Wednesday, November 20, 2013

It's Always Greener in your Neighbour's Garden

~ house mate's kale ~
 November has been a strange month in the garden. We are used to receiving the first & nastiest of our winter storms, days upon days upon days of rain & gray skies, washed out roads, possible power outages & generally ugly days.

This year it seems to be quite different - sunshine & practically perfect in fact! Actually, it feels positively like January - which is disconcerting because we are still 2 months away from that... The days have been wonderful for working in the gardens & getting those last minute chores complete.

One of them is harvesting kale for the freezer to use in the winter, just in case your plants in the garden don't make it.

Our housemate grew kale this year - first time ever & he did such a great job! He's since moved on & has left me an abundance of kale for the winter. I don't mind... I foresee a lot of kale chips in the next few months...
~ my kale ~
  My kale is starting to recover from being neglected all summer. They are actually the exact same plants as the ones in my house mate's garden bed, he just watered them while I didn't. 
~ neighbour's kale ~

 I was visiting my neighbour (see house behind me) & noticed she had a HUGE crop of kale in her garden. Much more than over in my yard & I immediately had kale envy...

Now her's was all flat leaf kale (possibly Red Russian) & I personally prefer the curly leaf variety, but since I wasn't actually going to harvest her kale for ME to enjoy, I was more envious of her ability to grow such a quantity. She's a busy lady, so I hurried over & proceeded to do a 'good neighbourly' deed - I harvested half of it for her, removed the leaves from the stalks, washed, spun dry & bagged it up for her to put in the freezer for winter dishes.
~ neighbour's kale packaged ~
  My neighbour is relatively new to eating kale so I then had to share with her (in written form of course because who is going to remember ideas for food in January?) all the wonderful potential things she can put her kale in.

Soups are the easiest & I love soups in the winter. Beef barley, turkey rice, chicken noodle, curry lentil... How about stews? Stir fries? Breads, loaves & muffins? Or the traditional Dutch treat with mashed potatoes & smoked sausage? mmmm....

I think I'll have to head outside to harvest some of mine too, just so I don't forget to eat it this winter. Oh look - the sun is shining still!

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