Monday, February 18, 2008

More Stir-Fry Spikes, and A Pleasant Surprise

The warm weather continues to draw up delicious flower stalks from my Asian greens. I harvested a large colander full of tsatsoi leaves and flower spikes, as well as spikes from my joi choi in the hydroponic fence planters. The choi in the ground-level planters is barely starting to form central buds, as it gets less sun.

I did a very nice stir-fry with some Trader Joe's gyoza (they have both chicken and veggie, btw) in garlic and ginger slices, then added some leftover red rice and red quinoa. I rinsed the stalks and made sure there was plenty of water on them, and put them on top to steam, covered. When they turned bright green, then started to deepen in color, I added the tsatsoi and choi leaves, also dampened, with a little extra water. Another 2 or 3 minutes of steaming and everything was done beautifully. The stalks are substantial, but not crunchy or mushy, and the leaves are still squeaky.

And now for the surprise-- ripe tomatoes! I pulled my poor dead Costulato Genovese tomato bush a couple of weeks ago, as a windstorm had blown off the floating row cover and it had gotten obviously frost-bitten. I harvested the tomatoes still on it, and brought them in to fry up green. After a couple of days, though, they were clearly ripening! So I left them alone to go at it, and they ripened up beautifully. I just had a couple last night over brown rice with yellow split-peas, with broccoli and soy sauce and cheese. Yum! A nice taste of summer from the garden, long before time.

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Blogger Nicole said...

Wow, your produce looks lovely. What a pleasant surprise with the tomatoes, I grew Costuluto for the first time last year, and it was the best performing tomato I ever grew. I planted more this year. My veggie garden is now getting started, the cherry tomatoes are flowering (our tomato and veggie growing season is the opposite of those in temperate zones)

3:49 AM PST  
Blogger Iris said...

Thanks for the neat blog on some of my favorite veggies. Do you do seed saving and/or seed trading? I have been trying to find someone to trade seeds with who can share some tatsoi and joi choi seeds with me.

3:00 AM PST  
Blogger said...

Wow, you vegetables are so full and lush. I dare say they are mouth watering.

11:28 PM PST  
Blogger Deepanwita Bagchi said...

Hello Strata,
It was a pleasure reading your blog. I recently moved in to Sunnyvale from Houston, and want to start a container garden this spring. I was wondering if you could help me with what would a right time to start seedlings here, and some good places to buy saplings. Also do you recommend any plants (veggies/flowers) that do well in this region.
Thanks a lot in advance for your help.


11:10 AM PDT  
Blogger Strata said...

Hi Deepwanita,

I think you'll enjoy our gardening climate! The best resource I can think of is the Common Ground Organic gardening center in Palo Alto. Their website has planting calendars and recommendations. Find them at

Also the Santa Clara Master Gardeners run vegetable trials, and have lists of kinds that grow well here in the county.
They also have advice on kinds of fruit trees and bushes that do well here. Most citrus trees do well in containers here, for instance.

Enjoy! And come back, please, and tell us about your garden!

2:19 PM PDT  
Blogger Christa said...

Envious! Envious I am about your fresh tomatoes! Those greens look fantastic, too. Enjoy.

3:49 PM PDT  
Blogger sam said...

I was googling for Costulato Genovese tomato and came across your blog.
You have some nicest veggies I must say. What else do you plant in your garden? Chilli peppers perhaps?
Anyways, here's my blog on chilli peppers.


10:56 PM PST  

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