First freeze

The forecast warned me and I took heed. Late yesterday afternoon, a few tomatoes, radishes, and all of the mature Jalapenos and red Seranos were harvested when I went to gather hens to their pen and bring in their eggs.

While there, I also picked some komatsuna (mustard spinach) and isn’t it gorgeous. The spinach, komatsuna, kohlrabi greens, and remaining radishes would fare fine over night in the deep wooden box. The peppers were given a cover for the night in hopes of a few more in our future.

Upon waking, the world was glittering with frost, the cover on the peppers frozen in spots. It is now hanging to dry and I am going to look for some heavy plastic today to make a tunnel over them and to cover the tunnel ribs over the greens. Tonight and tomorrow night are supposed to be even colder. According to the weather blogger in our local newpaper, this is the third latest first freeze on record.

In the cold this morning, the hens coop was refreshed, a very cold, very dirty egg found under their night perches and a warm fresh egg in a nesting box. Fresh warm eggs are great handwarmers, but I needed two. I will have to start wearing work gloves and the barn coat in the mornings for a while.

Later today, when it warms up a bit, the tomato vines will be pulled and added to the compost pile, the hedge clippers used to snip them and the tomatillo plants into bits small enough to break down, perhaps turning the pile to put them in a deeper layer. The garden will rest for the winter, the solar charger turned off. The asparagus tops cut back soon. It is time for rest for the winter ahead.

Some of the produce from last night was used to make me a bowl of soup. Son 1 recently introduced me to doenjang, a fermented soybean paste. A broth was made with crushed Szechuan pepper corns, garlic, and onion sauteed in sesame oil with chicken broth added and simmered. Diced yams were cooked until nearly tender, then chives, parsley, komatsuna, and a couple teaspoons of doenjang added until the greens wilted and the paste dissolved and blended in. The soup was poured over a sliced raw radish and a sliced serano pepper. It was delicious, warming, and headclearing. There was only enough left over chili for one bowl that was served to hubby and I enjoyed the soup. Once the weather chills, I could live on soup twice a day, good thick potato, Mexican soups, beef stew, chili, and the various Asian creations based on what is on hand. The Asian creations can be made a bowl at a time in 15 minutes and can have noodles, rice, or quinoa with the veggies, sometimes a boiled egg added. Hearty, warm, and filling.

I would love to hear your comments on this post.

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