Garden Goodness

 Where have I been the past eight months? I’ve been absorbed in so many things I’m even overwhelmed to describe it.  Summer ends officially today. What a bumper crop we’ve had this year in our backyard garden.

These are the cherry tomatoes called the “Sweet 100” Lycopersicum esculentum.

cherry tomatoes

The crop later in the season was much sweeter, then even one month ago.

T  green cherry tomatoes

One of my favorite recipe to make with cherry tomatoes is Lidia Bastianich’s Anna’s Spaghetti and Pesto Trapanese (Pesto alla Anna).  It is an interesting pesto that I thought of immediately today when I came home from work and saw a bowl of the cherry tomatoes that my dear husband (dh) picked. Inspired, I went to the garden to pick more ingredients.


This is my modest basil plant that I “baby” in a pot in a bright spot that stays away from the hot direct sun.

I blended all the ingredients (sans spaghetti and parmesan) in my food processor

the sauce

It makes this luscious pesto with tomatoes, basil, almonds, salt, and olive oil.

Lidia Bastianich is a master of Italian cooking so I  trust her recipes implicitly.

To make this recipe even more garden oriented, I used zucchini in place of the pasta to make it low carb.

my beautiful fresh Italian dish

Fresh picked today

Patty’s Points:

1.The recipe for the pesto itself uses only 1/2 teaspoon of salt. It is misleading how the recipe calls for

1 1/2 TBSP of salt – that is really for pasta water. This is fresh, fresh, garden fresh sauce.

2. One weekend I shredded and chopped ten monster zucchini, and spiralized five regular sized zucchini for “spaghetti”.  It was a big zucchini summer. The monster zucchini are best for shredding or chopping, removing the seeds prior to use.  Make sure the squash are not too soft or too hard, but instead firm.

zucchini quiche

Zucchini-Cheesy Quiche

savory zucchini cakes

Savory Zucchini Cakes

chocolate zucchini bread

Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread

zucchini casserole

Zucchini Casserole

zesty zucchini relish prep

Zesty Zucchini Relish

My famous chocolate zucchini cake never got it’s picture taken 😦  I’ve made six and gave away at least five.

3. The moral of the story, only plant in your garden what you can reasonably process or eat or give away. It is reasonable to plant in that way. Being the daughter of parents who lived through the Great Depression, I cringe thinking of food waste.  I’ll try to hold back the dh next year, but he loves being the happy farmer; planting until a jungle of plants appear.

This is only a small portion of the bumper crops

More to come now that my organizational skills have returned. Stay tuned.