Preparing Your Harvest Can Be as Simple as Growing It

Preparing Your Harvest Can Be as Simple as Growing It

Preparing Your Harvest Can Be as Simple as Growing It 560 315 Eco Garden Systems

Who doesn’t want to eat better? We all have that nagging desire to exercise more and to add healthy choices to our diets. Every once in a while you hear people say it is too expensive to eat healthy. It can be expensive and choices are limited of where to buy fresh produce and not fork out a lot of money for it.  Farmers markets probably have the best choices when it comes to produce straight from the farm, but they can be pricey and in smaller towns can only appear on weekends. Supermarkets offer a wide variety but you have no idea where or how it was grown and now you have money into something that can potentially make you sick. If eating better is what you desire you definitely want to have complete control on what you are consuming.

Farmers Market
Supermarket

One way to do that is to start your own garden. There are many different choices in gardening methods to get you started. One of the easiest is a raised garden bed that you fill with soil and plant. This type of garden will help you start as a beginner without a whole lot of work. Many of the raised garden beds out there come in different sizes that will fit wherever you may live. Self-watering features are a benefit because they can eliminate confusions over watering. One of the biggest mistakes in a garden is too much water or too little. Research your options and decide what works best for you. Considering how much time and effort you want to commit will help you in the long run maintain and keep a garden.

Raised Garden Bed

Whether you purchase or grow your own vegetables there is still the desire to prepare vegetables in different ways without losing their nutrient value. So you have all these beautiful vegetables, what do you do with them? Of course the best way to consume vegetables is raw. Eating them raw keeps all of the nutrients in tack. As soon as you add heat or water you risk the loss of essential vitamins and minerals. Eighty percent of a boiled potato’s vitamin C can be loss in the drain once you drain the water out! I think of one of the best tips from our older generation was to use the boiled potato water in the gravy. Potato starch is very similar to water or milk mixed with flour. It is a fantastic thickening agent and adds the benefits of all those nutrients. So does that mean healthy gravy? It does for those who need a gluten free diet. Potato water is a nice substitute for flour. If more consistency is needed in your gravy adding a little of the mashed potatoes will help thicken it even more.  Potato water can also be used in soups and sauces.

Steaming your vegetables is another wonderful way to maintain nutrients. Keeping the water content in your vegetables will also help maintain their flavor. When biting into steamed vegetables there should be a crisp factor. Whether it is green beans or carrots there should be a slight crunch! Another easy and quick way to prepare your veggies is to stir fry. Adding minimal oil and lots of seasonings will make for a healthy dinner option in no time at all. Of course there are the options to bake or fry your vegetables or even adding them to soups or stews. The options above are merely easy and take little preparation or time

Basic vegetables like potatoes, carrots, and beans can be easy to prepare with many different recipes available. So what do you do with all of those tomatoes? Tomatoes are a vegetable that most people choose to eat raw. There are so many ways to prepare those beautiful tomatoes other than just salads and sauces. Sautéing them is one method. The recipe below is very easy and will take very little time to prepare. It can be prepared and served with a lettuce salad for a quick nutrient rich meal. Roma tomatoes are suggested because they retain that tomato flavor with less cooking time. Cherry tomatoes can be used but will add a slight sweet flavor due to the short cooking time.

Fresh Tomato and Garlic Pasta
1½ cups of uncooked penne pasta ( 4 oz) or pasta of your choice
2tsp of olive oil
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1lb Roma tomatoes (6 medium) or 25 cherry tomatoes, quartered or chopped
2 tsp. Italian seasonings
Salt and pepper (optional)
Parmesan cheese

Cook and drain pasta as directed on package.
In a 10- inch skillet, heat oil over medium- high heat. Cook garlic in oil 30 seconds, stirring frequently. Stir in tomatoes. Cook 8 minutes, stirring frequently, until tomatoes are soft and sauce is slightly thickened. Stir in Italian seasonings and cook 1 to 2 minutes more. Add pasta to sauce and garnish with parmesan cheese.

Start a garden and enjoy your harvest! Reap the benefits of knowing where and how the vegetables on your plate got there. Nutritious eating can be easy and so can growing it yourself.

“Try and fail, but never fail to try!” Jared Leto

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