Friday, October 22, 2010

Changing Seasons

I've been busy since Monday. Tuesday I canned the last of the ripe tomatoes. The green tomatoes that I stripped off about a month ago were either ripe or ready to get tossed. I'd slowly been collecting the remaining tomatoes in the freezer. This was my last canning session of the year. I could use a few more jars of applesauce, but I don't think I'm making anymore. Canning season is over. And just when it starts getting colder and I could use the heat in the house.

My meals have been changing too. Above is what I liked eating during the summer. I have a really nice toaster oven that bakes very well. It puts out very little heat so it works great for baked goods during the summer.

Those tomatoes I use are fast disappearing. A frost was predicted for last night (never materialized) and tonight. So I picked off all the tomatoes from the Cherokee Purple plant. And any that were starting to turn from the cherry tomato plant. I'll have very few fresh tomato pizzas anymore. In addition the basil is turning a horrible brown color so no more basil either. Goodbye summer food.

Now I want something to warm myself during the day. Lunches have been soups all week long. I've been very sad not to have Chinese cabbage this fall. One of my favorite soups is Chinese cabbage soup. Tis the season to be eating it, but with the lack of a planting space in July or early August, it just never happened. My garden was just too small this year. So I only planted the fast maturing Asian greens.

Yesterday I was checking out the greens patch and had to harvest more Chinese broccoli, but I also had a couple of heads of bok choy that were bolting. They are still quite edible at this stage. I even like the stem which was very thick on these. I peel the stem and the inner part is very tender. I was thinking a stir fry was in order, then I remembered my soup. I figured that bok choy isn't all that far from Chinese cabbage - at least the stems aren't. So I made bok choy soup instead.

It wasn't as good as my regular version, but it wasn't bad at all. I like the texture of the Chinese cabbage better as it holds up to cooking more than the greens do, but it was very tasty.


  1. Both meals look wonderful as does the bok choy! I am planning to start some more greens (under lights in the shop) and keep a steadier supply of them going into the greenhouse this winter and coming early spring. Bok Choy being one of the crops that are well suited to that with their fast growth and good production per square foot of growing area.

  2. You're right about the bok choy. I've noticed it has a stronger flavor when bolting but is still edible unlike lettuce, which is good since they tend to bolt like crazy this time of year!

    BTW - that soup look delicious!

  3. Good job on the canning, I've done my share of that as well.

  4. That pizza looks good so does the chinese cabbage soup! Yummy.

  5. It all looks so good, Daphne. You amaze me with all that you do! I need to learn to can, but getting the garden up and going needs to happen first, of course! Happy fall to you.


  6. Your bok choy looks great and the soup looks good too! You inspire me - I'm going to buy some canning jars/pots/etc and try canning my tomato harvest this winter.

  7. I love the chinese cabbage soup. Good for fall! I am hungry right now=(

  8. Frugal Gardner, thanks

    Laura, they do have a very high production per square foot. I've really got them crammed in their right now. But each time I harvest I make more room for the smaller ones. These were about 6 oz each and didn't have all that much space at all.

    Thomas, I like the flavor of this particular bok choy when it bolts. The green ones don't seem to be quite as sweet.

    Merdehuit, thanks.

    Meemsnyc, thanks

    Tessa, wow its been a long time since I've heard from you. I hope things are going well.

    A Kitchen Garden in Maui, good luck with your canning. The Ball Blue Book is sort of the canner's bible.

    Daphne, me too, but I haven't eaten breakfast yet. It's nice to meet another Daphne out there.

  9. I am so sick of tomatoes right now. LOL! I never thought I would say that, but too am dealing with green ones ripening a little at a time. These are washed and frozen for later sauce making.

    Your bok choy looks beautiful. I am hoping to have more success with this in the spring.

  10. Good looking canning output and meals! One of these days I might add bok choy to the growing mix; but I may need more growing space!

  11. That pizza looks so yummy. I ripped my tomatoes out today, but I have a bucket of greens waiting to be canned into salsa or relish. No frost for us yet either, looks like things may be warming up this week!

  12. GrafixMuse, I've heard a lot of that this year. I can't believe how good the season was.

    Foodgardenkitchen, that is how I felt, so I moved to a small yard and made a huge garden. At least I don't have to take care of much of the rest of the yard.

    Kelly, I keep wondering if I should have kept the tomatoes on, but no better not to have to worry about them. It is the end of October for goodness sake.

  13. That pizza looks delicious! Did you make the crust?

  14. Yes it is the same dough that I keep in the fridge all the time. And the same that I use for my grilled or fry bread.

    2c flour, 2c ww flour, T yeast, T salt, 2c water. Sometimes I add a tablespoon or two of olive oil too.

  15. Great dishes simply delicious and mouth watering please provide more such good recipe.