I’m still feeling the effects of bronchitis. I’m sure the weather hasn’t helped and it certainly hasn’t helped my ability to get harvesting done. So early last evening I pulled myself together and went to the garden. My weed infested garden.
As quickly as I could, I harvested beans, peppers and another watermelon. It doesn’t sound like a lot but I harvested several different types of peppers – jalapeno, Serrano, green, yellow and red peppers, tequila sunrise and poblano. I still have tabasco peppers to pick, but I need to preserve what I have now before I move on to that project.
Today I began shelling beans. We grew a variety of dried beans – black, pinto, lima, and red just to name a few. I primarily grew black beans as they are a staple in our house during fall and winter and it was my first attempt at growing dried beans. So far I would have to say I’m impressed and can see myself growing a large crop of different types of beans in the future. They really are easy to grow and harvest. Shelling is the most difficult part so far, but it’s really just time-consuming more than anything. An evening in front of the t.v. with a big bowl in my lap and I’m sure I could get them done 🙂
While I was shelling beans, hubby was in the kitchen pulling the cores and seeds out of jalapeno, Serrano, tequila sunrise and poblano peppers to make a hot pepper relish. Being around the pepper oils is tough anyway, but it’s especially hard when getting over bronchitis, so I was happy to let him handle that part of the process. He then peeled onions, which happened to be the worst part of the process. While he was taking care of the onions, I put the peppers thru the food processor, then the onions. After sitting in a bath of boiling salt water for 10 minutes, I drained them and added 2 1/2 cups of apple cider vinegar and 2 1/2 cups of sugar. I stirred everything together and after boiling for 20 minutes, the relish was ready to be packed in jars and put in the water bath canner for 15 minutes. We had enough for 6 1/2 jars of hot pepper relish and tried out the 1/2 jar on pulled pork sandwiches for dinner. I don’t handle hot peppers wells, but the processing and sugar really cut down on the heat and the flavor was very good. We have plenty of peppers left and will be making more jars of relish this week to fill the shelves for winter.
Unfortunately, the weather and blight ended my tomato crop for the year. I began pulling plants yesterday and will need to burn them to kill off the blight. I still have lots of jars of tomatoes from last year, so we’ll be okay, but it’s disappointing to have gotten so few tomatoes from so many plants.
My other disappointment is not getting my root vegetables planted for a fall harvest. I have never planted fall crops and wanted to give it a try this year, but life and weather wreaked havoc on my gardening aspirations.
Even with the disappointments, I learned much from gardening this year. For example, I’m going to wait until I have a larger garden area before planting watermelon again. I knew it would take a lot of space, but I under-estimated just how much space. They need their very own garden 🙂
Here is to a better garden next year!