Buried in Bounty

Blackberries and greenberries aka Morelle verte (Solanum opacum)

The harvest is so bountiful this year. It’s no surprise really, considering the weather we’ve had. Dry and hot, then wet, followed again by heat. The plants love it. I collected enough herbs from our community garden plot yesterday to cover the kitchen floor. Literally. I then spent hours preparing it all to preserve by varying methods. Let’s just say, we’re not going to be short on herbs this winter.

If you’re looking for a way to use up some of those baseball bat-sized zucchinis, I highly recommend this zucchini bread recipe from Heidi of 101 Cookbooks. It is a revelation. We’ve made it several times, altering the optional ingredients, and it comes out perfect and incredibly delicious every single time. I will never use another zucchini bread recipe again. Go make some now. You will not regret it.

I made this last batch using a giant roll of cinnamon I brought back from Dominica. Look at the size of it against a typical supermarket piece! In fact, the small, locally purchased piece is probably not cinnamon, but cassia, a cinnamon substitute more commonly found in North American supermarkets. Grinding that big piece of cinnamon was very satisfying, the smell so wonderfully sweet and aromatic. I love that every time I use this spice — which judging by the size of it will be for a very long time — I will be taken back to our trip.

What are you making with your bounty?

Gayla Trail
Gayla is a writer, photographer, and former graphic designer with a background in the Fine Arts, cultural criticism, and ecology. She is the author, photographer, and designer of best-selling books on gardening, cooking, and preserving.

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10 thoughts on “Buried in Bounty

  1. I would loooooooove a slab of cinnamon bark like that. Did a friend gift it to you while you were there, or did you buy it at a market?

  2. Susan: How is this like Martha? Please explain.

    There is a nutmeg posttwo in fact. Have never been to Jamaica and have no personal connections there so don’t intend to.

    Erin: I’m not sure if this is the piece I got as a trade from a gardener (who in turn got it in trade for picking up a hitchhiker) or if this is one I bought. I got a few to give as gifts to friends and kept one for myself.

  3. Thanks for the shout out Gayla. I’m so glad you like the zucchini bread. Please let me know if you ever find yourself in San Francisco, I’ve been reading your site for so many years, I feel like we should really meet in person! :) Best, -h

  4. That zucchini bread recipe looks great, I’ll have to try it.

    I’ve been making lots of plum tomato sauce, oven dried tomatoes with cherry tomatoes and some mixed vegetable pickles for the first time.

    Also have a big container of Gayla’s shiso slushie in the freezer, it is the most incredibly refreshing drink when you’re hot and tired! I’ve had it with gin and added a chunk to day old wine which transformed it into something magical.

  5. Okay, sorry…this question does not follow theme of this post. Your book has finally inspired me to move beyond flipping through my canning recipes to actually doing it. My first batch (Ginger Pear Preserves)…just came out of the boiling bath. One of my jars I could only fil to about 1/2 inch to the rim rather than 1/4 inch from the rim. Is this a tragedy? Anything I should watch for?

    ooo…just heard my first can “pop” shut. I’m hooked on this process but still a bit scared of poisoning someone.

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