Monday, 10 October 2016

Harvest Monday - and a canoe trip

I've had a pleasantly surprising amount of harvests this week, considering the turn in weather (cold and rainy)....there's been another cucumber in the lean-to:
A few more tomatoes (also in the lean-to)...
Peppers from the lean-to and beans from the back garden (the purple French beans were a big surprise, hiding under some leaves)
A big bunch of chard from the allotment, with lots more to come
Some more summer squashes being slowly squeezed out, plus some beans
And a big bunch of Nero kale. Again there's still quite a bit more of this, which I should protect soon from the pigeons over winter (same for the chard).... Just need a dry day to do some more path cutting around them before I lay out the enviromesh.
I thought kale and butternut squash would go well together (using up my split butternut squash first) and found a nice looking stew recipe online.
The split hadn't affected the inside of the squash at all, hurrah
I would recommend the recipe, a delicious one-pot dish full of lovely spicy flavours (smoked paprika, chilli flakes, cumin, coriander). I added in turmeric as well.

A few toasted flaked almonds on top added some nice crunch.

I made another spiced apple cake this week too (using less than half the sugar, and room temp goats butter instead of oil).
I took half the cake round to a friend's house today, leaving us with the other smells amazing..mmm
Canoe trip from Norwich
It was Jan's birthday recently and some of our friends kindly gave her a voucher for a two-person canoe trip (which meant I could enjoy it too, yes). There's a firm called Pub and collect the canoe from one pub and then paddle up and down the river (stopping off at other pubs if you wish). We had a four hour session booked, which ended up as about 3 hours of paddling and an hour at a pub for lunch.
Because we went out on a Friday and it was slightly off-season there wasn't much other river traffic around, phew. Especially as to begin with we weren't very good at paddling in a straight line, oops.
It was lovely though, seeing things from a different angle (Cow Tower in the pic below) and exploring parts of the close-by countryside from the water. We saw two kingfishers fly by aswell, brill. And didn't fall in the water, double-brill.
Once we'd returned the canoe we had a little walk by the river too, and made friends with some ruddy darter (I think) dragonflies, he hee. They liked the warmth of our skin.
So back to the veggies, in the next few days I'll be looking at what'll go where this coming year (crop rotation), particularly for the autumn sown broad beans and garlic that need to go in soon. I used to plant out autumn onion sets as well, but they don't do too well for me, so now I just plant out sets in the spring. Ooh, it almost feels like spring is on the way...just got autumn and winter first (hopefully with some more harvests throughout).

Thanks for reading this week, I'm linking in as usual with Harvest Monday, kindly hosted by Dave at Our Happy Acres.




  1. I bet that canoe trip was a really good way to see things close-up and in slo-mo. Quite relaxing, I should think (though I bet you had back-ache afterwards!). Your Butternut Squash dish sounds like something I would enjoy - a classic combination of flavours too.

    1. Hi Mark, yes we both enjoyed the canoeing. It was quite relaxing especially when you got a good rhythm going together. I didn't ache too much fortunately, more arms rather than back, though at one point my back did start to hurt a bit, but a (careful not to wobble the canoe too much) shuffle of position sorted that out.
      Mmm, I'll be making that squash dish again for sure.

  2. your summer harvests just keep on giving don't they?

    1. Hi sue, yeah I think last week was a bit of a peak....not so much happening this week but I'll take a look on the plot tomorrow. I still have a lot of the veg from last week in the fridge .....I should really get cooking and use that up first.

  3. Looks like you are still getting some lovely harvests! The kale looks picture perfect. The Pub and Paddle sounds like a lot of fun. My wife likes to kayak, but so far she hasn't convinced me to try it.

    1. Thanks Dave. Some of the kale had a lot of whitefly on the undersides of the leaves but I tried to get rid of most of them on the plot, waving bunches around...must've been an interesting sight!

      Ooh you might like kayaking. I'd only canoed once years ago with an experienced canoeist but this time round we were both learning as we went really. We were lucky with the weather, so the water was very calm, plus not having much other river traffic helped us as novices. I'd be a tad nervous on a busy day, though we have lots of quiet waterways in Norfolk to explore, away from the city.

  4. Such lovely and varied harvests, especially for this time of year - that lean-to is really earning its keep!

    1. Thanks Margaret. I'm really lucky to have the lean-to :)