Friday, October 18, 2013

Last of the Carrots

Last Easter I got a packet of carrot seeds from the Easter Bunny. I'd never grown carrots from seed before. A year ago I bought a pony pack from a nursery and tried growing them at the community garden. I learned that carrots would grow in a mangled knot without preparing soil in the planting bed deeply enough.

This year I started the seeds and planted two rows at the community garden. I had some seedlings left and decided to plant them in potting soil in a container. (Yes, I saw this on Pinterest.) This way I could compare the carrots grown in the container with those grown at the garden.

This summer I produced the "witches fingers" carrots at the community garden. That's the nick name they got from the carrot eaters in my family. I assumed that all the rototilled, composted soil in our community garden would provide the straight carrots you see in the store. Nope.

So I finally decided to pull the carrots from the container, quite sure that I would see long, straight (normal) carrots. Nope.

Needless to say, a packet of carrot seeds produces a lot of carrots. We've had them in all sorts of shapes and sizes all summer. I decided the last of the carrots would make great muffins.
I eat gluten free, so this muffin recipe is one I've tried before from Simply Sugar and Gluten Free, by Amy Green.

I managed to get 15 muffins, packed with carrot and roasted pecans. It was a great way to use the last of the carrots, but was much more work than simply eating them raw. I really struggle baking gluten free, I think that it is assumed the person baking has experience baking from regular recipes. Trying to include alternative ingredients for both gluten and sugar is still a challenge for me,  and not much fun. Although I ruined the frosting recipe, these muffins were delicious.

It wasn't until our trip to the farmer's market that I saw stacks of perfect carrots in all the stalls. So I finally asked someone and they said ,"it's the water." Oh. You can see I didn't read much about the topic. This made sense, neither the community garden or the container got regular watering this summer. Both for different reasons.

I'm not excited about growing carrots right now, but admit that next year if I do container gardening only, that would be a chance to retest my carrot growing skills.

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