Monday, September 14, 2009

Carrots, anyone?

Harvesting root vegetables after a heavy rainfall is the easy way to do a difficult task. Fred and I went out to the garden early on a drizzly Saturday morning and pulled the last of the carrots from the mud. It rained so much I sank to my ankles in the muck. The carrots don't look very pretty, but they are quite tasty and so nutritious!
The growing season is about over. We have a few sad tomatoes, a couple of little eggplants and some brussel sprouts left, but that's about it.
Fred and I tore the tops off the carrots while we were still outside and then Fred washed them off with the hose. Arielle and I cut them and washed them several more times. I saved the tiny ones to eat raw and to keep handy, and all the rest I peeled and cut up for the freezer. We now have six quarts lined up next to the corn, green beans and tomatoes, put away to keep for soups and stews this winter. I'm on the lookout for good carrot recipes.
We pulled the last of the beets a couple of weeks ago. We plant the beets for Fred. His Polish mom made beet soup when he was growing up and he loves it. I've tried her recipe and don't like it too much. But I found another GREAT recipe that even Arielle and I both liked, and we're not even beet-lovers. It's too good not to share:
4 cups water or beef broth
1 pound good beef stew meat
6 small or 3 large fresh beets, peeled and sliced in strips
1 large onion, chopped
3 potatoes, peeled and chopped
4 cups chopped cabbage
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 T. plus 1 tsp. vinegar
1/2 tsp. dry dillweed
sour cream
Brown the onions and beef and put in a big pot, along with the beets. Add water or broth and cook covered until beef and beets are nearly tender, about an hour or so. Add potatoes to the pot, cover and cook another half hour. Add the cabbage, vinegar and seasonings. Cook covered another half hour. Top with a dollop of sour cream after it is served into bowls. Good winter soup! I love having good soups in mind when it's cold and dreary outside.
"Let our sons in their youth be as grown-up plants, and our daughters as corner pillars fashioned as for a palace, let our garners be full, furnishing every kind of produce..." Psalm 144:12, 13.


Anonymous said...

Oooo... that sounds good... except I've never eaten beets. Tried turnips once and couldn't eat them. I love the way our garden carrots were all irregular and shaped in great ways. We are getting beans and that will be the last of our garden. I'm already looking forward to planning next year's.

Anonymous said...

Your blog always brings back fond childhood memories. I am also of Polish and Ukrainian and Slovak ancestry. My Ukrainian grandmother was an excellent cook (as was my Slovak grandmother). As a young girl grandmom cooked and cleaned for a rich family in Austria. Her mother and father left her and her sister in Austria, when they came to America to start a new life. When they had enough money, they brought my grandmother to the U.S. Her sister (my great aunt) never saw America. She became sick and died before grandmom came here. Grandmom also made borscht. My mouth waters just thinking about it. After my grandmother passed away, my mother would attempt to make the soup. Of course, my grandmother never used recipes to cook. My mother made the soup the best she could from memory. She was the first to admit that it did not taste like grandmom's borscht. I too have tried to replicate grandmom's recipe over the years. I have tried many recipes but none ever taste the same. I have also tried to repeat my mother's unwritten borscht recipe without much success. How I wish my grandmothers had lived long enough to teach me to cook!