Monday, January 17, 2011

A colorful dinner

Last week we had a very colorful dinner, Tiffany pointed out that I had grown everything except the meat. So I got a picture for you'll. We don't eat like this every night, but when we do eat right, we get it pretty good.

I'll give a brief comment about each item, started at top (12) and working clockwise:
  • Cucumber. I don't like the taste. However noticed that if I grow a vegetable more likely to eat it because I loathe blood sweat and tears (ok over dramatic) going to waste. So I planted cucumber for the first time in years.... and found that I can [mostly] eat it. 
  • Cherry tomatoes. As previously mentioned on this blog cherry tomatoes have higher nutrient density than ordinary tomatoes as they have more sunlight per unit volume. This year I planted red, yellow and purple cherry tomatoes to get the range of colors
  • Radish. This is a heirloom variety that is purple instead of red. You can purchase (and we have done a few times this summer) red radishes in supermarket so try and grow colors you can't purchase
  • Salad greens. I wasn't going to plant any lettuce because my rational was, lets purchase lettuce from supermarket and I will provide the color/extras. However we were not purchasing/eating many salads cause lettuces were expensive due to the drought and we were not in the habit of purchasing lettuces. Therefore I planted more lettuces and it was a good move. Salad also contains beetroot leaves, mustard greens, cress and new growth of rainbow beets 
  • Maori potatoes. These are purple all the way through, so we actually get nutrients with our potatoes! I have tired growing these for two years. Not had much success. These need a long growing season and I'm not that good at it. However I have since discovered that a "normal" potato (ie round and easier to grow) that is purple has been developed by Crop and Food (?) recently. I saw the seed purple potato "seeds" for sale in Hamilton this year and will make a move to this next year. Generally speaking we don't often have potato as we don't need the starch, but it is a comfort food for us.... 
  • NZ free range lamb (which all our lamb is). 
The only obvious improvement is larger portion sizes of the salad/tomato area. This year my garden hasn't been as productive as I am breaking in a new section of soil. This is an area which needs lots of remediation so nutrients are low, thus not have flood of vege's like we would normally have at this time of year.

PS Yes it is a star plate! Tiffany was having it as she had just completed a weeks work.   

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