I’m happy to report that our cabbage patch is doing well. That row cover (see June’s blog post) we used to protect it from flea beetles and other pests really worked! We now have some lovely red cabbage, kohlrabi and broccoli.
The kohlrabi is ready to harvest. If you’re new to these funny looking veggies and are curious about what to do with them, here’s some kohlrabi information and recipes.
The red cabbage still needs a few more weeks before it’s ready to harvest. When it’s done, I’m looking forward to my mom’s Braised Red Cabbage Recipe.
The broccoli is definitely ready to harvest. Broccoli is best when the head is tight, young and tender, like the one below.
If your head begins to loosen and form flowers, like the photo below, it’s starting to get over ripe and should be harvested right away. At this point, it will start blooming very quickly, and trust me, yellow flowering broccoli is not very tasty.
To harvest, simply cut the stem with a sharp knife at an angle about 4-6 inches below the main head. (By cutting at an angle, you prevent water from sitting on top of the stem and potentially causing it to rot the plant.)
After you’ve harvested the main stem, the plant will continue to grow and will produce several small heads on side shoots. These heads will only be 1-3 inches but are just as tasty as the main head.
Use your garden fresh broccoli in any of your favourite broccoli recipes. If, like one of the broccoli heads we harvested, your broccoli is a little loose and threatening to flower, use it for casseroles or cream of broccoli soup.
Here’s our favourite broccoli soup recipe that we like to serve with freshly baked cheese biscuits.
Cream of Broccoli Soup
We use whatever milk we have on hand, often 1%. For a thicker, creamier version use whole milk or even half and half cream. This soup works well no matter what your preference.
2 Tbsp canola oil
¼ cup chopped onion
2 Tbsp chopped parsley
4 cups coarsely chopped broccoli
2 cups vegetable or chicken broth
2 Tbsp chopped dill
1 cup of milk
Salt and pepper to taste
Heat canola oil in a large saucepan. Add chopped onion and sauté until soft. Add parsley, broccoli, broth and dill. Bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 20 minutes or until broccoli is soft. In food processor or with an immersion blender puree mixture until smooth. Return to saucepan and stir in milk. Season with salt and pepper. Cook over low heat until hot but not boiling. Garnish with parsley, dill or small broccoli flowerettes.
Makes 4 servings
Getty is a Professional Home Economist, mom, gardener, speaker and writer. She welcomes opportunities to share and express her passion for growing, harvesting and sharing local food with family and community.
She is the founder of Fruit Share a volunteer group that harvests and shares surplus fruit, author of the Prairie Fruit Cookbook: The Essential Guide to Picking, Preserving and Preparing Fruit and blogger at Veggie Delight a gardening blog that shares tips and ideas for growing a family garden in the prairies.