Another day another harvest. We've been picking things up in the garden pretty much every day. Right now it's peppers, cucumbers, beans and tomatoes season. Here you can see we picked cucumbers, sweet banana peppers and watermelon radish - I cut it in half so you can see why it's called 'watermelon'. Because the weather has been so hot it made these radishes very peppery but they're still quite tasty.And the banana peppers are pretty good too. The ones that are completely ripe taste like regular sweet bell pepper with nice and crunchy flesh. Some not very ripe have a touch of heat to them. Either way I'm happy with them and will definitely plant more next year as they're very prolific in their yield. And then today I went out and got whole lot more tomatoes and cucumbers with some beans and peas for snacking. Don't they look lovely?
And I know what you might think - these don't look that very big. You'd need whole lot more to do something useful other than eating in salads. Well I admit that the picture is a bit deceiving. You see, it's been taken as an overhead so I could fit all items in one shot. I took one of these tomatoes (the one top right under the cucumbers) and placed it on my hand and took a snapshot. This will give you better idea of the real size of what I picked.
As you can see it's much bigger than my hand but in the general picture it didn't look all that big. So now you can look back at others and get approximate idea of what exactly we've been picking. Trust me when I say it's more than enough for our needs. By the way, the one in my hand is Brandywine variety.
Here I took closer snapshot of them and you can see different types - Brandywines with green on edges and couple of them turned upside down so you can see how bright pink they get on the other side. Top left corner next to orange bell pepper (which is really regular size pepper but looks small comparing to Brandywines) is German Striped Cavern - with yellow stripes inside. It's somewhat hallow with a cluster of seeds inside but very tasty. Then you have two Black Prince in the middle of the picture - they're somewhat tapered at the end and have darker skin. Haven't tried them yet and will do that tonight with the salad. And of course then we have regular salad tomatoes (big boy and Martin), few plum tomatoes and cherry tomatoes.
So what do we do with all this goodness? Well I took some of the veggies that we picked before and chopped them up, tossed them on a skillet with onions and made a tomato sauce. So the plums and salad types combined with banana peppers were used up in a sauce. It came up at about 2.5 jars of sauce so we took 2 jars and canned them for winter.
My honey actually did that for me. He's pretty good at this too, did the sterilizing etc. Remaining sauce we used up with pasta for lunch/dinner. Very tasty actually. And what's really important to me is that I know it's all organic with no added preservatives or chemicals. I'm looking forward to the winter time when I cook something Italian and will be able to use my own sauce and not a store-bought. We also gave a whole bunch of tomatoes away to someone else but there are others that getting ready to ripen so I'm sure we'll be making more of these canned goodies. One thing for sure - next year I'm planting just as many tomato plants so I can do this all over again!