Wednesday, September 30, 2009

My fingernails are still orange

It was carrot harvesting time this weekend at Rebecca’s little garden. My friend Faye told me to wait until the first frost to dig them up but it was pretty dang cold Thursday night so I figured we were okay. Plus, our carrots were running all over each other and they had no room to grow, anyway. It was time to dig ‘em up.

Rebecca and I pulled them all Friday afternoon. We started around 2:30; by 5:30 I was still cleaning carrots. Apparently my mother thought planting 500 carrot seeds was a good idea…

I imagine we had at least 400 carrots of all shapes and sizes. We had some normal-shaped ones but some were quite freaks of nature. (No phallic comments, please. You can’t come up with any we haven’t already joked about. Well, Chef might…)

We peeled and cooked several for Friday night’s dinner and they were delicious. You really can taste the difference. Sweeter, maybe? They just tasted farm-fresh. Rebecca was so proud that she’d contributed to our meal.

Amy eats raw carrots like candy but even so I knew she couldn’t clear the number of carrots from our haul, so I set about learning how to freeze carrots. It’s not that hard – you just have to wash them, peel them, blanch them, plunge them into cold water, dry them, then stuff them in freezer bags and throw them in the freezer. Not hard. But incredibly labor intensive.

I must have peeled carrots for over an hour. And with all that peeling came lots of peels. I know someone’s going to say, “You really should compost that.” Don’t bother. Doing this little garden is enough for me right now.

Of course, if I had composted the peelings I wouldn’t have clogged up my disposal, which Sean had to unclog with the plunger. No, we do not have a dedicated sink plunger – this problem has never occurred before. Believe me when I say I have cleaned the sink repeatedly.

Even if the toilet plunger hadn’t been in my sink I would still have bleached it because all the peelings and clogged water left an orange ring on the sink. The first bleaching didn’t do the job so I soaked the sink with bleach water overnight; that finally did the trick.

The good news is I have several baggies of fresh-frozen carrots in the freezer. I know it will be fun to pull them out in a month or so and tell Rebecca, “Look! These are the carrots you grew!” And I’m sure by then I’ll have forgotten about the toilet plunger in the sink.