Maggie Beer

Rolling pin pumpkin zucchini

In the garden

Seeds to Sow in Summer

January 12 2018

Tomatoes 1

While Summer in the Barossa is quite unrelenting, there are still a few hardy plants that can be added to your veggie patch at this time of year to take advantage of the warm months still ahead of us. This is the time of year to make sure your existing veggies are well fed too, adding a seaweed emulsion or liquid fertiliser will really help keep up the growth of your plants. And as an extra tip, I always water first thing in the morning, a deep watering a couple of times a week is far more beneficial than a quick water everyday. Read the rest...

Home Grown Onions

July 24 2017

Onions 5

I wonder if it’s the fact that the onion is perhaps the most ubiquitous of all the vegetables we eat, that makes it so easy to forget they do indeed have their own season? Growing them in a home garden completely changes that. There’s no doubt onions are at their best, freshly dug from the garden, in autumn and winter. To taste them at their peak sheds a whole new light on what you may consider using onions for. When they are picked in season their superior flavour makes them an easy choice to base an entire meal around rather than simply use them as a background ingredient. It’s worth mentioning they are a breeze to grow too. The brown onion varieties I have had the most success with are ‘Creamgold’ and ‘Murray Brown’, and although I don’t tend to use as many white onions compared to brown, I always plant a white onion option; ‘White Spanish’, which I find to be a milder tasting onion. Red onions are lovely roasted, but are also my first choice for a raw addition to salads and salsa, so I always include one or two varieties when I’m planting my onions for the season; I particularly like the sweeter flavour of ‘Redshine’ which grows very well in our Mediterranean climate. -MB Read the rest...

A Love of Leeks

June 13 2017

Leeks 71

Leeks are a vegetable I always give space to in my kitchen garden, as tender young leeks are so different from the fat, over-mature specimens shops often offer. Young leeks add an extra dimension to slow-cooked winter foods and there is nothing like their buttery fragrance, filling the kitchen with warmth when the weather is at its coldest outside. Although pencil leeks are now more widely available in major city markets, at the wrong time of year they can still be woody in their centre so I have always opted to grow my own for the assurance of picking them at their very best. Home gardening can change opinions of previously passed over vegetables in an instant, and never more so than with the comparison of a tough old leek past its prime, to the sweetest, melt-in-your-mouth leek just picked from your garden. -MB Read the rest...

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