The summer garden is now in full harvest mode, with lots of lovely vegetables and herbs to eat. I start the day with an early morning harvest walk with my colander and by next week, I'm sure I'll need a much larger vessel or perhaps several smaller harvest walks to rake in the veggie bounty.
The spring vegetables are nearly done: lettuces, garden peas, spinach and asparagus all devoured. The radishes are still hanging on strong, though. I planted a new-to-me variety from Jung Seeds, the German Giant Radish and the radishes are a beautiful deep red and have a medium heat. Best of all, they have remained free of that fibrousness that afflicts so many other radish varieties once the summer heat kicks in.
My garlic crop is almost ready to harvest. The plants loved all the spring rain we had so they grew vigorously. Now that I've lopped off and cooked up all the garlic scapes, they are starting to get yellowed leaves and tilt over, so they should be ready to pull up for curing soon.
The kitchen prep area near the sink contains my two gallon-sized compost bucket (an old joint compound container). I usually clean and cut up my garden edibles at the sink and toss the trimmings into the sink basin with all the dirty dishes to be fished out later for the compost bucket, but that's not only kind of unsightly, but it's a drag having to keep pulling vegetable matter off my plates and unscrewing the compost bucket lid when doing the dishwashing.
Lately, however, I've been using my new Rachael Ray Garbage Bowl to hold the vegetable scraps until I'm done with the cooking. I received a free Garbage Bowl from rachaelray.com and am delighted to offer my praise. It's a snazzy speckled melamine receptacle that adds a little style to my 1920s porcelain sink drainboard and it's certainly been capacious enough for all the radish beards, pepper tops, asparagus bottoms and pea pods (those that my kitchen hound Martha doesn't scarf down) I've had to process on my daily harvest walkabouts. I'm also partial to Ms. Ray, despite the fact that she adds that extra A to her first name, because she is an upstate New York native and used to delight us on the Channel 6 news with upbeat cooking segments before she became a foodie celebrity.
I actually think I may want to use my Garbage Bowl as a pretty serving bowl the next time I'm toting a salad to my next party. Just be aware that this bowl is not intended for oven or microwave use. You can find your own Garbage Bowl at major retail outlets like Target and Bed, Bath and Beyond or online at the web link above for $19.95.
Now, if I could only get some more counter space in the Crispy Kitchen, I'd be all set for the onslaught of the summer harvest. Off to the garden again to harvest some more broccoli...