Posts Tagged ‘garden

30
Jul
17

Green Chili Tomato Jam

Adapted from blog Cooking without Limits

Substituted a few ingredients for a savory chili sauce\ jam.

Rough measurements, and by taste to get a sweet\sour taste.

Very  good use for tomato and hot peppers.

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Green jalapeno peppers with seeds…  about 125 grams, processed in a food processor

white sugar……. 68 grams

apple cider vinegar …. about 51 ml

bottled lemon juice and peeled processed orange  combination ….. 2 tablespoons more or less

Tomatoes, cherry/grape type  is what I have harvested recently.

Pour the vinegar, sugar, orange and lemon juice in a pan

boil for 5 minutes, add the hot  peppers, Add tomato (amount by eye) to achieve and desired consistency.

Cook on low heat to thicken, adjust measurements if necessary, place in jar, cool and refrigerate.

Due to the size of the tomatoes, the sauce has a high concentration of seeds versus pulp. A good condiment to have on hand not only for toast etc. but a cooking ingredient for sauces and marinades.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

16
Jul
17

hydroponic update II

07/11/17

Some wilting of  some the leaves on some of the plants, could be from

  • too high a nutrient level
  • root overcrowding of the reservoir, too many plantings for the capacity of the reservoir
  • not enough aeration of the nutrients
  • inadequate flushing of the reservoir, 2 week intervals
  • too much sunlight
  • not enough air flow
  • accumulation of rainwater overfilling reservoir
  • all of the above

The tomatoes continue to bloom and ripen despite the drooping leaves, some leaves have browned,

Some of the leaves were removed  from the lower parts of the plants to promote air circulation.

Tomatoes ripen at different sizes, possibly from different nutrient mix, Open Sesame, Beastie Bloom, Cha Ching. (Fox Farm nutrients) Different stages of growth on the vine locations.

Next year, most likely less plantings, only one per net pot, only 3-4 per reservoir.

The NFT lettuce and greens system in on hold for now,  read an article on Meniscus membrane systems. Could continue during the colder months indoors or earlier.  No rush whatsoever.

07/16/2017

More of the leaves have browned and drooped or dried. Dropped nutrient level, and checked the PPM more frequently. Tomatoes  still ripening and harvesting.

07/20/2017

The PVC tomato tower was a success, plenty  of places to tie on support lines

Cut back a lot of the dried growth

Some of the tomatoes have a grape like skin and fruit

07/30/2017

  Cut back browned plants, harvested tomatoes on the vine for ripening.

Drain and cleaned out net pots , lava rock and flushed reservoir light solution of Sledgehammer. Massive root ball one one side of the reservoir .

New growth on remaining plants.

Trashed trimmed vines

The root system was so dense, I had to cut the roots of the discarded plants

Flushing of the reservoir with a weak Sledgehammer solution and clean water

Sun ripened tomatoes from the vine.


08/03/2017

 Now I trimmed down to one plant in one net pot. the plant is still growing and producing fruit. but of course the harvest will be much less. Some trimmed vine fruit is ripening off the vine. The flavor of these tomatoes are not sweet, so to speak, but have a good balanced tomato flavor that I’ve grown to enjoy. It’s difficult to get a good sweet tomato even from the store as a certain variety has to be at the peak of flavor and that is a very short time. Overall I like this type of tomato that’s  for container gardening and will grow it again. I’ve learned the limits of this setup.

Assortment of greens have been started indoors for the remainder of the summer and fall. I suppose I could start more tomatoes, but will concentrate on greens for now and develop the NFT system.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

21
Oct
16

hydroponics summer/fall

This year the outdoor  hydroponics consisted mostly  of cherry tomatoes, Burpee and High Mowing organic Bartelly F1, three plantings, though I did not track how many from each variety. Late start as they require warmer temperatures possibly a heat mat to germinate than other varieties of greens I had grown from  seeds. This was the answer though as to a better variety to grow hydroponically compared to last year as they produced grapevine like clusters of tomatoes. Trellising needs to be improved, not tall enough to support the height of the tomatoes, some stems folded and split and leafs became mottled. Late in the season trimmed lower leaves as it’s probably close the end of the growing season (outdoor). the most recent pick some were more sweeter than others but the fact the they are still growing and ripening is a plus. may also benefit from some type of trellis/plastic wrap for cool weather protection.

Overall a big improvement from last year variety of tomatohydro7

fullsize

hydro1

hydro5

hydro4

hydro3

hydro2

 

 

11
Sep
16

stuffed eggplant

Eggplant is one if those ingredients that can replaced meat or augment it. Usually I prepare one type of eggplant recipe most often, sliced , breaded, and fried, or baked. That  method requires preparation. If you follow the salt and drain routine to remove the moisture from the eggplant this is  more prep time. Occasionally viewing cooking shows on TV gave me the idea to change the routine breaded eggplant recipe.

Stuffed eggplant seemed like a straight forward recipe, remove the eggplant interior  from the eggplant, once sliced in half lengthwise, and return it to the shells after being cooked and mixed with stuffing components and baked.

 

img_0836A quick search for Lydia’s stuffed eggplant recipe gave me the starting point for the recipe. Ground chicken thighs would replace the ground beef.  Also I would being using one rather large eggplant.

No breadcrumbs were available so stubborn me, resisting the quick trip to the market to get some, made a quick biscuit recipe. Then when done, further baked  at a low heat to dry it out some what. Finally this was cut to resemble cubes of bread. This biscuit was in the form of one large round biscuit , the dough being pressed into a large diameter cake pan which fit in the microwave/convection oven.

Time wise the stuffing had be be cooled when completed so there was sufficient time to prepare the cubed bread substitute. img_0835

 

The ground chicken was cooked and then added some rice wine, another substitution as I don’t usually have white wine available as an Italian kitchen would. No green bell pepper available either.The Parmesan cheese only measured about 1/2 cup. Now the recipe was coming together, this was along the lines of a meat stuffing one would prepare for a turkey for example.

img_0851

Didn’t get any pictures when this was done from the oven but the result did remind me of a stuffing for poultry with a filling meatloaf like texture, the biscuit substitute actually better than bread due to the fact it was denser. Cherry tomatoes (we are fortunate to have a small amount of hydroponic cherry tomatoes available, more on that endeavor to be posted) also rounded out the stuffing and thyme instead of parsley, perhaps that accented the the poultry flavor with the ground chicken thighs.

All in all a good meal and as I am partial to cold meatloaf sandwiches, this meal was better the next day un-reheated.

I’m going to rework this recipe as far as the stuffing combination, rice will be used instead of the bread and it most likely will have a more spicy flair.

http://createtv.com/recipe/meat+stuffed+eggplant

 

 

 

27
Jul
16

Summer 2016

Now that the hot weather is upon us, menus have switched to meals requiring less heat indoors for preparation, except for late hour bread baking.

Here just a few meals via photos

grilled meal

rice and veggie

bread still bakes during the hot summer

simple greens

BBQ pizza

risotto with greens

take out salad

small breakfast

chicken and greens salad

hydroponics greens

Couscous and leeks

couscous, salad , topped with grated cheese

take out roasted veggies


03
Apr
16

light brunch

Just a salad for now,

salad dressing, (mayo, ketchup, horseradish, hot pepper sauce, hot pepper flakes, sugar, salt, balsamic vinegar)

sliced deviled eggs w/bacon (leftovers)

fresh greens, (lettuce, kale, tat soi.)

croutons (cubed bread, sautéed with garlic and butter.)

grape tomatoes

 

IMG_9957

IMG_9958

30
Nov
15

hydroponics review

image

 

Seeds , High Mowing Organic, Te You Flowering Brassica, Tat Soi Asian Greens, Red Russian Kale.

Lettuce, Heat wave; Burpee’s

 

image                                                              Harvested greens for salad

imageI guess that’s why they call it flowering Brassica !

The goal is to provide a year round system for growing edible greens for salad, properly planned to provide periodic  harvesting.

This would include seed starting to either full grown or baby greens. (lettuce, kale and other brassicas).

Later to expand to tall growth plants, tomatoes, peas, etc.

Indoor growth during winter months, out door during seasonable warm weather.

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A Deep Water Culture Hydroponic System

Pros:

Decreased foot print vs. soil containers, generally plants can be spaced closer vs. soil based.

Rapid growth

Little maintenance between nutrient changes ~2weeks

Healthy, disease resistance plants

Cons:

equipment initial cost  (one time purchase) maybe more costly than container soil based.

electricity requirement (air pump) ; negligible cost.

electrical mechanical device (air pump), Failure might slow the growing process till replacement.

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Hydroponic growing system remarks:

Initial equipment purchase  for a system kit: Deep Water Culture tub, top cover , net pots, growing aggregate (lava rocks), air pump, air tubing, air stone, nutrients for the first few weeks. Out of the box setup, Do It Yourself, less cost.

Refills required: nutrients, PH test paper.  pH meter (optional) , TDS meter (optional) , expansion  additional lava rocks for expansion (optional) additional net pots (optional) additional containers (optional)

A soil based system equivalent would  need : containers, soil, nutrients as required by size of plantings

If the a nutrient schedule is used for both hydroponic and soil, the nutrient cost probably would not be that different.

(An NFT Nutrient Film System might require less stored water per plant vs. Deep Water Culture but requires a water pump for circulation of nutrients in addition to the air pump.)

Weekly check of PPM nutrients and Bi weekly change of nutrients, outdoor spring and summer months require topping off of nutrients. Discarded nutrients can be used on other outdoor plantings.

So far the progress was better that previous soil based gardening, the big plus was the nutrient use and schedule which worked well with both the hydroponic and container grown plants, tomato, green and hot pepper. Some separate hydroponic containers were used (less the air pump).

 Most of the greens grown are cold tolerant so an unheated indoor space that doesn’t go below freezing can be used, when outdoors they tolerated a light frost.

Lighting for indoor growth.

Lighting with new technology L.E.D. requires much less power and space than florescent, HPS or metal halide and doesn’t require cooling in small fixtures. Red and blue L.E.D.s provide the necessary wave length for growth.

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00S2DPYQM/ref=pe_861660_150334770_fxm_3_0_n_id.

These fixtures are at reasonable cost compared to the commercial versions and so far have provided adequate light for about a 12 hour on/off cycle.

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a good hydroponic online free magazine:

(geared more towards the commercial grower)

http://www.hydroponics.com.au/issues/issue161/html5/

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http://greensensefarms.com/about/,

  Green Sense Farms is the country’s largest commercial indoor vertical farm.

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http://www.highmowingseeds.com/blog/getting-started-with-hydroponics/




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