Category Archives: Harvesting & Eating

Grocery Garden Harvest Report

It’s been almost a month since the last harvest report, but that doesn’t mean we haven’t been harvesting.

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We had a stunningly beautiful harvest this past week, with gold beets, purple carrots, green beans, and more!

I’m not going to break this down by week, just lump everything all together. The lettuce and arugula are now pretty much done for the first part of the year, while we have just been pulling the biggest beets and carrots. The onions will probably be ready in a couple more weeks, and the beans are just getting started. I also expect to see ripe tomatoes by next week. 

June Harvest Report

Baby lettuce: 3.6 lbs @ $5.99 per lb = $21.56

Arugula: 17 oz. @ $5.99 per lb = $6.36

Romano Beans: 10 oz @ $4.00 per lb = $2.50

Gold Beets: 1 bunch @ $3.00 per bunch = $3.00

Red (Cylindra) Beets: 1 bunch @ $3.00 per bunch = $3.00

Yellow Carrots: 1.5 bunches @ $3.00 per bunch = $4.50

Purple Dragon Carrots: 3 bunches @ $3.00 per bunch = $9.00

Red Cippolini Onion: 2.2 oz @ $0.49 per oz = $1.07 

June Harvest Total: $50.99

Year to Date Total: $120.73

Grocery Garden Harvest Report – May 3

It’s been a couple weeks since the last harvest report, and in that time we harvested a bunch more leafy greens and the sugar snap and snow peas.

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Harvest Report for May 23, May 26, and May 30: 

  • 18 oz. of mesclun @ $5.99 per pound = $6.74
  • 40.7 oz. of baby lettuces @ $5.99 per pound = $15.20
  • 6.6 oz. of baby arugula @ $5.99 per pound = $2.47
  • 14.9 oz. of sugar snap peas @ $5.00 per pound = $4.56
  • 13.4 oz. of snow peas @ $5.00 per pound = $4.19

Two week total = $33.16

Year to Date Total = $67.24

*Fun fact: We have now harvested an equivalent value to what we spent on seeds for this garden this year!

Grocery Garden Harvest Report – May 16

I have two weeks of leafy greens harvests to report today. The Grocery Garden has green and red butterhead lettuces that are at the baby leaf stage, a mesclun that is slightly larger than baby sized, and a lettuce mix that is at baby leaf stage.

34682970686_a9f8df46bfNot a beautiful picture, I know. This is the “after” harvest shot of the Wildfire Lettuce Mix. We harvest the leaves down to almost nothing so that the plants stay smaller and the leaves more tender.

Harvest report from May 9th and May 16th: 

  • 3.4 lbs baby lettuces @ $5.99 per lb = $20.62
  • 0.86 lbs baby mesclun @ $5.99 per lb = $5.16

Total for past two weeks: $25.78

Year to Date Total = $33.98

Salad greens total up quickly, but the catch is you have to want to eat $10 worth of salad each week. That’s a lot of salad for some people!

Grocery Garden Harvest Report

The point of the Grocery Garden is to grow things that are more expensive or difficult to find in the grocery store. As we progress through the season, we are going to track our harvests and assign values to them using grocery store or farmers market prices.

This past week we harvested some baby lettuces and mesclun.

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We harvested a total of 1.4 pounds of salad greens.

1.4 lbs baby salad greens @ $5.99 per lb = $8.34

Year to Date Total = $8.34

Pepper-palooza: Pepper Recipes to Try

I finally had time to try a few recipes using some of our less common peppers in the Demo Garden. I still have a few other recipes I want to try as well.

Red Paprika Pepper Cream Sauce

I may have to plant hot paprika peppers myself, just so I can make this recipe every week. I adapted a straight red pepper cream sauce to the paprika sauce. A lot of sauces call for powdered paprika, but I wanted to try using the peppers fresh. 

  I ended up using one red bell pepper, two white sweet paprika peppers (Feher Ozon), and two red hot paprikas (Leutschauer). 

This was pretty much the easiest recipe that I never knew I was missing out on. You put two cups of cream and the chopped peppers in a saucepan. Bring it to a boil, and then reduce to a simmer. Cook until the cream is reduced by half and the peppers are soft (about 30 minutes). If you want something that is lower fat, you can use fat free half and half. (I checked with our foods agent. She also said you could use cream and just use it sparingly to accent your food, rather than drowning your food in the cream sauce.) 

Then I took a stick blender and blended it until smooth. Then I added a little salt and pepper. I served it with pasta and chicken. The hot paprikas added just the right hint of flavor and spiciness. I also tried this recipe at home with plain colored, sweet peppers. It was also tasty, but not with the same depth of flavor. 

Aji Limon Salsa

I had been looking for some good recipes to try with the Aji Limon (Lemon Drop) hot pepper all summer. A Peruvian friend said that for a true Peruvian experience, I needed to use these peppers to make ceviche. While I like fish, I’m not confident in my ability to purchase good enough quality fish in a landlocked state to make fresh ceviche. So I settled for this salsa recipe. (I also have a hot sauce recipe to try out another time.) 

This recipe called for 8 oz. of the fresh Aji Limon peppers, 8 oz. of yellow bell pepper, 2 mangoes, brown sugar, and a bunch of vinegar and lime juice. I’ll be honest…I was afraid of how hot it might be. 

The recipe didn’t say, so I decided to seed all the peppers. I chopped everything up, mixed it together, and tossed it into a saucepan. I let it cook until everything seemed soft and blendable. 

At that point, I brought back the stick blender to smooth out the lumps. 

After tasting, I would characterize this as a “hot” salsa. In other words, comparable to the heat level you might find if you buy a salsa labeled “hot.” If you regularly eat or enjoy spicy foods, this will be a nice salsa for you. If you are not into spicy foods, you will probably want to steer clear. That said, as with any salsa that contains a lot of brown sugar and mango, it is very tasty. 


Pepper Sauce

To use some of the Tabasco peppers, I was tempted to try making homemade tabasco sauce, but I decided to be kinder than that to my office mates. I settled for making a southern-style vinegar sauce.

I started with the Tabasco peppers. The fully ripe ones popped off the plant without the stems, which was handy. I washed them, and then slit them along the side.

 When working with hot peppers, I strongly recommend wearing gloves! As much of a pain as it is, it isn’t as painful as getting capsaicin everywhere I don’t want it. 

Then all I did was heat a cup and a half of white wine vinegar and pour it over the peppers in a jar. You could add garlic or peppercorns, but I decided to stay simple. I’ll give it a couple weeks to “steep” before trying the flavored vinegar.

Still to come in another post: the Espelette peppers, the Fushimi peppers, and dehydrating peppers.