Saturday, March 08, 2008

Baby Vegetables & Adventure Dining

Working up an appetite: We cross-country skied along a lantern lit path to this Mongolian yurt, a 4-star restaurant, buried in snow.
As I was nibbling my way through 1 amazing dinner, I started thinking about the cute and oh so yummy miniature vegetables on my plate.

Can I grow these in my own garden?

Seed companies don't promote these delicacies but the short answer is: yes, you can. It's not as simple as harvesting big veggies early. That wrecks the flavor. Miniatures grow faster, are quite delicious, ideal for containers, cute as a button!

Mini Red Bell Peppers grow to a whopping 1.5 inches in size. 60 days.

Lemon Cucumbers: sweet, round golf ball size cukes do well in the mountains because they need less heat to ripen.

Chires Baby Sweet Corn: matures in about 75 days on short stalks. With baby sweet corn, you can eat the cobs, too.

Red Fig Tomatoes: little 1 inch pear-shaped heirlooms that date back to the 1700's. (There are tons of tiny tomato choices. I was searching for a rare one.)

Cocozelle Bush Zucchini: matures in 60 days and is harvested between 3 and 5 inches in length.

Haogen Melon: matures in 85 days. Bitsy 1-pound fruits have a citrus and pineapple flavor.

* These might seem like odd choices. I was basically following chef's orders. If you live in lower altitudes, you have many more options.

* Adventure dining at the Solitude Yurt gets even more adventurous when dinner is over and they boot you out the door. To get back to the parking lot, you ski downhill, along a narrow path in the dark. Since none of us know how to stop or slow down on cross country skis it was kind of like human bumper cars. :)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

How utterly cool, Kate! That sounds like grand fun.