The Return of Inventory on the Menu this Monday
Eat Local November and Beyond
Roast peppers. That’s what you do in the November kitchen, right? Well, after roasting cauliflower and zucchini, and slow cooking some broccoli with the secret ingredient (a/k/a anchovies) this weekend , I have some time blocked off this week for roasting peppers. That’s how I’m getting this Local Family ready for winter.
“I like that list you do of all the stuff you’re storing.”
That was Michael Morowitz to me many years ago when we were planning and establishing the Beet. Perhaps, in retrospect he was saying do less recipes and more lists, this being well before he sold his idea of building a website around 11 ways to list lists to Buzzfeed, but regardless of the statements deeper meanings, I always relish the fact that someone noticed. People ask, people have asked, how can you remain a Local Family given our climate. The answer never changes. We find things to buy year-round, and we store local food to have year-round. Getting that answer and wallowing in the details, though, are two different things. Yes it can be done. Look how it is being done. I will add, the mix between stored and store bought changes year to year, and has especially altered with the launch a few years ago of Tomato Mountain‘s twelve month CSA. Things will be even different this year with the addition of Local Foods and Sugar Beet-Coop to the mix. Put it this way, we have no good excuses not to be a Local Family.
There is such a thing as keeper tomatoes, but the time we tried doing that it did not really work. Most of then turned mushy or otherwise rotten while we were still using up our “regular” tomatoes. Tops in my inventory then are a whole bunch of tomatoes to be eaten. This is one of three plates we have in the dining room of tomatoes. We have the final tomatoes that came in our CSA, and the last two weekends, I made a point of being generous in my tomato purchases. Yes, a freeze hit a few weeks ago stopping tomato production. That freeze did not kill what was already ready. Stocking up may seem like an exercise in being ready for the worst. I guess the worst to me is having no more tomatoes.
The emphasis of my inventory remains backwards, towards warmer weeks. It is there because I never tire of peppers, cukes and zukes, and any decent tomato. It is also there, as today’s El Nino driven weather shows, because it’s really not time yet to put-away. We have no root cellar yet. Our inventory right now is spread around the bungalow and out to the garage. Besides the tomatoes, here’s what else we have put aside right now–that is here’s what we have right now that’s meant for the longer term; there’s things like eggplants, collard greens, lettuce that we plan on eating soon:
- Tomatoes – 3 platters worth
- Acorn squash – 5
- Spaghetti squash – 1
- Bell peppers – 1 large platter
- Hot peppers – 1 big bowl
Kitchen – All in decent quantities
- Sweet potatoes
- Shunkyo radishes
Basement Canning Room
- Onions/Garlic/Shallots – A lot
- Potatoes – about 10 lbss
- Fortune apples (for baking) – 12
- Kohlrabi – about 8 good ones
- Hakuri turnips – tons
- Red cabbage – 2
- White cabbage – 1
- Grapes – 1/2 bushel
- Apples – 1 bushel of various keeper apples
- Whole roasted tomatoes – Tomato Mountain
- Various jams and jellies
- Misc items in freezer – We have not made any efforts to freeze vegetables this year. I’ll come back to this in another post.
What have you put aside for later eating?
*One of the Local Family works for Tomato Mountain.