Spring, and the sun is out


Borage & Broad Beans, and my carrots – that looked weird but tasted great
After a cold and wet winter, in August there was rain and lots of it –
Finally it is getting warmer and it is spring…After a bout of the ‘flu, some hectic working weeks and two short breaks away, it is back to the garden and keyboard.

I feel like my vegie patch looks… all bursting with energy and growth. The borage plants are all in bloom and attracting so many bees. The broad beans are in flower and thanks to the bees, are producing pods. The parsley which self seeded is rampant and amidst all of this wild growth I have discovered 3 coriander plants that also self seeded. My fennel is in flower again. The kale and snow peas are thriving and continue to produce enough to harvest. I enjoyed my first harvest of fennel and the remaining four bulbs are fattening up.

I have continued to cook with the seasonal brassicas: Cabbage, Cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, and Broccoli. And recently have been cooking with Brussels sprouts. I can’t understand why sprouts aren’t more popular – it is the veg that people love to hate – probably due to the way they used to be cooked, as with cabbage both of these were boiled to death and thus rendered tasteless… I love them steamed briefly and then sautéed in just a little olive oil or even sliced bacon or prosciutto until slightly charred and still retaining a crunch.
They are also great halved and roasted or lightly fried and mixed with nuts, crumbled goats cheese or fetta.

- see my recipe for one of my favourite ways with sprouts.

The spring garden is bountiful, next for harvesting is sorrel, fennel, parsley and the broad beans and I can’t wait to pick their fat pods again. The leaves too are a lovely addition to stir fries.

This week I will sow the tomato seeds saved from last year – 3 types as well as an heirloom variety that I got from my neighbour. I will remember to save some seeds of broad beans as having a very small patch I find it is a waste to buy a whole punnet of seedlings as there isn’t enough space for more than 3 or 4 plants. I did harvest some carrots last month – they were purple carrots which were orange inside. They were all misshapen and gnarly but tasted very sweet. I was also given use of my next door neighbour’s planter box which was great and is now flourishing. In this space I have mini cabbages, kale, chard, thyme, oregano, rocket and snow peas

The spring sunshine and warmer days following all the rain we recently had, have worked their magic on the vegie patch and everything is looking lovely and tasting great.