Now the weather is heating up, my crops are going completely berserk. Bunches of mangoes seem to have doubled in the last couple of weeks, pumpkin plants are definitely starting to take over a section of my yard, with many little pumpkins growing. The tomato plants have started jumping out of the ground, with lots of flowers suddenly appearing. Baby squashes and cucumbers are getting bigger by the day. Corn is starting to grow at the end of the stalks. My herbs are growing quickly and abundantly. Everything is looking healthy and happy.
But it is the beans and zucchinis that are taking up most of my time and attention. Every day I have more to pick. Every day. Over the last couple of weeks, I have picked bags and bags of beans. Purple beans, green beans, white beans. My weekend harvest consisted of cherry tomatoes, lettuce, garlic and more zucchinis and beans. Harvesting is the most rewarding part of growing my own produce and it makes me happy when I can harvest multiple varieties at the same time.
I was excited by this harvest because I was keen to make one of my favourite summer salads; broad bean, tomato and cumin seed salad from a fantastic cookbook called Falafel For Breakfast by Michael Rantissi & Kristy Frawley; with produce from my garden. You can learn about Falafel For Breakfast here. My broad beans aren’t really amounting to much at the moment, so I made it with green beans. I also used coriander, a lemon and cherry tomatoes from my garden. When I had a glut of lemons from my tree last winter, I made so many jars of preserved lemon, I lost count of how many. I still have a very large amount of jars because you can only give so many away and use preserved lemons in so many dishes. Luckily, this dish uses preserved lemons! In a couple of months, I’m looking forward to being able to also use my own chilli and spring onions (and hopefully broad beans) to make this salad.
Last week I picked about 10 radishes. I’d never pickled radish before, so I decided to give it a go. It is delicious! I think I added a bit too much chilli because it is quite hot, but delicious nonetheless. I found this recipe on Laura’s Mess. You can find the recipe here. I’m looking forward to using these pickles this summer, in different kinds of dishes.
It is so exciting to be able to use my garden produce in so many fun and different ways. I’m looking forward to trying more new things. Zucchini pickles are next!