Ember baked sweet potatoes, steamed tomato and broccoli, grilled saury, sweet potato rice, sweet potato and abura-age miso soup.
Notice the theme?
Yup. We harvested the sweet potatoes today. Well actually that's what we did in the afternoon. In the morning we planted the garlic. After K and I dug the trenches either side of the bed it was rather a quick operation as Meg and Amy were assisting. Worryingly quick actually. I am a little nervous to see the spacing once the shoots come up as I have a feeling there's some pretty friendly garlic in there sharing a berth. Oh well, we all had fun doing it.
So after garlic planting and lunch we headed outside.
As Meg said when I asked her to pose next to the sweet potato beds "Where are they?" Yup the weeds kind of got away from us a bit during the season.
But the four of us got stuck into it pulling out the metre long grass, pulling the sweet potato runners up from where they had roamed (up to three beds away from where they started) then pulled up the black plastic mulch that had protected them from cold and bugs and weeds (huh!) and finally got stuck into the actual potato digging. Both the girls are old hands at sweet potato digging from kinder and school and previous years here as well. They were quite excited to get out there and dig. But less excited by a long shot when they realised all the pre-potato digging work that needs to be done. Seems the kinder and school do all the hard work and only call the kids in for the fun bits. I get that. I'd do the same with a room full of eager kids. And I gave the girls the option of going and playing until it got fun but they stuck it out and lugged weeds and furled plastic with the best of them.
And after a few hours?
Phew! We had left the corn stalks and bean poles up as it was too hard to access with all those sweet potatoes trespassing through there but now? Beautiful, hey?
Phew! Not a bad haul, hey? The decidedly non-sweet potato thing on the left is a Brazilian pumpkin and next to that are three mini pumpkins. Sadly that was the entirety of our pumpkin haul this year. But considering that today I remembered that we had pumpkins for only the second time since planting them I think we probably deserved that small harvest. And I promised the poor spindly bedraggled plants that next season's crop will get way more TLC. Cold comfort for them, I know....
On the fire we used to burn off the mountain of dried grass/ weeds we collected up we cooked some of the broken/ sliced by the spade potatoes. Nothing like food cooked in the embers and you can't get much fresher than that- they were washed under the outside tap and never even came inside!
All in all a good day and even though it was a rather nutritionally unbalanced menu it was satisfying eating the fruits (vegetables? tubers?) of our labour.