...Homemade Rainbows...

Thursday, January 21, 2010

excess and deficit

We're still in the thick of cucumbers here. Giant Russian cucumbers.

Our little lemon cucumber vine has succumbed to mildew (unlike our, true to description, giant Russian vine) but not after giving us basket after basket full of crispy apple like fruit to munch freshly plucked in the garden or to fill our daily salads. It's space in the garden has now been quickly occupied by some rather pretty looking red Mekong amaranth. Mmm.

The giant vine powers on carrying close to half a dozen fast maturing gold beauties at a time. All carefully bagged of course to foil that pesky Queensland fruit fly. He is not a welcome visitor at our place that's for sure...but perhaps more on that later.
And so everyday I've popped out to cradle each hard fat small football fruit in my hands and wonder, as I smile broadly with a bit of pride at my successes in the cucurbit world, just what I am really going to do with them all.
And while attending to my garden meandering yesterday and plucking said giant golden cucumbers in preparation for my solution to our small glut...our excess....I spied the other protection bag I like to cradle often in anticipation.... it held the single apple on our little apple tree. And it was glowing slightly pink through the white bag and feeling rather excitedly round and plump until alas I felt that dreaded squishy feeling on it's base. Could it be blossom end rot from all the crazy rain lately....I couldn't be sure.

But what I was sure of however was that we were going to all eat that apple nevertheless (minus the squishiness of course), and with giant bites and squeals of pleasure at our small homegrown victory and the novelty of it, we passed it from hands to hands as we did exactly that. And it was the best tasting apple containing more of our garden's excess and deficit in that one swollen fruit!

And then, with my mouth still tingly with tasty satisfaction, it was back to the kitchen and the solution to our other excess which I found here. (scroll down just a little from her Mum's first reply)
And my oh my what a solution!
With memories of being teenage and *borrowing* jars of gherkins at lunchtime from the Home Economics rooms at high school (really what was I thinking...they are barely even recognisable as cucumbers.... and that acrid vinegar...well) I made this up last night.
And this morning we played here at home in the garden with our own homemade jar of fresh pickles and sunshine accompanying us... just for snacking of course... in excess

I highly recommend this super easy recipe. And I recommend you add the sesame oil.
I used just one giant cucumber and added a bit more pickling and I used white wine vinegar.
The chilli, well, I don't have any fresh fruiting in the garden yet so I added flakes from the pantry and my little one's don't mind a bit of zing...let me tell you they have inherited their Mama's love of pickley things...but I'll leave that up to you if you try it.
Happy pickles.
I'm off to pluck out another one...or two.


Sabrina said...

Congratulations on the apple success. I can just imagine you all delightfully sharing your treasure!

And pickles...well I have a few months yet to wait for those. I'm imagining that Giant Russians wouldn't fare so well in my climate. The seed catalog just came in, so I'll have to investigate just to be sure.

littlechrissy said...

The pickles look delicious. I've recently made green mango pickle after a sneaky raid on some trees near the train lines. Yummo.

onegoldensun said...

Yum , that apple looks delish. It is fun to see your posts and remember summer for a day, since we are in the middle of winter here.

Patricia said...

That's a GIANT cucumber!!!!!
I only know the small green ones :)


Tricia said...

So many garden treats! That is one impressive cucumber and your pickles sound and look tasty. I can just imagine how much that apple was loved. Enjoy the rest of your giants :-)

Jackie @ Lilolu said...

It looks so beautiful where you are. We still have much snow and cold here in New York.

Jodi said...

If mine grow to half the cucumbers grown by you, pickles will be made!

gardenmama said...

ahhh... your banner and photos are so refreshing! we are covered in many feet of snow! homemade pickles sounds just perfect : ) xo

Madeline said...

The excess of summer is just so very sweet! I should try making pickles this year. Levi is in love with all things pickled.

Jacqui said...

Hi - I found your blog while hopping from Magic Onions. What a wonderful harvest time you are having right now. So nice to read aout summer when we are in winter. I loved your apple story.

Molly @ Star Cottage said...

Oh my goodness Cucumbers and pickly goodness! I have to try this recipe. I've been craving and eating lots of pickles. Not sure where I would find those kind of cucumbers though. We grow the regular old long skinny green ones. Love the jar. THose kind are hard to find around here unless you spend a pretty penny. We have mostly metel screwtops. Definitely not as cute as those.

Levin said...

i pickeled cucumbers one year when we had way too many. it was lovely crunching on them later in the year when cucumber season was over.
enjoy your pickles :)

Bird Bath said...

mmm, those pickles look very tasty. never though to add the chilli. I like the sound of a bit of zing in there. must grab a bag of cucumbers from the market as my vine is not doing much at all...