Besides the day-to-day picking of fresh vegetables from the garden for the table, there is a lot of work to do at the minute keeping up with the mass harvests that need storing for the winter.
There have been baskets full of the runner beans which keep on cropping, and we pulled up the peas and our late crops of broad beans.
The leaves on this second sowing were succumbing to rust, but fortunately the pods and beans within were untouched; so they were shelled, blanched and put in the freezer, and the plants went into the incinerator rather than onto the compost heap, to prevent the rust overwintering.
I slow roasted several trays of tomatoes; these were sliced in half with each placed cut-side up in the trays and topped with a sliver of garlic and basil, both also from the garden. I drizzled a little olive oil over the trays and put them in the oven at a low temperature for an hour.
Inspired by thelinencat’s tomato puree-making earlier this month, I then pressed the roasted tomatoes through a nylon sieve with a metal spoon, to remove the skins and seeds, resulting in a lovely glossy smooth tomato sauce. I processed the red and yellow tomatoes separately, and decided to freeze the resulting sauces in batches for eating with pasta, or using as the base for stews and chillis in the winter, rather than cooking them further to make thicker purees.
I also took my first plunge into the world of vegetable cakes, and baked a chocolate courgette cake, gluten and dairy free. The result is a surprisingly moist delicious cake with only the barest hint of vegetable about it (betrayed by the occasional green sliver). It is going down very well with King Of The Hill.
While I’m not blessed with his cake-eating metabolism, I must confess I’ve indulged in a few slices too and found it very enjoyable. A most pleasurable way to make an indentation in the mountain of courgettes from the garden.