We had our first harvest! Our plants are growing so well this season. Check them out in the fifth installment of In Our Maine Garden.
Lettuce and shishito peppers, oh my!
Our first harvest made a lovely salad. The variety of lettuce we’ve been growing (I think it’s a butter variety) has firm, bright leaves with a mild flavor. On the first night, we tossed finely torn leaves with parmesan cheese, croutons and caesar dressing for a perfect caesar salad. Since then, we’ve used the lettuce in other salads as well as thinly sliced for sprinkling on tacos and on burrito bowls. Delightful.
As for the shishito peppers, Blistered Shishito Peppers with Lemon and Sea Salt are my very favorite way to enjoy them.
We grew so much lettuce. Next year, we’ll plant it earlier and in several batches so that our harvest is a little more staggered.
The carrots are looking grander these days too. They are still weeks away from harvest, but the greens are lush now.
We’re expecting a bumper crop of green beans as well. They’ve grown substantially and there are already some skinny beans that aren’t quite ready to be harvested. They’ll be wonderful steamed, sauteed and pickled as dilly beans. I can’t wait to can some for winter.
And tomatoes! We had two ripe cherry tomatoes, which my kids Will and Paige ate right off the vine. How special it is to be able to eat something you grew immediately after picking it. I can’t wait until more are ripe.
In the next update, I will share what we’re making with the produce we’re harvesting. This year’s crop has been excellent so far — so exciting! Next year, the kids are hoping we’ll rent three boxes — one for each of us to tend our own plants.
What do you think? Should we do it?
Sarah Walker Caron is a cookbook author, freelance writer and founder of Sarah’s Cucina Bella. Her latest cookbook is The Super Easy 5-Ingredient Cookbook, published by Rockridge Press, which focuses on quick, easy, from-scratch cooking for busy people. A single mother to two kids in middle school, Sarah loves nightly family dinners, juicy tomatoes plucked fresh from the vine and lazy days on the beach. She also adores reading and traveling.