Monday, October 27, 2008

Daily Harvest

Guess what is for dinner!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Daily harvest

I can't believe it is almost the end of October and we are still eating like this!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Bees retrospective

Here is a photo of Kim and me looking in the hive earlier this summer.

On the right is a photo looking down into the hive.

Here is one of the frames lifted out of the box. We are looking to see how well our queen is laying and for signs of mites. We have been treating them for mites in a couple of different ways and they have been steadily decreasing.

Daily harvest - honey!

This afternoon Kim and I opened the hive and had a look around. I have been getting kind of freaked by the bees reciently and really wanted to be calm and lovely with them today.
The bees really understand intention and good energy and when I was peacefully going about my work of rooting through their home with my sharp metal tool they rose up, clung to my shirt and stung their little hearts out. Damn. Maybe next time I will get over my little bee phobia.
We removed a drone frame and cut out some honey comb. The hive is still too new to really harvest the honey, but every month or so we can get a little sample. It is always a little different because of what is in bloom in our neighborhood.
This time tasted darker than before and a I thought it had a little bit of that stinky taste of buckwheat honey.
We put the cut honey comb into a funnel with cheese cloth, mash it up and then wait.


This is the honey!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

condiment madness

chutney from green tomatoes
ketchup from red

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Monday, October 20, 2008

Daily Harvest

I love mustard!

Daily Harvest

This cat is in love with Jonathan.
The weather is getting cooler and we wonder if the tomatoes might start to rot. We picked some green and had fried green tomatoes for dinner. Today's cucumber was delicious I can't believe we are getting sweet cucumbers in late October!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Other people's trees

Today we went to Sebastopol with Rosalie to see her mom, Nora, who had just opened a show of her art. We spent the afternoon picnic-ing in her lush garden, looking at her paintings, and then ended our trip by picking pears and grapes from her home orchard.

Recently Nora has been making a series of intricate puppets, and then making paintings based on them. My favorite puppet was a regal, ancient looking owl who seemed to be dressed in royal robes. Jonathan and I both loved her cephalopod painting which was full of tentacles and waves and in the middle had these very human eyes staring at you from out of a squid.

The grapes are mostly purple Concords with a couple of white Concords, which I had never had before. Nora has no idea what kind of pears these are, but they do very well there, and are tasty, so she is trying to find out. Any leads on pear identification would be appreciated!

Other people's trees

Yesterday our lovely friends Carlos and Duffy offered us figs off of their tree. We love figs and while we have a fig tree, it is knee high and does not yet understand its purpose in the world. We were very excited to be offered someone else's figs! Duffy and I sat around amusing their baby and Jonathan and Carlos picked figs.

We biked home after our lovely visit with them to find... someone had left beautiful ripe yellow figs on our porch! This photo is from breakfast, featuring both colors of figs together!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Daily Harvest

Tomatoes and basil going to a party for Jonathan's basketball team.

Not pictured was the jar of home made ketchup!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Daily Harvest

Here is our lovely model Jonathan demonstrating the sheer quantity of the mustard pictured on the right.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Daily Harvest

We took it to our baby niece!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Daily Harvest

I love our red wrigglers. They take our kitchen scraps and nothing else and turn them into this wonderful compost. I was preparing a new garden bed this evening after work and the bottom tray of our wiggly ranch was all broken down and ready to be used. It is so beautiful!

Here is today's harvest and here is Roxanne helping make tonight's salad.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Daily Harvest

We came home late from the airport from our weekend trip to Seattle. There wasn't really anything in the fridge, so we went out into the night and brought back this little harvest to make veggie wraps. Garden saves the day!

These are the first of the fall peas.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Daily Harvest

I picked all of this before going to school. It all became my lunch!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Daily Harvest

An only egg, an only egg.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Daily Harvest

Today as we were harvesting, a neighbor leaned over the fence to talk about our garden. She asked who built the chicken coop and if we were growing habanero peppers. She said she was getting ready to make a garden too, but wanted to grow mostly medicinal plants. Just the idea of it made me hungry.
Jonathan gave her a bunch of mustard. It is so young and tender right now that you can eat it raw. Today for lunch at school I had a big salad of mustard greens, tomatoes, arugula and a boiled egg, all from the yard.

Quail Drama

Today I heard a distressed noise from the quail. I went back to see what was wrong, thinking maybe a cat were bothering them. Instead there was a hawk sitting on top of the cage! I think it was a cooper's hawk. The quail have been good for our wildlife viewing opportunities- they've attracted possums, raccoons, and now this hawk. Stay safe little peepers!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Daily Harvest

I keep thinking that the tomatoes are almost done tomato-ing. Then I go out, just to grab a few for a salad, and I can't stop picking! To get a sense of the size of our tomato issue, look at the picture below that I took with my hand for scale with two of the larger tomatoes. Or look at how tiny the eggs look above! I wonder what percentage tomato I am. I am going to start washing and slicing and roasting right now!

Two of the larger tomatoes with hand for scale!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Daily Harvest

Last night was the first rain of this year's wet season. Our resulting harvest was one full rain barrel! Most of the rain fell in the night and this morning I was so surprised to see that it had filled the barrel. I think that these barrels are 55 gallons.

Here is today's harvest from the garden. I added my hand for scale.

Tomato Retrospective

The tomatoes started ripening late this year, but once they stared coming in we were inundated!

Without a scale I can't start to estimate poundage, but it seems like every time we go out we can fill our biggest mixing bowls and cover the kitchen counter. We planted 16 plants this year in a bed that had just been occupied by our chicken tractor. The tomatoes loved it. We have dehydrated tomatoes, frozen sauce, frozen roasted tomatoes, canned chutney, frozen chutney, and lived almost exclusively off of tomatoes for two months now.

The big yellow one that you can see Jonathan holding above was the winner of this summer's garden. Our one plant made around 20 of those bigguns. We took a smallish one to the farmer's market to see if anyone knew what kind it was and to weigh it. No one knew, but we got good advice on seed saving so we can have it again next year, and the tomato weighed in at 1.5 pounds! At the pricey Berkeley Farmers Market that could have cost us $4.50! Times 20, times the enjoyment of watching it grow times the fun of the tomato search when we harvested! The real benefit of the Farmer's Market: making me feel smug.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Daily Harvest

I felt like today's harvest was like a little poem:

Round round round (yellow)
round round (smooth)

Jonathan suggested:

three wee cucumbers
ripen still in October
and two chicken eggs.