Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Garden Post 3#

So far I've had the pleasure of cooking with my silver beet, a half dozen lettuces, and the first of the tomatoes (which it must be admitted were a disappointment flavour-wise and may have to be used green instead in a fresh chutney or pickle). The self seeded amaranths have been transferred from between the bricks in the back courtyard where they display remarkable tenacity in sprouting up annually, and are now happily shooting up (one has sprung up under the side fence and is growing triffid-like beside the foothpath, where it has recently been joined by a vagrant self-seeded cherry tomato, which I have decided not to attempt to transplant but will string up on the fence as an offering when in fruit to passing neighbours and strangers).

Self-seeded purslane, chick weed and the inevitable dandelions are also enjoying pushing up and out post the early summer rains. The chickweed is a good addition to a snake bean or leaf mallung, the dandelions will go for salads, and the purslane is being given a second chance to prove its worth having been a major disappointment texture and flavourwise last year - I tried it out as a mallung and it was not altogether a success, so I will try it as a white curry this time round and see if that improves its profile in my foraging stores.

The passionfruit vining all over the paperbark on the footpath looks set to give me a massive harvest and my mind is turning to passionfruit ice cream if I can get the newly purchase Cuisinart ice cream maker to function  - my first attempt at a frozen berry yoghurt was more a slushy than anything else, delicious but not what I had in mind and attracted a snicker or two from its intended dinner guests while being nonetheless slurped down.

The aubergines are flowering, as are the other cherry tomatoes, and there is still life in some lettuces though I will to a re-stock when Isabella is back at the markets at the end of January. Marilyn's zucchini has given us three gourds so far, and the pumpkins are busily crawling. The karawilla/bittergourd is avidly climbing, heading straight for a grapple with the virginia creeper coming the other way, but I have great hopes for it.