Wednesday, May 30, 2012


So... do you have carrots in your garden? Ever hear of root knot nematodes? I hadn't... until this year, when my carrots started coming out of the ground like this:



I looked around in the interwebs for a suggestion to what in the good green earth was going on, and came across the suggestion of nematodes. I then brought a twisted carrot to our local nursery, and had my theory confirmed- nematodes, indeed. An organism that naturally exists in all soils in relative balance (there are good nematodes and bad nematodes... one guess as to which I have more of), though something in my soil has caused an imbalance, lucky me. There is nothing wrong with the carrot itself, it is just forced into weird shapes as it grows. Kinda cool... in a sad kind of way...

This week, I finally got around to cleaning out my garden, and I had to pull a big bunch of these twisty veggies to let some sunlight in to a too-shaded area.

When nematodes there be, it is so much more obvious that this familiar veg is actually a root.

So... what to do with all these gnarly carrots?

What to do indeed...

They may be ugly, but they sure are delicious! Tonight: pot roast with potatoes, onions, and CARROTS!

The carrot cake pictured above was my first attempt at making a 'healthy' version of the calorie-laden favorite we all love, and though the flavor was perfect, the texture was way to dense for me to share the recipe... yet. The carrot bread, however, was excellent... 

Carrot Bread
(usually our Zucchini Bread recipe... just sub zucchini for the carrots and there you go)

 3 C finely shredded carrots (or zucchini... or a combo of both)
1 1/3 C (scant) sugar
2/3 C veg oil (I think coconut oil would work here, 
but hubs doesn't like it, so I left it out... this time)
2 tsp vanilla
4 large eggs at room temp
3 C whole wheat pastry flour
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 generous tsp cinnamon
pinch of cloves
walnuts, if desired

Move oven rack to bottom of oven, so that loaves' tops will be in the center when baking. Preheat oven to 350F and grease 2 loaf pans. Mix shredded carrots, sugar, oil, vanilla and eggs. Add remaining ingredients to combined carrot mixture, adding nuts last (if using). Fill loaf pans 1/2 full and bake for 50-60 mins. or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool completely before cutting (or loaf will be too gummy/crumbly), freezes well.

1 comment:

  1. I took a test that included those nematodes one day at TAMU so they are familiar but details fade. You are awesome!