Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Berries and cukes

We've got a bumper crop of blackberries this summer -- the most we've ever had by far.  I think this is due to my careful desperate pruning at the beginning of the summer.  Really, after only moderately trimming them for the past nine years, the blackberry plants were taking over the backyard.  I hacked them way back just so they wouldn't swallow us up.  I guess it turns out that they really needed a good pruning.  Who knew?!

Other than eating them by the handful or topping tapioca pudding with them, I'm absolutely loving this Blackberry Gin Fizz recipe from Smitten Kitchen.  Of course, I haven't yet made anything from Deb's wonderful food blog that I didn't enjoy.  This cocktail, though, is especially delicious.  Next up, blackberry pie and syrup for pancakes.  Yum!

And check out our cucumber plants this year!  I really don't understand how we can have such an abundance with so little rain -- I don't water them much, I swear!  We've got both the pickling type and regular slicing kind for eating raw.  On Sunday the hubby set up an outdoor kitchen for me with the propane burner he uses for brewing beer, and I made a batch of bread and butter pickles.  I've made these pickles every year for at least the past five years, and they go over pretty well in our house.  We're still harvesting several cukes a day, though, so I think I'll be putting up dill spears this year, too.  What else?  Maybe a big batch of tzatziki sauce to freeze?

Ellie likes to help with the harvest... and to goof off for photos.  Here she is with a couple of the scant green beans we've had so far, (They don't even make it into the house before they're eaten raw!) and a yellow carrot from her own tiny garden.

Hope your gardens are flourishing as well!


  1. Ooo, blackberries and alcohol! I don't drink gin so I'll have to see if it works with vodka . . .

    1. Mmmm. I bet it would be tasty with vodka too. If you try it, I'd love to know how it is!

  2. Our veggies are growing like crazy too, despite the lack of water. We've got so many summer squash that we can't keep up. We're getting squashed out! So as I write this, I'm boiling a whole bunch of them to make a puree that I can keep in the freezer for soups or sauces or whatever in the winter time. I hope I have enough jars...