Sunday, February 7, 2010

Day 6 - Harvard Beets

I "bought" California butter with my extra money today, and now I have 3 cents left. Actually, I bought it the last time I was in the valley, but didn't use it until today. I didn't really need to buy this early, since we drove right past the store on our way into town.
I got to the community garden early today, despite all the rain. I harvested a ton of vegetables and spent over 2 hours in the kitchen, cleaning, prepping, and then making a vegan soup for tomorrow's Quaker potluck. Well, I hope it's vegan. The rain brought out the critters and I found many baby slugs taking refuge in the inner celery leaves.
For breakfast, I munched on snow peas and lettuce.
For a late lunch, I enjoyed a plate of steamed snow peas, broccoli and asparagus from partner Don, topped with a bit of butter. I had a cup of the squash soup, and finished off with a mug of Peet's tea from partner Emily.
The soup for tomorrow's potluck is made from butternut squash, frozen cocozelle summer squash, potatoes, leeks, celery, carrots from partner Gaston, turnips from partner Colin, kale, chard, fennel, dehydrated habanero pepper, marjoram from partner Franklin, rosemary from partner Gert and mixed dehydrated vegetables from partner Harvey.
Over the past couple of years, I have attempted to get seeds from beet plants, with varying success. In 2009, I finally had two types of beets blooming in the backyard at the same time: Chioggia and Detroit dark red. I hand-pollinated and came up with Detroggia, I guess, Chioggia being the mom. The germination was pretty good, but unfortunately, they aren't as nice as either star parent. Despite the parentage, these beets aren't getting into Harvard. They have the conical shape of the Chioggia instead of the nice round shape of the Detroit dark red. They have the more pale red color of the Chioggia without the interesting stripes. I haven't tasted them yet, but harvested several for myself and my trading partners to trial. The greens are of high quality, matching the red of rhubarb chard.
We went out to buffet dinner with friends. I ate everything except the lettuces and celery. It was a treat to have some raisins. I had a bit of difficulty with the vegetables. They just don't taste as nutritious as my home-grown vegetables.

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