As we move into mid-August, the garden is groaning under the weight of all that needs to be picked, eaten, and preserved. My harvests are getting larger but seeing my kitchen island covered with homegrown produce- well, that never gets old. Here are some of the meals and preserves I've been making along with recipe links.
A really wide variety of vegetables are ready right now and I've been making meals that include a little bit of everything like a sausage, bean and vegetable chilli, most of which I froze for the winter.
Frittata is another great way to use up a lot of produce and this one I made with veggies, cheddar cheese and homemade lemon basil pesto.
Soup is another way to use up a little of this and that and my Vegetable and Bacon Chowda is a perfect summer soup.
As the tomatoes are finally starting to ripen, I made a batch of Roasted Tomato and Zucchini Soup this week as well.
All of my potatoes could be harvested now, which is a little overwhelming, but I'm working on the Blue Adirondacks and digging up just what I need. Blue home fries were a hit with the frittata and there is nothing like a freshly dug spud.
One of my big gardening successes this year is growing Alpine Strawberries from seed. The plants are really thriving and fruiting well. Although they are very small, these berries pack a lot of flavor, but I'm learning that they need to be eaten quickly once picked or they turn nasty.
I've been baking some of them in muffins (no chopping required!) and they are delicious. I'm adding about a cup and a half of berries to a basic muffin recipe that yields 12 muffins. The berries' flavor is so strong I'm not adding any other flavoring except a teaspoon of vanilla.
Finally, the pickling cucumber plants I'm growing in containers produced enough cukes for my first batch of dill pickles. I used dill seed from last year's plants for the seasoning and preserved them in a water bath.
There is a lot of work still ahead before the growing season comes to a close but the freezer and pantry are starting to fill up and that is satisfying indeed.
What are you doing with your produce?