Tomato and Lentil Soup

Tomato and lentil soup
1 brown onion
1 carrot
a sprig thyme (optional)
1 cup lentils
a little olive oil
3 cups vegetable stock
4 tbsp chopped parsley
400g tin tomatoes
a few leaves marjoram
freshly ground black pepper
a small glass sherry (optional)
2 tbsp grated low-fat cheese (optional)

Peel and dice the onion and carrot, wash and chop thyme and was lentils. Brush a large saucepan with oil and gently fry onion, carrot and thyme for a few minutes. Add vegetable stock or water, lentils, parsley, tomato and marjoram. Season with black pepper, cover and simmer for 40 mins. Add a little sherry or grated cheese just before eating.

Inch by inch, row by row, gonna make this garden grow…

Our organic veggie garden continues to be very productive.

Our Veggie Garden

Our Veggie Garden

We’re still getting tomatoes from the same 3 plants that were so prolific back in January. Mum started picking tomatoes for us while she was looking after our girls when we went away for the week in December. We had such an abundance of tomatoes in january that she made us a huge batch of tomato relish. The plants aren’t producing in excess right now, but we’re still picking enough each week, that we really don’t feel ready to pull out the plants and reutilise the bed.
The 5 bok choy plants are still giving us more than we can use. They have been a great producer. We just go out with a big bowl and a sharp knife and cut off a bowlful of leaves and add them to whatever we’re cooking for tea. The plants are lovely and healthy and as long as we keep cutting, they keep growing and haven’t gone to seed.
Now that the weather is milder (mid-high 20’s(C) during the day and low teens overnight) the silver beet is doing really well. We have Fordhook Giant and Rainbow Chard varieteis planted. Last week I made a yummy silver beet pie (to a spinach pie recipe) with feta cheese and filo pastry. Silver beet can be a bit bitter, but if you pick te leaves while the are fairly small and young they are delicious, and most people think the coloured stem varieties are sweeter.
We had a few nice cobs of corn. Next year we need to plant more.
The first sweet corn from our garden

The first sweet corn from our garden

The beans haven’t been as successful as we would have liked, but we are getting about a handful a week from them. That bed is really under-utilised, though.
Something is eatitng our broccoli! We had a couple of nice heads growing then went out one morning and half of one of the heads had gone. The next morning that whole head was gone! A couple of days later the other forming heads had been eaten as well. We managed to pick one nice head for ourselves. We can only think that we have a possum visiting the garden at night, though it’s not eating anything else and I would have thought a possum would be interested in ripening tomatoes.
We have an abundence of chillis. Hungarian yellows, scotch bonnets, and several other varieties.
Some of the chilli peppers from our garden

Some of the chilli peppers from our garden

Most seem to be pretty high on the heat scale, so I’m staying away from those.