Pumpkin Delight

I brought this delightful vegetable home from allotment.

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It’s such a lovely pumpkin.  I’m quite pleased considering it’s the first time I’ve tried growing pumpkins.  They’re definitely going on the list of ‘Things to Grow’ for next year.  I think I might have a go one or two other varieties of squashes as well.

The orange beauty is 5.5kg.  So far it’s made two batches of Pumpkin Soup, a Pumpkin Risotto and a Pumpkin and Raison tea loaf from River Cottage Veg Every Day, which was lovely and very tasty (you can find the recipe here if you don’t have access to the book).  It’s one I’m planning to make again but with beetroot instead of pumpkin as that is supposed to create a purple marble effect in the cake which sounds fun.

I’ve still got about a quarter of the pumpkin left, not to mention the two other pumpkins still on the allotment and seven butternut squashes…

Any squash recipe ideas?

Broccoli – Old & New

In with the new…

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I’m growing a summer purple sprouting variety.  I’m starting it indoors, along with a few other seeds as I’m desperate to start sowing stuff but common sense is telling me that it’s still too cold to sow outside for most things.

And I’d say out with the old, but I’ve still got plenty of broccoli growing on the plot.

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I’m not sure of the exact variety as they were donated to me, but I know they’re a white sprouting variety which takes around 44 weeks to crop.  For ages I thought it was a failed crop but I left it in as it was keeping the weeds down.  I didn’t realise that they had such a long growing period!

I’m enjoying eating something fresh at a time of year when I don’t have anything to harvest on the plot besides herbs but I need to find more interesting ways of cooking it other than boiling or steaming.  Otherwise, my freezer will soon be full of broccoli!

In other news, I finished the top I started last Monday.  Pictures to come soon!

 

New Greenery

It’s been so very cold here recently that there isn’t much activity on the plot yet.

The only crop I’ve planted is some garlic.  I’ve read you’re supposed to plant them on the shortest day of the year but I didn’t put my cloves in the ground until mid-February, hopefully that won’t make too much difference.  With the wet and cold weather we’ve had I really didn’t expect them to do anything but I had a pleasant surprise when I visited the allotment at the weekend.  First new plant to grow on the allotment this year!

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I didn’t grow garlic last year so it’ll be interesting to see how well it does.  I nearly bought elephant garlic at the garden centre because giant garlic sounds fun, so if this is a success I know what I’ll be trying next year!

Year Two

It’s hard to believe that I’ve had my allotment for just over a year now.  The plot is like a blank canvas at the moment and its exciting to think about the possibilities this year.  Without the time consuming (and tiring!) jobs of digging over a vacant weedy plot, putting up a shed and creating paths I’m hoping it’ll be less of a frantic rush to get seeds into the ground and more thought out.

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I’m planning a lot for this year.  I’m going to try some new vegetables; cucumber, garlic, kale and squash as well as favourites from last year like spinach, broad beans and courgettes.  I also want to try some new varieties so I’m sowing red onions and shallots alongside the regular ones and purple green beans (I’m still a little disappointed they turn green when  you cook them though).  Hopefully, I’ll have more successes than failures but the hardest bit right now is waiting for the weather to warm up so I can get started!