7 Recipes for the Fall Harvest

Chow on 10.14.11
Contributor bio | twitter

Photo: FPG/Hulton/Getty Images

While vegetable production is winding down, I stil have some produce left in my garden to harvest. Every year we learn a little more about all the ways you can mess up a vegetable garden, and by next year we should have it a bit more together. We carefully staked the tomatoes, but the stakes were tall enough or strong enough to hold up all the tomatoes, so we lost a lot of them that way. And of course, once again I made the cardinal error of planting things too close together.

When I was away this summer my daughter carefully removed all of the flowers from the basil plants to encourage growth of the foliage which we have now preserved, but totally ignored the Thai basil for some reason, so we have beautiful purple flowers and no basil to speak of. The coriander? Missing in action entirely. We do have a bumper crop of hot peppers that my son planted, though.

Photo: Kelly Rossiter

1. Kale

Photo: Kelly Rossiter

Kale is the warhorse of my garden, growing in the part of the garden where the earth is the worst and never complaining. Like parsnips, kale gets better after a frost and last year I was still picking it after it snowed. This pasta with kale and garlic is a very quick and delicious way to eat this fantastically nutritious vegetable.

2. Cherry Tomatoes

Photo: Kelly Rossiter

This was our first year trying cherry tomatoes and it was a great success. We had two different kinds and the plants were absolutely covered with tomatoes, so many in fact, that it was hard to get to them all. How wonderful to go into the backyard on a hot sunny day, pluck a mini tomato off the vine and pop it into your mouth. The perfect snack for kids in one bite. I made cherry tomato pesto which was a revelation to me.

3. Sorrel

Photo: Kelly Rossiter

Sorrel is one of those things that is easy to grow, but hard to find. You almost never see it in the market, and when you do it's quite expensive, which is crazy because it grows like a weed. I keep mine in a very big pot to keep it from invading the rest of the garden. I was so happy to discover that it is a perennial, but after a couple of years it goes to seed. One of my very favourite soups is a sorrel soup with spinach and tomato that I find completely addictive with the slightly lemony and peppery aspect to it. Writing this makes me realize that I can get another batch of soup from this sorrel before the frost.

4. Tomatoes

Photo: Kelly Rossiter

At the risk of having too many pasta recipes in this post, I can't think about tomatoes, without our wonderful linguine with tomatoes, basil and brie. This is such a rich dish that we only have it once at the height of the tomato season and then about now when we are right at the end. Then we dream about it for another 10 months. Looks like I'll be making lots of green tomato recipes in the next week.

5. Eggplant

Photo: Kelly Rossiter

We grew two smaller varieties of eggplant this year, and they were a lovely little size and adorable to look at. I still have 4 or 5 hanging on the plants, but it's getting cold, so they may not reach a mature size. Here is my take on the classic eggplant parmesan.

6. Cabbage

Photo:  Kelly Rossiter

I love cabbage and this one is a beauty, although it is very tiny. I believe I recently shared my recipe for colcannon, which is served in Ireland right around this time of year, so I'll throw in a recipe for red lentil cocnut curry, which makes enough for a crowd. It's also a great recipe for a chilly fall evening.

7. Zucchini

Photo: Kelly Rossiter

i bet you thought you could get away without a zucchini recipe. Not so fast! I actually think this may be the last year we grow zucchini, simply because I have a very small garden and it takes up a huge amount of space. In this link you get a recipe for zucchini cakes with dill and feta, plus the added bonus of a photo of my dog, Jasper with a zucchini almost his size.

More Top Recipe Guides

The Best Way To Encourage Healthy Eating: Put Fruits and Veggies in Sight
7 Recipes for Glorious Root Vegetables
7 Recipes for Fresh Fall Pumpkins