The kitchen garden is at the end of its summer season of growth and with day and night temperatures dropping and the odd shower, their is a change in the air. Over the last two weeks in the garden the kids have taken out all of the remaining corn, tomatoes, zuchinni, cucumber, rocket and beans. We have saved seeds from our Dragon’s Tongue and Rattlesnake beans, cucumber and zuchini and will dry and store them for spring planting. We have also dried some Jalapeno and Habanero chillies and a selection of cherry, pear and Tommy Toe tomatoes which we will store in oil for cooking with at a later stage.  
Still growing well are the capsicums, chillies, silverbeet, Italian Parsely and the strikingly beautiful Listada di Gandia  Eggplant. We are feeding them up with worm tea and Seasol to keep them going as the weather cools. I am already dreaming about what to do with the eggplant.
The strawberry plants are madly sending out runners, so T5 students cut them from their parent plant and potted them up ready to be either sold or replanted.
Coriander seeds, collected in September were sown into jiffy pots by the kids from T5 and students from T4 are taking part in a trial looking at growth rates in Kale planted as seed, small seedlings with only a pair of true leaves and advanced seelings purchased at the Nursery. We will be asking the kids to monitor their growth rates and harvest times, so stay tuned for the results.
We grew three different types of basil this year and the last of these were harvested at the end of March. Thanks to Katrina and a band of helpers, fresh basil pesto was made and sold at the school. Pesto is a wonderfully herbaceous paste made using the freshest of basil, parsely (optional), good quality olive oil, garlic, parmesan and your choice of nuts, though usually cashews, pinenuts or almonds are preferred. You do need a food processor, but in minutes you will have a delicious ingredient ready to stir through warm pasta and served with a crunchy green salad – Delicious!
One more week of toil in the garden and then we will feed it up with a concoction of organic fertilsers and leave it for a few weeks before planting cool season crops at the start of Term 2. Thanks to those who helped in the garden this term.
Enjoy the recipe and happy gardening during the holidays.
Susie Ormonde
 1 cup of well packed basil leaves
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
30g pine nuts
2 cloves of garlic
60g of the best quality grated parmesan cheese you can find or afford
Blend all ingredients, minus the cheese, in a blender or food processor. Once blended evenly, place in a bowl and mix the cheese into the paste with a spoon. Use immediately, or cover with oil and place in an air tight jar. May be frozen. Best served with pasta or fresh potato gnocchi.

Leave a comment