Saturday, May 28, 2011

'Til we till...

...our vegetable plants reside on the deck.  We bought almost everything we need for the vegetable garden last weekend.  The only thing we still need to find is zucchini.  In fact, that's on my to-do list today, and if I can't find any locally, I guess I'll look at Valley View Farm in Hunt Valley, MD when I make my way to Baltimore tomorrow morning.  

With the amount of rainy days we've had this spring, we've been hard-pressed to find a good day to rent the high-powered, super-duty tiller from United Rentals.  We're hoping to be able to rent it one day this week so we can get the soil turned and get the plants in the ground.  I am SO READY for garden-fresh veggies!

Here is what we have going into the garden:

Sunsugar Cherry Tomatoes - these were an absolute FAVORITE of many of my co-workers last summer.  I would bring in entire grocery bags full of these suckers and they would disappear almost instantly.  Some folks would just eat them like candy during the day in the office.  I don't think many Sunsugars made it home!  These are delicious in salads and for snacking.

Burpee Big Boy Tomatoes - for hamburgers and sandwiches.  Mmm...a simply sandwich of sliced tomatoes and a slight slathering of mayo on white toast...that's a little slice of summer heaven right there!

Sweet Olive Grape Tomatoes - another variety that is good for salads and for snacking.  I also have some "light" summer pasta recipes that call for grape tomatoes...looking forward to trying those out.

Cilantro - fresh salsa, anyone?  I'll have plenty of tomatoes!  And I love the smell of it.

Sweet Basil - another intoxicating smell!  I LOVE fresh sweet basil.  My favorite use for sweet basil is to slice up a ball of fresh mozzarella and do toothpick-skewers of a hunk of mozzarella, a grape or cherry tomato, and a basil leaf.  Make up a plate of those, drizzle with some EVOO, and grind some fresh black pepper on them...easy-peasy, light, summer appetizer!

Leaf Lettuce - for hamburgers, sandwiches, and salad.

Gold Rush Squash - a hybrid yellow-skinned, zucchini-type squash.  This is a new one for me; I bought it because I couldn't find regular zucchini.  I like serving a mix of green and yellow squash when I steam it up, so I think this will work nicely.  The yellow crookneck squash I've done in the past has had a horribly tough skin that I did not care for at all.

Orange King Sweet Peppers - these beauties will allegedly be orange (duh) and big (hence, "king").  We'll see...

Cantaloupe - nothing says "summer breakfast" to me more than fresh sliced cantaloupe.

Sugar Baby Watermelon - likewise, fresh sliced watermelon says "hot summer night snack" like nothing else!  I love watermelon!

Green and Yellow Beans - like green and yellow squash, I like to prepare a mix of green and yellow beans when I serve them.  Beans have done wonderfully for me over the past few years, so I am hopeful this season will be no different.

Broccoli - for snacking at lunch, in salads, and for steaming for dinner.

If you've been to/seen our garden over the last few years, you might notice we're not doing as many plants as in years past, so our overabundance of vegetables won't be the same.  Rest assured, however, we will share what we can, when we can!

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