We started to harvest cool season vegetables this week. A lot of first harvest for this year! Harvested our first Italian sprouting broccoli for this year. We just steamed the broccoli and season it with salt and pepper, even the big stem under the broccoli curd was sweet and tender. First baby lettuce of 2011 which is not pretty because we had to share it with slugs but was welcome since we have not eaten any since last year. Our first home-grown purple vienna kohlrabi, never tasted one but I have not eaten it yet to comment about it. We harvested our first home-grown beetroot which is medium size and not baby beet size anymore. Steamed the beetroot and I was so surprise by how sweet it was. My first thought was it taste almost as sweet as sweet corn. We also harvested some chillies and capsicums.
We finally harvested some Ilhan first-grown sweet corns. It takes a long time for Ilhan sweet corn to mature in winter compare to summer weather. But it was worth the wait. I was thinning some Afghanistan carrot variety that we are trying for the first time to give more space for some to grow. I was surprise that some of the roots has already grown long and fat. I did not expect that it can grow that big since the soil is hard to break still and in this cold weather. One carrot was almost as big as the sweet corn size. Some roots were deformed but I don't mind as long as it is fresh and organically home-grown. We are lucky that some of the carrots were determined enough to grow bigger in our hard clay soil. Afghanistan carrots are a colourful mix of root.
I ate them fresh straight away like that after washing them. So sweet and crunchy. This is how the burgundy colour carrot root look inside.
I was clearing out one container that were growing okra burgundy plants for garlic planting. In that container I found a self-sowed leek, one leaf amaranth plant and 2 parsnips which the seeds that I did not sowed. I must have been careless and drop some parsnip seeds into this container. I never expected to get any roots when I pull out those parsnip tops. A nice surprise that in 3 months growing in this container, it has actually develop a root size that I can use to cook. So this make it official as our first home-grown parsnip harvest. Gardening is mysterious, the ones that you did not plan to grow on purpose always work much better than the ones you anticipated.
We also harvested some pink radish, yellow cherry tomatoes, snow peas and peas. Cut some rainbow chard stems and all were give-away to friends.
It took a bit longer to harvest last week. Not because I have that many harvest. But Tom the cat constantly wants my attention. He gets annoyed if I ignored him, he will walk over all my seedlings unless I stop and play with him. To my surprise when I turn to fill in my basket with veggies, Tom were in it and sitting on our chillies and tomato harvest. Not my cat but my neighbour's. It is a bit tricky with one hand patting and stroking the cat and the other hand weeds until Tom is satisfied and don't walk on the veggie patch. Tom is a very clever cat and keep rodents away from our garden since he visits frequently now. He only ask a little bit of love from us.