Sunday, August 31, 2014

The End of Summer Harvest

I recall the summer when we planted two zucchini plants and ended up with more zucchinis (and, therefore, more zucchini bread, baked zucchini, fried zucchini, and chopped zucchini covertly slipped into all non-zucchini dishes) than we bargained for.

This year, for reasons not fully examined, we planted not two, but four zucchini plants, which results in things like this:


Moreover, despite a slow start in early summer, our raspberry bushes are now lavishly producing, and we pick ripe berries by the bowlful.  My oldest daughter, who is more ambitious than I am, looks up websites with titles like 1000 Things to Do With Raspberries.  I bake raspberry pies with my three hand-on helpers and invent ways they each can participate in the measuring and rolling and crimping.


Then there's that one corner of the garden, that corner where my husband absentmindedly tossed a gourd late last fall after it had sat (and then withered) on our front porch as a seasonal decoration.  

Well, that little corner of the garden has sprung to life with gourds.  Almost literally.


It started off so innocently with one child's vision to create two button-eyed gourd characters.  Then it grew.  A nuclear family of gourds emerged.


The group multiplied.  A gourd grandmother, a gourd baby, a gourd ghost -- even a gourd dog -- were added into the mix. 


It's like an extended family reunion is taking place on my kitchen counter.

Eventually, the garden will stop producing and I won't need to brainstorm yet another possible way to feed my family zucchini.  We'll no longer have an influx of raspberries and fingertips stained red from their juice.  The gourds will be disassembled and tossed into the far corner of the garden, that same garden where we'll probably plant too many zucchini plants next summer, too.

But for now, we relish in the harvest.

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4 comments:

  1. You are such a great gardener and such a wonderful mother! Love the gourd family!! Also--would LOVE your pie crust recipe!! Looks delish!

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    1. You are too nice. Seriously. (The gardening is easier than the mothering, by the way. Vegetables never have opinions or tantrums.) :)

      This pie crust recipe is a winner every time: Mix 1 cup Crisco, 2 cups flour, and 1 teaspoon salt until crumbly. Mix 1/4 cup milk with 1 tablespoon vinegar. Add liquids to the flour mixture, combining until a ball forms. Makes two crusts. (Easier to roll out if it's chilled.) ENJOY!

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  2. In my freezer there are three frozen loaves of zucchini bread. (Mine is double chocolate zucchini bread, because life is short and should be celebrated whenever possible. To assuage my guilt I replaced the oil with applesauce, so it feels completely and totally healthy. Why yes, we lie best when we lie to ourselves.) VIVA LA HARVEST!

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    1. It's ENTIRELY healthy if you substitute applesauce for oil. Entirely!

      Now I'm going to need your double chocolate zucchini bread recipe...

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