Thursday 16 February 2012

Of cabbages, Kings and life in the freezer.... a footnote

The cabbages in the previous entry went safely into the barn as mentioned.... and froze solid!
"We've stored our crop in the barn to protect them from the expected heavy frost this week." 
Was that a famous last word understatement or what?

 But they are cooking well still... just had some, steamed and dressed with Vigean's Fruity&Knuts, salt, pepper and some Cumin seed. Very tasty...we'll see how this one thaws out in the kitchen. Susan and Simon had one... and we've already had one other which ate well.... perhaps "Stonehead" are too close wrapped to be badly damaged.

The best for overwintering are Savoy cabbages which have a built in "bubble-wrap".

The chill did for our greens though... they look very sad. We'll clean off the dead leaves from the kales and see what comes up. The Black Tuscan and Red Russian had both been cropping well... but you never know.
We are trying to pluck up courage to go and look!

Wednesday 1 February 2012

Cabbages and Kings

With one eye on the weather forecast, we harvested our winter cabbages this weekend. Instead of growing our own from seed, in July we bought a dozen healthy little plants of "Tête de Pierre" from the grainetterie in the village - they have a lot of good plants there, as well as point-of-lay pullets to order, hunting paraphernalia, wreaths and gardening kit, et cetera. Tim is a pal* of the proprietor, having rescued and returned a bidon (jerrycan) that fell off his truck and landed in our ditch.

Tête de Pierre is sold in the UK as "Stonehead", and the description in the Kings catalogue reads "the heads are so solid you could stand on them". Both Kings and the French plant label indicate the harvest period as June to October. Well, by the end of January we'd only harvested five, the other seven standing healthily in the potager. None of them weighs less than a kilo and a couple weighed more than two.  You can peel the first few leaves but then the head is so solid you have to slice it. We've made loads of slaw, and garbure soup, and we eat cabbage cooked or raw on as many occasions as possible, unless we're visiting friends, when we abstain for a day or two to clear the air a little. I'm not a choucroute fan, unfortunately [#].

Seven fine cabbages... a right barrowfull!

We've stored our crop in the barn to protect them from the expected heavy frost this week.

[# But I am!... (picture editor)]
[ * That means I get smiles and waves!!]