaves elbowed through the soil and gasped for sun, and I fell smitten. Doting on you has provided me with purpose, spending hours ensuring the sun makes you warm; that your food is fine; and that your roots explore freely as you mature. By day, I sought excuses to bask with you in the summer sun; and by night, each meal consummated a celebrated union. Now, as the rains herald the chill of darker days, a stone sits in my heart. Ripe fruit makes way for molding branches. Facing imminence, seeds are sentimentally hoarded, hopeful for a future season.

Good bye and thank you dearly.

Thank you, Chris. This is exactly how I feel about growing tomatoes. I hope I do this pepper justice.