Earlier in the year we went to our local hardware shop and bought both broccoli and cauliflower sets. As I mentioned in an earlier post we had to use some special tactics to try and keep the bugs off them. We watched the buds appear on the broccoli and took care to knock off any slugs we spotted, meanwhile there was no sign of the little cauliflower heads at all. We checked them week after week and all we could see was the green leaves until finally three weeks ago large purple heads pushed up out of the soil…………..our cauliflower were turnips!!
After getting over our surprise we started to harvest them, giving one large head to my parents as my Dad has a soft spot for turnips.
Then we started to work on harvesting and preserving the broccoli and we’ve gone through 3 rounds so far. We began with picking the heads and removing the leaves and then brought them inside to start washing and cutting them and flushing out any squatters. I think my record was 7 slugs and 4 tiny green caterpillars on one head.
Once that was done we set ourselves up for blanching. A large saucepan of simmering water, two large bowls of ice water and freezer bags labelled (with a best before date for 9 months time) and we were ready to go.
We dropped the florettes into the saucepan for about 3mins, then scooped them out and dropped them straight into the bowls of ice cold water. Then put another round of florettes into the saucepan and so on. Once each round in the ice water had cooled down we put them into large freezer bags and popped them straight into the freezer. We all love broccoli in our house so for each few heads we bring in we always keep one in the fridge to use fresh.
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