Summer harvest begins

As we pass midsummer the harvest in the garden and allotment is really getting into full flow. The soft fruits are appearing: raspberries, redcurrants, strawberries and even some cherries this year, rescued from the tree before the blackbirds got to them.

All this bounty is helping me towards my target of sixty different harvestable fruits, vegetables, herbs and weeds to celebrate my sixtieth birthday. I’ve now passed the half way point and am reasonably optimistic that I’ll meet my target – for an update see here

As well as all the summer fruits, the overwintered broad beans are producing great fat pods just now and I’ve harvested my overwintered red onions. I put all of this together for a garden stew for tonight’s tea: broad beans, onions, mint, tarragon and lemon verbena all from the garden. I cooked this up along with a different kind of harvest – some rather sad shop bought vegetables which were languishing in the bottom of the fridge: leeks, celery, spinach and some rather elderly potatoes from the vegetable box. It all went into a rather good green stew:

Here’s a stab at a recipe

Green stew (or soup)

  • Onions*
  • Leeks
  • Celery
  • Potatoes
  • Broad Beans*
  • Spinach
  • Tarragon*
  • Mint
  • Lemon Verbena

*the only essential ingredients – everything else should be based on whatever green things are in your garden or fridge

  1. Chop and saute the onions, leeks and celery
  2. Chop the potatoes into bite sized chunks and add to the stew
  3. Cook slowly for a few minutes
  4. Add water or stock to cover and simmer until the potatoes are cooked
  5. Add the chopped herbs
  6. At the last minute add the broad beans and cook until just tender

To make green soup, add more stock or water and blitz the whole lot in a food processor before adding the broad beans.

I love green soup – for me the essential ingredients are onions, broad beans and tarragon but really you can make it out of anything fresh and green in the garden or lingering at the bottom of your fridge. It’s exciting to think that we are moving into green soup season.

6 thoughts on “Summer harvest begins

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