Mid-June Allotment Harvest

Okay, I’m bragging, but we’re thrilled with the haul we’re getting from 201, given that we only took it over in October 2008.

We can’t take credit for the strawberries, because they were in place before we got our plot, but the broad beans, peas, sweet peas, radishes and rhubarb are all products of our labour since last autumn!

The broad beans have been a bit of a disappointment – they aren’t cropping nearly as heavily as the overwintered beans that we planted on 235 because the spring-planted seedlings have been hideously attacked by blackfly. So we’ve learnt our lesson for next year: even if the mice do take a few seeds over the winter, it’s much better to plant them in situ because they don’t get the problem with blackfly that the spring planted ones do.

The peas are delicious though, and so far only one batch has made it to the saucepan, all the others have been eaten straight out of the pod. We are pea gluttons and no mistake.

The rhubarb hasn’t produced heavily this year, which is not surprising given that we only transplanted it in November, but it’s very tasty and didn’t bolt in May like the more established rhubarb on other people’s plots did.

So, time for a recipe?

Rhubarb and Strawberry Pudding

6 sticks rhubarb, cut into chunks
250 grams strawberries, hulled and halved
250 grams caster sugar in two 125 gram amounts
75 grams butter or margarine
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
150 grams plain flour mixed with 1 teaspoon baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
150 ml milk

While the oven is getting to 180 C or gas 4, grease a large square baking dish, wash fruit if necessary, and put in a bowl with 125 grams of sugar, stirring until fruit and sugar are well mixed. I like to use lemon verbena sugar for this recipe (just put some lemon verbena leaves in a jar with white caster sugar and store for around a month, shaking every couple of days to get a lovely lemony scent and savour).

Then pour them into the baking dish and spread them out evenly. Beat the rest of the sugar with the fat and add the egg and vanilla before alternating additions of milk and big spoonfuls of flour. Beat until smooth and pour the batter over the fruit. Should cook in around an hour, or when a skewer pushed into the centre comes out clean. Lovely with cream or thick yoghurt and equally good hot or cold. This is not a neat and tidy pudding though, so don’t expect it to look posh, even if it tastes scrummy.

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Posted by The Allotment Blogger on Friday, June 19, 2009


Anonymous Helen T said...

I really don't like rhubarb, but this recipe almost convinces me to give it another try! This has to be better than the stewed stuff we got in school!

June 30, 2009 at 1:36 PM  

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