As we reached mid February, my first vegetable crop stared to come to an end. The snow peas were few and far between and the lettuce started to bolt, so it was time to harvest and start again.
I actually found it hard at first to just pull everything up and start again; I felt like I was murdering the plants. Ludicrious I know, and in the end it was actually quite cathartic to pull the roots from the soil, make food with the harvest and compost the rest. It closed the loop.
So here is what I ended up with and what I made with it all. Keep in mind I’d been harvesting all season, so I didn’t end up with piles of produce, but it was nice to find new recipes to try and know that they contained food I created with my own bare hands.
My parsley was one of the first things to bolt. I’ve had it since July/August last year so it had a really good run, but the fluctuating heat shocked it into flower. I’ve never seen a parsley plant bolt, so it was quite a sight seeing this massive branch shoot up over 1 metre high.
On the advice of the Internet and friends, I’ve been shaking the seeds into a paper bag and have also folded the stem back into the soil so more seeds will bury themselves and sprout up when they’re ready.
Parsley is one herb that I tend to forget about, so having it bolt encouraged me to actively add it to more dishes and I’m glad I did.
Despite my initial concerns, my tomato plant didn’t die – yay! The leaves continued to dry out and I still not sure exactly why, but it didn’t stop it from harvesting about 20 tomatoes over the season.
The first thing I made with the tomatoes was a simple grilled cheese sandwich made with homemade bread and my home grown tomatoes, basil and parsley. The only thing I didn’t make was the cheese (and the bread ingredients), but future goals!
I started growing these mid season, around December, but the harvest came fast so I’ve been pulling them off and using regularly.
With some of the tomatoes, I made some homemade salsa, which we munched on with some corn chips. Yum.
I kept it pretty simple and just mixed chopped tomatoes, parsley, chives and jalapeños with some lemon juice, sea salt and cracked black pepper.
Next I’m going to try making some jalapeño poppers!
I made the mistake of planting my kale in too small a pot, so it never really got big enough for me to harvest much throughout the season. Once it started to stagnate I decided to just pull it all up and cook it up.
With it I made a big batch of sauted kale with goats cheese. It was super tasty and super simple. Here’s all you need to do:
- Chop the kale nice and fine
- Heat some olive oil in a pan and then chuck in 1-3 cloves of crushed garlic (depending on how strong you like it)
- Once soft, add the kale and sauté on a medium-high heat, give it a good 10 minutes
- Once the kale it cooked, but not soggy, add a 2-3 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar and salt and pepper to taste
- Serve with goats cheese sprinkled on top
We had it with steak and them I mixed the leftovers with quinoa, broccoli stem and bacon. So good. (Forgot to take a photo of both – sorry!)
My mini capsicums (pictured above with the jalapeños, thyme and rosemary) as well as my chives, rosemary, thyme and basil are still going strong.
I’ve now planted some carrots and radishes for the move into autumn and winter. Let me know what you are starting to plant!