Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Final rocoto harvest

Summer and the chile pepper jungle on the balcony feels distant. But I have had some plants left, waiting for the pods to mature.

Today it was time. To pick the last pods on my rocoto and rocopica.

The rocoto has been living on the floor in our living room the last couple of weeks. It was too big to move.

I was positively surprised. I picked 35 pods on one plant! Doesn't this look great?

So now we have 1,626 kg rocoto to eat.

Do you have any nice recipes to share?

Hot regards,

Sunday, 24 October 2010

Hot sauce

Inspired from a conversation with Rune a couple of weeks ago, and from Patrik yesterday, I decided to make a hot sauce of my tiny tiny chinense fruits.

It took me well over and hour to remove the stems from the fruits. Talk about mindfulness. One pod at a time. Just being there present in the now :-)

Here they are, getting ready to be processed.

These fruits have a very tropical flavour, so I added the juice from a couple of limes and some salt. And some water. I put it all in a saucepan and let it simmer for a couple of minutes.

And here is the final result. A super hot, super good all purpose sauce. Great on everything!

I'm not sure for how long this sauce keeps fresh, since I don't use any preservatives. Except for the lime juice and salt. Thanks Marco and Patrik for bringing this up :-)

Have a hot week!

Ashwagandha "harvest"

It's funny. I have looked at the fruits on my ashwagandha, but I didn't think they contained any seeds or berries. They look like physalis and tomatillo, hiding the fruits inside.

Today I felt adventurous and picked the pods that looked ripe and opened them. And I was surprised to find small red fruits inside.

Here we have Carl helping me :-)

And this is how the pods and fruits look like.

I wonder if they are edible, and/or what they are good for. Anyone who knows?

Now I know. Don't eat the fruits. The seeds have some poisonous properties. Seeds and flowers are used in some medicinal preparation as diuretic and to
coagulate milk. Mostly the roots and leaves are used in ayurvedic medicine. Roots are dried and powdered.

Saturday, 23 October 2010

Fenugreek harvest

This is the "harvest" from growing fenugreek this year. Well, not that it's a huge effort, but I must say that I expected some more.

Fenugreek is a great spice that I use in more and more cooking.

The seeds are used as a spice, and the green leaves are used as a herb. I use the green leaves with chicken and fish. It is commonly used in ayurvedic cooking because of its cleansing properties.

Friday, 22 October 2010

Refried beans from the crazy jalapeño chef

Friday evening, and I have cooked my favorite refried beans together with some nachos.

Here is a recipe that you can try instead of buying cans with refried beans.

Refried beans
2-3 hg beans. I use red large beans that I cook for about 1,5 hours.
1 medium onion
Chiles to taste
Cooking oil

I put the chile peppers, onion and garlic in my mixer, and chop it fine. I put the mix in a warm frying pan, cooking it until the onions are soft / transparent.

Then I put the beans in the mixer and chop them fine. I put the chopped beans in the pan, stirring, adding some water and let them cook for 20-30 minutes.

At the end I add salt to taste.

It's really easy to do, and they beans taste really great!

And - best of all, you can use any chiles you want. Today I used one of the yellow burkinas that we got from Kaili last Sunday. Super hot :-)


It is working :-)

Days like this, especially when we have early snow, the chile pepper growing season feels very distant. This is how it looked this morning...

So, it makes me extra happy to see the progress in my ZENGROW. My "test" basil, peppermint and tulsi are doing fine. I have added the first nutrition tablet, and the small plants are developing very nicely.

Have a hot weekend!

Sunday, 17 October 2010

Closing "Het Höst"

Today was the last day of the "Het Höst" exhibition. We were a bunch of growers gathering after the closing, to either collect our plants, or just to pick the fruits.

Here we have Carl getting ready to pick our chilipiquin pods.

Patrik is in heaven. Like a child in a toy store? :-)


Kaili, Patrik & Carl.

I sampled a rocopica, and entertained my surroundings with a good attack of hickups. I never seem to learn :-) Or maybe, I don't want to learn!

Thanks to Kaili, Patrik & Mia and everyone who made this exhibition possible.

Monday, 11 October 2010

Capsicum chacoense

One of my favorites. Yes, I know. I say that about many chile pepper varieties. This one is a beauty.

Small pods with good heat and peppery taste. The pods fall off easily.

More pictures here:

Our Indian from Goa

My Indian from Goa was finally ready to be picked. I have to admit it, I'm not that fond of Capsicum annuum, but this one is special to me. Probably because I enjoyed Goa so much. We were there in 2008 for a two weeks yoga retreat.

I remember stopping at the road, asking a woman who sold vegetables for chile peppers. She didn't have any, but asked her son to run to their home and get some dried "house-peppers", and those were the ones that I bought. It's a nice story, and now they are growing in my home.
More pictures here:

And some pictures from Goa :-) Starting with a picture of a chile pepper. I think they bring luck!


Sunday, 10 October 2010

Olho de pombo

Olho de pombo stood out from the beginning this year. It was a beauty with dark stems, and it was severly broken during a storm in May (

But it recovered and produced lots of pods. Not very easy to get a good picture of the pods, since they are quite well hidden under the leaves. Here I got a shot of our house spider. We call him Janne Långben (Jan Longleg).

And here are some pods. The almost look like coffee beans.

A nice harvest. The pods were hot, with a typical chinense flavor.

Ay caramba! They were hot!

I'm writing this with my burning fingers. I have been in the kitchen taking care of the chiles today. Saving seeds and drying, making powder. Big fun!

I grew the prik dae luang for the first time this year. It's a Capsicum frutescens. Just looking at the pods made me suspect that they were how. Quite big pods, thin flesh, "juicy". Like big tabascos. They had that special kind of self confidence that some chile peppers seem to have.

Taking a bite was really painful. This kind of "mean" heat, that just doesn't let go. Massaging the tongue. Really hot ones.
Honestly, I don't think they had any specific taste. Just the strong mean heat, so I will make a really mean powder of them. They are drying right now, waiting to become powder. Powder is good, makes it easier not to not use too much of the good stuff.

Have a great week!

Saturday, 9 October 2010

Twin dedo de moça

Some pods are more interesting than others. Here is my twin dedo de moça.

A new project

Yesterday I got my ZENGROW, a "tabletop garden".

So today my new project started. I took cuttings from my tulsi, basil and peppermint and placed them in the device. I have many more ideas what to grow in it, but in order to get some experience I think this is the perfect start.

I will keep you updated on the progress.

Have a nice weekend!

Monday, 4 October 2010

Thank you for these two years - Tabasco

I'm sort of half-panicking about how to reclaim the space in the flat... So after the dedo de moça and habanero, it was time to say bye bye to the tabasco.

It's really a very nice plant. But it was too big. So it had to go. But Capsicum frutescens is good. It has the "peppery" taste, quite high heat, and I love the way it attacks my tongue. It's not like any other Capsicum. This heat is in a way "mean", massaging your tongue, not letting go.

The question. What to do with the harvested peppers. I think I will dry most of them. The thin flesh of the tabasco makes it not so suitable for freezing, so it will be great to dry. But I think I will put some of them in vinegar and/or oil for future use. Nice problems :-)

Tabasco chiles on a tabasco tray :-)

Have a nice week!

Hot regards,

Sunday, 3 October 2010

Another day at Het Höst

We couldn't stay away today. While Patricia is on a business trip, Carl and I decided to go out to Bergianska. Here we are just outside.

Me and Apan (Monkey) outside, in front of the magnificent Capsicum pubescens.

We went inside to say hello to my good old chilepiquin. I'm sure it doesn't miss our home at all, with all the new chile pepper friends. Not to mention how well Kaili takes care of all these plants :-) Here it is, and I was happy to see some new ripe pods.

A basket with hot stuff.

Carl is tall, but this baccatum is taller :-)

 Here we are, Mats, Patrik & Kaili. (Yes, it's Apan in my pocket :-)

One of Carls favorites. He's becoming a good chile pepper photographer :-)

Maybe it's hard to see on this picture, but look at all the different colours and shapes. It's beautiful!

More beauty :-)

And a canario, one of my favorites. Yes, I know, I call many varieties for my favorite. But it's true!

More beauty!

And more ....

And more ... :-)

Carl checking the size of this pumpkin...

I don't remember what this is, but the light made them very special.

Our friend Apan taking a break on the way home.