We've come to the end of things with my tomatoes - another small bowl full were rescued from the garden before the caterpillar calls his friends over and has a dinner party on my poor old Tiny Toms. Some of the tomatoes have splits in them which I recently read is a sign of inconsistent watering...yep, I'd go with that.
It seems that it's not only the tomatoes under siege. I'd noticed loads of small holes and chomp marks on my eggplant leaves and for the life of me could NOT identify a culprit...until now that is. Sneaky little guy hiding under a leaf. A little spider has also set up home in the eggplant but he's not eating anything other than bugs so he can stay.
I only ended with five eggplants growing and it took SO long - nearly nine months - to get them to a point where they are edible. The eggplants are so beautiful to look at that it seems a shame to cut into them...but if I don't eat them I'm pretty sure some else will! I'm not really sure how to tell when eggplants are ready to harvest but these guys seemed big enough so I risked it.
I always cut into everything I grow on the balcony as I'm paranoid about some nasty grub getting into my veggies (and also worried that someone else will get to eat the fruits of my labour). A quick slice and dice shows that these babies are all mine!
I also have two pots of basil growing - about six plants in all. They're not really doing well and to be honest I don't like the overpowering smell of it either. I've made pesto twice with my basil...but what else to do with it?
So we have eggplants, tomatoes and basil all ripe at the same time - sounds perfect for an easy eggplant parmigiana I'd say (recipe from here). The basil and tomatoes got added to a store bought jar of tomato pasta sauce and whilst the bulk of the sauce was from a shop it was nice to know that some of it was grown by me. There's also about 12kgs of cheese in there - so not a diet friendly dish (but really tasty)!
This eggplant parmigiana is another eggplant meal whipped up for the #meatFreeWeek challenge I participated in during March this year. I have to say cooking vegetarian for the week was really enjoyable and so much more easy than I thought. I didn't struggle for ideas which I thought would be my major problem and in fact could've done another week of pure vegetarian meals. Not sure The Boy could've though.
You can view more Harvest Monday posts on Daphne's Dandelions blog.