Today's harvest

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Autumn is definitely in the air, luckily with lots of delicious fruits/veggies.
Hoping to bake my first apple cake soon.
Pumpkin risotto will be on my schedule too, along with "Tagliatelle ai porcini",and pasta with walnut sauce.

@Kathleen , they must be delicious, I bet you can make dozens of dishes using those jars.
 
Fried apples? Do tell. I have fried pears for a pasta dish, but I don't remember ever frying apples.
Fried apples are something my grandmother regularly made when the apples were ready on the trees. When I was a child, she would send my sister and I out to gather eggs. By the time we returned to the kitchen, she had biscuits, ham, and fried apples almost ready. She would fry or scramble a few eggs and breakfast was served.

There are a lot of ways to make fried apples. My grandmother would sauté apple slices with the peels still on them in a few tablespoons of butter with one tablespoon of bacon grease. (No more than a tablespoon of bacon grease per four tablespoons of butter but you can also make it without bacon grease.) (About a tablespoon of fat per large apple.) Then she would sprinkle a tablespoon or two of white or brown sugar (or a mixture of both.) Stir, stir. Then she would add a scant teaspoon of cinnamon. If the apples are dry and do not produce a syrup in the skillet, add a tablespoon or two of water. When the apples are cooked through and the sugars have dissolved, they are ready! The apples should still have a little bit of bite to them but covered in a cinnamon glaze.

I use apples with peels when they are fresh and are apples with thin peels. Otherwise, peel them. Easy side dish.
 
Kathleen, you are blessed! You come from a family of great cooks. I used your mama's refrigerator pickle recipe--a huge success--and now I'll try your grandmama's fried apple recipe with your instructions.
You are certainly keeping up the family tradition!
 
The university extension office wrote back about the freaky squash. I thought his response was informative and it makes sense.
Misshapen fruit may develop if pollination is inadequate. When pollination is incomplete, the fruit develops unevenly because the ovary wall enlarges more adjacent to fertilized seeds. Inadequate pollination may be due to low pollinator numbers or unfavorable weather. I would say our drought and heat this summer would be considered unfavorable weather.
Only if you used seeds from the fruit of your squash last year, would I suspect cross pollination issues. Most grower seeds do not have this issue, but homeowner sourced seeds can be easily crossbred and result in fruit unlike the parent plant.
Viruses are also an issue, but typically I seem them also result in reduced fruit size as well as shape deformities.
My guess is a pollination issue.
Hope this helps,
 
Kathleen, you are blessed! You come from a family of great cooks. I used your mama's refrigerator pickle recipe--a huge success--and now I'll try your grandmama's fried apple recipe with your instructions.
You are certainly keeping up the family tradition!
Thank you for saying this. My family has people who are either good all-around cooks but have no specialties (G-ma, Momma, and me), or they are average all-around cooks but are exceptional specialty cooks. (My sister is the most amazing baker and a great-aunt that made candy beyond compare. Both hated cooking anything but their specialties.)

The refrigerator pickles are in my fridge from the first cucumber to the last. I will also add other things to them from time to time. The latest batch has thinly sliced red onions, which are delicious on sandwiches and such all on their own after the pickled cucumbers have been eaten.
 
Fried apples are something my grandmother regularly made when the apples were ready on the trees. When I was a child, she would send my sister and I out to gather eggs. By the time we returned to the kitchen, she had biscuits, ham, and fried apples almost ready. She would fry or scramble a few eggs and breakfast was served.

There are a lot of ways to make fried apples. My grandmother would sauté apple slices with the peels still on them in a few tablespoons of butter with one tablespoon of bacon grease. (No more than a tablespoon of bacon grease per four tablespoons of butter but you can also make it without bacon grease.) (About a tablespoon of fat per large apple.) Then she would sprinkle a tablespoon or two of white or brown sugar (or a mixture of both.) Stir, stir. Then she would add a scant teaspoon of cinnamon. If the apples are dry and do not produce a syrup in the skillet, add a tablespoon or two of water. When the apples are cooked through and the sugars have dissolved, they are ready! The apples should still have a little bit of bite to them but covered in a cinnamon glaze.

I use apples with peels when they are fresh and are apples with thin peels. Otherwise, peel them. Easy side dish.
Are the apples whole, cut in chunks, cut in slices, ... ?
 
I had about 3 tablespoons of butter and a tablespoon of bacon grease. I used one large, one medium, and two small apples. My grandmother used wine-sap apples but mine were a mix.

Apple slices added until they are releasing liquids or starting to get a bit brownish.
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When they look as they do below, add however much sugar you wish. I added about a tablespoon of dark brown sugar and a scant sprinkle of white sugar. The apples were juicy and sweet. Let the apples cook until they are slightly limp. When apples are not juicy, a bit of water can be added to make the syrup that coats them. (About the consistency of pancake syrup.)

Finished product can be seen in today's dinner thread....once I post it.
20230928_174526.jpg
These are great as a side dish, with biscuits, on oatmeal or even over ice cream.
 
Today I harvested 11 more butternuts - still 2 almost full sized, on one plant, but green, so I left those. One is just lightening some, the other just green. Surprisingly, no other various small ones, like there usually are, which I just cut up into pieces for a curry - they're still good, even green!
Butternut harvest, 10-6, only 2 left in the garden. by pepperhead212, on Flickr

Today I sealed the ends of the first ones I harvested, with the shellac. They had dried out enough now. At first, the stems sort of "weep", and the sap eventually dries, and then I brush the shellac on.
 
@pepperhead212 they are great! I haven't had that kind of luck/skill with butternut squashes. Maybe next year. I really like butternut and use those often in my greek lemon spinach lentil soup.

I picked peppers and squashes again 2 days ago, about 20 squashes, a couple larger pumpkin type and then the rest small ones like carnival and acorn.
There's too many to winter, so I took the smallest 12 and baked them whole, then saved seeds, flesh in containers. I find these more wet than when they are opened in winter. I can put the flesh in a sieve, and reduce the liquid, before or after taking out of the freezer when making a pie. I had 4 cups after freezing my last batch, sieved it down to 3 cups for pie.
 
The last thing I did today was pick a bunch of peppers. The Datil is very productive this year - just one plant has given me all these peppers I got this year! The Joe Parker was late, but eventually, productive, and the Big Mic started early, and kept producing all season. Those Pimiendo de Pedron were slow, but once they started producing, they ripened quickly, while the other larger, mild varieties stayed green a long time. Jalapeños haven't been that great this year - I'll have to try others next season. The Thai peppers were good, as usual, and the Thai Vesuvius was the best, again. Aruna was very productive and is winding town now. Those new Maui Purples are the same, almost black color, the old Maui Purple used to be, but the peppers are better - not bitter, when ripened, and only about as hot, or a little more than Thai Vesuvius, and can be used in the same types of foods, fresh or dry. I bagged some blossoms on the largest plant, and got 2 ripe peppers inside them - I tagged them, and left them to totally ripen, before I harvest them, for the seeds.
Ripening Datil peppers, from one plant, plus some Aruna, 10-9 by pepperhead212, on Flickr

A bunch of green Joe Parker, Numex 6-4, and Big Mic peppers, and red Pimiento de Pedron by pepperhead212, on Flickr

Various Thai and Jalapeño peppers, a lot of half sized jalapeños left. 10-9 by pepperhead212, on Flickr
 
We got these washed bleach/water and drying in the house.

squash-003.jpg
 
Looks like everyone has had a pretty good year. I just picked the rest of my shishito and Hungarian wax pepper. Good about a gallon of the shishitos and about 3 - 4 gallons of Hungarian wax ( which are just too hot for me, bought them buy mistake ( mislabeled), and found out the hard way, when I took a nice ambitious bite out of one of them. I was going to give them to my chef friend, but wound up not running into him this weekend, so Ill have too find someone else to dump them on.

My basil and parsley still hanging on.

Lettuce, arugula and kale should be pickable in a week or so

Sweet potatoes and peanuts will likely be harvested over the next week or two ( when ever I get the chance, just very busy 2 weeks ( last week/ next week), so we just haven't had time , or will not have time to do it ( still trying to make time to get the garlic in).

Last thing I'll do, now that I ripped the peppers up, is transplant the healthiest of the chard ( in the peppers place) which I usually harvest early spring and make a puree or Chop and freeze, for various Indian food dishes.

I may have successfully dried and powdered some of the potatoes I've harvested. I'll probably try and make mashed potatoes this week from the powder to see how good / bad it is. If good, I'll be peeling a lot of potatoes over the next few weeks , before the sprout or go bad.
 
Larry - Very interested to see how it goes with reconstituting for mashed potatoes.

bliss - That's an awful lot of squash for two people! Trade for other stuff with your neighbours??
I like squash but find I'm don't have the effort to prepare them anymore. Especially just for one.
Occasionally I will buy pre-peeled and cut they sometimes sell at the grocers - except the price gets my knickers in a knot so I hardly enjoy.
 
I'm still getting a lot of cherries, but very few larger tomatoes. These I picked 2 days ago, and the ones in the white container were the ones just showing a hint of ripeness. Now, they are almost entirely ripe! And I did little out there today, due to the very high wind, but I saw a bunch more totally ripe ones!
Cherry tomatoes still producing. 10-15 by pepperhead212, on Flickr
 
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