Archive for the 'garden' Category

30
Aug
22

BRUSHETTA STYLE TOMATO BREAD WITH BROCCOLI

ANOTHER QUICK MEAL UTILIZING THE VORTEX OVEN

tomatoes from the garden

Bread, garlic paste and tomatoes prepped

ADD SHREDDED CHEESE TO BREAD THEN TOMATOES

ADDED SOME BROCCOLI TO HAVE ON THE SIDE, NOT SHOWN, SPRINKLE HERBS ON THE TOMATOES

vortex adds nice char to the brocolli

SERVE UP WITH SOME FRESH GRATED PARMESAN , DRIED ONION FLAKES ADDED TO THE BROCCOLI. (USE DEHYDRATE SETTING ON THE VORTEX WITH SLICED ONIONS). A GLASS OF WINE WOULD PAIR WITH THIS MEAL. CHEERS!

26
Jul
20

IN THE GARDEN AND OTHER PICS

THIS YEAR AS WITH THE PAST , TOMATOES ARE BEING GROWN. 2 VARIETIES , MONTESINO F1 AND SAKURA F1 FROM HIGH MOWING ORGANIC SEEDS . TOTAL OF 6 PLANTS AND THIS YEAR WITH PVC TRELLIS. SOIL BASED. STARTED INDOORS

THE MONTESINO ARE SANTA TYPE RED GRAPE TOMATO FOR FRESH EATING. HIGH YIELDS OF 1/2 OZ FRUITS IN UNIFORMLY RIPE TRUSSES. (LOOK LIKE MINIATURE ROMAS) NEW VARIETY THIS YEAR.

SAKURAS ARE FRUITS OF .5 TO .8 OUNCES ARE FLAVORFUL, BRIGHT AND CRACK RESISTANT TO SOME ROOT KNOT NEMATODE. A REPEAT FROM LAST YEAR.

SOME OF THE TRUSSES
ONE OF THE TRUSSES HAD 27 BUDS !
SOME SCRAP PVC TUBING, WEED BLOCK FABRIC AND SOME BRICKS LYING ABOUT MADE THE TOMATO GARDEN IN THE YARD WHERE IT GETS SUN FOR ALL OF THE DAY
TRELLIS IS ABOUT 7 FEET IN HEIGHT, HAD TO ADD SOME STAKED OUT RIGGING TO PREVENTING IT FROM FALLING OVER.NOTE THE DATE TIME STAMP FOR GROWTH. ALSO I TRIM THE SUCKERS FOR MORE STRAIGHT UP GROWTH
SOME HEAVY COTTON STRING TIED TO THE TOP FOR THE PLANTS NOT CLOSE TO THE PVC.
BRIGHT RED COLOR AND FLAVOR TO MATCH
YIELD OF THIS DAY
SALAD TIME ! THIS IS WHY I DON’T GO WITH STORE BOUGHT TOMATOES ! ALSO FRESH BREAD PAN BUTTER FRIED CROUTONS ATE THE WAY TO GO!
EXCELLENT TOMATOES JUST COOKED IN A SKILLET ! WITH SHRIMP, GARLIC, ONION, KALE, AND COUSCOUS, EASY AND FAST ! YES I’M IN THE SHELLS AND TAILS ON CAMP WHEN IT COMES TO SHRIMP , THE SHELLS ENHANCE THE FLAVOR IMO.
TWICE A WEEK NUTRIENT REGIMENT
SOME OF THE LOCAL WILDLIFE, AND YES THE GARDEN TOAD ALSO MADE AN APPEARANCE
STROLLING THE VILLAGE
NICE FLOWERS ALONG THE SIDEWALK IN THE VILLAGE
THE VILLAGE PARK REST STOP

THANK FOR YOUR STOPPING BY MY BLOG, ENJOY THE SUMMER!

07
Oct
19

broiled tomato with couscous

Fresh tomatoes from the yard have been a staple here this summer and  fall , I’ll try to preserve some for the winter but will miss them.

Basically short on pictures here but you get the idea, a simple meal in a sense you have pasta and sauce deconstructed . I seasoned towards Italian, oregano, parsley, dried hot pepper flakes and thyme etc. 2 variety of tomatoes. Smashed garlic and sliced onions a bit of salt and pepper blend.

Crank up the broiler, get the cast iron, you’ll want to blacken the tomato mixture with a bit of a char..   toss once or twice….

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couscous, easy and fast to cook, plate some up

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Some shredded packaged cheese Italian blend, quickly while the plate is still hot.

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were done…. Enjoy Octoberfest…….cheers

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that looks good !

 

11
Sep
19

Smoke roasted tomatoes

Peak harvest of tomatoes now, what to do ?

Nice weather so instead of using the oven indoors, fire up the smoker to roast tomatoes.

Prep the grille, a charcoal starter with fresh hardwood and a mix of leftovers from the last fire.

Mesquite pellets, a cup or two , fill the cup with water, the pellets will swell absorbing the water for maximum smoke output.

Not more than a few days from harvest, some within hours. I’ll reserve the cherry tomatoes for another use. Quartered the larger tomatoes.

Adding some garlic to the mix

Salt, fresh ground pepper blend and a few red pepper flakes.

Toss with a bit of olive oil.

Prep the perferated pan with oil to prevent sticking.

When the hardwood is ready, pour out to the charcoal pan, here at the lowest level. Add the soaked pellets, cover and let it come up to temperature. Sit the perferated pan atop and cover.

Smoking up, the hose is used to soak the ground below the grille. Avoiding flare-ups from unwanted embers from igniting anything. The bottom of the charcoal pan is screened for maximum air flow. A metal pan pan at ground level holds a small amount of water, a repurposed base from a water heater.

Oh ! I happen to have some dough around. Ready the flat bread ! A plastic mat with semolina give the dough ball bearing moveability with out sticking , like a pizza peel.

Tomatoes are done in about an half hour. The handle on the pan folds so it can fit in the grille when covered.

I did turn the tomatoes gently about 15 minutes to expose more of them to the smoke. Some took on a nice char. Set the tomatoes over a pan or plate after grilling to let the juices drain. I hand peeled the skins, just pull them off, if you like. Combine peeled tomatoes with juices. (After you sip a sample).

Added a few pieces of hardwood. Slap on the dough.

Meanwhile back at the ranch, I’m going to pulse up the tomatoes, I did eat several pieces before processing ! Looking good ! Added a pinch or two of sugar to balance , that’s all folks!

Pulsed up on the chunky side.

Since I have the grille up to temp a final addition of hardwood, might as well use it to bake a loaf of bread from the batch of dough.

Whattah think next ? ……..

……….. Of course !

The flat bread, smeared with the smokeyness of the tomato, fresh picked Russian red kale

Microplane some parm, a decorative side of sweet cherry tomatoes and kale leaf. Olive oil drizzle of course !

Crispy flat bread uuuummmm!

About 25 minutes later……..

Done! One container of tomato sauce in the freezer, the other in the fridge. Tomatoes plants still flowering.

13
May
19

Spring celebration

an Easter celebration for 2019

Thanks to Colette and Emma for hosting the dinner. Later A visit to James and Joseph’s

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11
Aug
18

Garden update

The hot weather has receded, cooler temperatures albeit humid,  scattered showers prevail. One single tomato stalk remains of the hydroponic DWC , a caterpillar munching on the last green tomatoes, as soon as this is done I will move on to most likely growing greens that will last during the fall.

The soil based tomato plant still thrives providing us with almost a daily supply.

A friend has been hanging around for a while, sharing some tomatoes with him.

Interior of the tomato stem

02
Aug
18

dried tomatoes

Now that tomato harvest is in full swing, one way of preserving them for future use is by slicing and drying them. Some suggest seasoning the tomatoes before drying, I did not.

  • Method 1 was placing the tomatoes in a parchment paper lined tray in the oven, the gas pilot keeps the oven at about 100 degrees farenheit. Very good results in about 24 hours.
  • Method 2 was placing the tray , covered with a sheet of plexiglass, in direct sunlight. The resulting water from the tomatoes was trapped so holes were drilled for ventilation. But even with the drilled holes for ventilation, the water vapor was till present. Ultimately, an enclosure should be constructed bigger than the tray alone with adequate ventilation.

I’ve  dried about 3 trays to date, of the tomatoes. Their flavor is very concentrated, the dried tomato could be processed onto a powder if necessary and the uses for dried tomato are many in recipes. Since drying is relatively easy, there is a cost savings if one would buy them outright.

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the dried result

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stored in a small mason jar, some recommend covering the dried tomato with oil.

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plexiglass covered tray for outdoor sun drying.

 

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Even with the holes drilled the moisture collects, maybe no cover at all.

In a way it’s ironic that some of the water put into the growing cycle of tomato  is removed by drying, for preservation. I don’t can tomatoes (water bath method), but if there is an oversupply not used during peak ripeness, I may blanch peel and freeze them.

02
Jul
18

Garden update

Hydroponics: same as last year even with only 2 plants , the leaves started wilting . The massive root ball seems to be too big for the size on the reservoir. Possible next year a single Dutch bucket system for each tomato plant. Shifted to a recirculating system to add more capacity to the nutrients and require less topping off as the growth rate increases the more nutrients are used some days topping off at twice  a day. I occasionally trimmed the plants of shoots , but even just two plants, they grew massive main shoots from the base and went into the budding stages quickly. Don’t know if the plants will survive and continue during the heat wave, as of now none no substantial browning of the leaves buds are intact. Overall I like the type of tomato larger than last years cherry type. We will see about the taste when ripe.  addendum: some of the shoots have regained their strength while some have browned.

Conventional gardening: One of the tomato plants, hydroponically started was transplanted to soil, a small piece of weed stop fabric was used at the base. The growth rate was a bit slower than the hydro system, but there is no signs of stress on the plant. Soil temp is of course cooler than the exposed hydro reservoir. Continued to feed and water it with about the same nutrients as the hydro system. Roughly looks about the same or a bit less fruiting than the hydro system.

If it’s July then it raspberry picking time. No maintenance per say  on the bushes in the yard.  They  have spread into 2 different areas , during the off season they were mowed with a buffer zone between them. One section receives more sun that the other. About a 15 minute pick time today at high noon heat and sun, the midday siesta broken by the occasional sound of mowers, weed wackers and blowers in the hood. Good  harvest, some berries falling from the canes as I move them,  possibly an earlier pick might have yielded more but those on the garden floor may be for the birds or propagation. Today is a 12 ounce yield. July 03 , 1 lb 5oz. July 06 1 lb, 10 3/8 oz. July 08, 1 lb. 11 oz. July 12: 1 lb 2 oz

The berry bushes , side yard, have produced some berries but they quickly disappeared , managed to eat a few while mowing the yard a week or two before. The Viking aronia have some berries may be less than last year. Two cherry bushes have blossomed one is recovering when it got ran over by driving my pickup to the rear door when the basement clean out was underway severing one of the main shoots. After nutrient feed, many base shoots have sprung.

It seems to me through the years the different type of the fruit producing plants either raspberries, tomato or bush cherries have their annual “day in the sun” as far as fruit production.

28
Oct
17

hydroponic update

pictures taken OCT 20

Even at this date the outdoor hydroponic DWC still provides us with tomatoes and also a few flowering brassica leaves and tatsoi leaves for greens. One tomato plant still going. I’ve pinched off growth of the tomatoes since any new flowers won’t have time to develop into fruit outdoors.

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flowering brassica

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flowering brassica, tomato and tatsoi

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some  green tomatoes on the vine

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a few each day are harvested as they turn ripe and a few outer leaves of the greens are used for soups and salads

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tatsoi does well hydroponically

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more greens

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meanwhile indoors, using LED lighting seeds are started

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using rockwool Grodan cubes, basil and rosemary are started with kale and tatsoi, a bit leggy on the greens, probably should heighten the lighting. These have been transferred to net pots since the picture was taken. Hydroponic works for me, unfortunately there are some who associate hydroponics with only cannabis  growing IMO.

another use for the tomatoes

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03
Oct
17

Back of the house, hydroponic update

A sunny warm beginning to October, usually cooler in the early hours now, but not that crisp colder fall weather yet.

The DWC hydroponic has produced some greens , flowering brassicas and tat soi , the tomatoes have produced grape like clusters and with the beginning of cool weather pinching back any new growth. A clear type covering to the system in consideration to extend the growing season before it’s brought indoors. The outside limit will be the temperature of course anything near freezing the DWC will moved indoors. More greens should be started indoors.


For all you hydroponic geeks out there, I usually keep the PPM nutrient level now to about 900 to 1200, at the most bi weekly nutrient flush saponin.

Bonus pictures:

A simple chicken salad , Diane’s

Toasted, morning toast with onion, garlic and ginger butter, Good Morning!

window sash




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