Sunday, October 2, 2011

Harvesting: Part I

A chill is in the air. We had to turn on the heater today. I had to put socks on, on the weekend. The weekend.  This also means we are getting to the end of fresh produce and herbs. Farmer's markets are getting a little more sparse (except for the crepe stand, that never goes out of season!), and I need to start thinking about putting up my herbs for the winter. Putting up? Storing? Final Harvest? Note to self: Final Harvest would make a good title for a campy apocalyptic movie. 


My tomatoes and dill have both been gone for awhile, my fancy lettuce is winding down. My lavender never grew, I think that I should have sprouted them inside first before planting them outside. Lesson learned. I am left with basil, rosemary, thyme, and chives. Whenever it stops raining I am planning on drying the last three (rosemary, thyme, and chives), but for the basil I have pesto on the brain. 


Basil has a higher moisture level than the other herbs, so while it is possible to dry it, it is a little harder, plus I had pesto on the brain. You can also freezer basil, but the idea of having a stockpile of fresh pesto all winter hanging out in my freezer. Brilliant. Pesto, pesto, pesto. 


I got less basil from my plants than I thought I would.  Just enough to make one normal size batch of pesto, instead of a super batch like I was hoping. 
  
Once again, I am cooking late at night, forgive the shadows.
Does anyone else get a huge sense of guilt from using a food processor for making pesto? I love cooking foods that have long traditions behind them. I like to make them the "traditional" way once, and after that I feel like that I can make modern day convenient tweaks. But pesto I have never made the traditional way, cutting everything by hand, like adorable little Italian grandmothers do. I really, really, really want a mortal and pestle, but I am trying to trim down my budget, and I guess that kitchen gadgets are wants, not needs. And a good mortar and pestle are not cheap.  Look at me being responsible, through gritted teeth. 




After saving a little bit of the fresh pesto for a little pesto pizza, I spooned the rest into  oiled ice cube trays and froze them for a couple hours before breaking them from the molds and placing in a Ziploc bag.








The definition of the happiness now includes have single serving size pesto popsicles in the freezer all winter long, just waiting for lazy pasta dinners.

2 comments :

  1. My most recent blog post is about the pesto I made this summer. I must have had pesto on the brain too. I had to use walnuts in place of pine nuts because I didn't have any pine nuts. It turned out pretty yummy! Great minds must think alike!

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  2. Great minds indeed! p.s. I am totally blog stalking you now.

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