New Gardener: Fresh veggies from the garden contribute to keto success

Posted on: August 19, 2019 | Written By: Jess Levo | Comments

Note: Everybody Gardens videographer Jess Levo will be chronicling her adventures as a first-time gardener under the guidance of Doug Oster this year.

It’s been awhile since I’ve talked about my garden. What a busy summer.

All I can say is that I’ve been harvesting, harvesting and harvesting!

I think I’ve mentioned before, but I’ve been following a ketogenic diet since April. (Keto haters may hate, but my husband and I have lost a combined 50+ pounds so far.) Anyway, having fresh veggies nearly daily from my garden has been a huge help.

Let’s talk about my favorite subject first: my tomatoes.

The Cherokee Purple tomatoes suggested by the man at the store are way better than I could have ever expected. I just wish they were growing a little more. Maybe I just need to be patient.

Let me preface this story. I am not a raw tomato person … at all. Just ask Doug. He once handed me a sungold and I stared at it before hesitantly biting into it. (I liked it!) But the thought of taking a massive bite into a beefsteak tomato? Never. Until now.

Right off the vine, I sliced into my freshly plucked tomato, ground a little Himalayan salt and took a big ol’ bite. Holy cow. I’m hooked.

Needless to say, my husband and I have been enjoying some massive BLTs (without bread for the keto diet, of course) and BELTs (add a fried egg).

The roma tomatoes are doing even better. We’ve been using those for zucchini bruschetta, among many other keto-friendly sauces.

In case you’re wondering, all of my ingredients came from my garden except for the onion.

Speaking of zucchini, those have been hit and miss for me. My ends keep rotting, and Doug says the flowers are not being pollinated. Could it be because of the huge leaves? Check this out:

keto

I need to talk about the two plants I grew from seed this year. Doug generously gave me a few packs of seeds from his Seed of the Month Club, and I chose to try the beans and the cucumbers.

They have been growing like crazy! Admittedly, I planted too many and too close together, so the cucumbers are kind of taking over everything. But I’m thrilled at their production.

Remember my last post about surprises in the garden?

My stalks are actually growing corn.

keto

Oh, and how could I forget to mention my garlic? It was the first thing I planted, and I am thrilled with the results.

And in traditional gardener fashion, I pretty much gave it all away. This fall, I’ll be sure to plant double.

Earlier New Gardener stories

5: Surprises Galore And Several Unexpected Growths

4: Repurposed Grill Given New Life And Lilies In Bloom

3: Starting The Garden And Buying Too Many Plants

2: Continuing A Family Legacy Of Gardening

1: Birdfeeders Attracting Birds That Will Benefit The Garden

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Doug Oster is manager and editor of Everybody Gardens with a passion for gardening and a love of sharing is experiences with other gardeners. You will also find Doug’s gardening contributions in the Tribune-Review each week. He’s an Emmy Award winning producer, television host and writer. Oster is co-host of The Organic Gardeners Radio show every Sunday morning at 7 a.m. on KDKA radio in Pittsburgh. Oster’s Outstanding Documentary Emmy was awarded for Gardens of Pennsylvania, a one hour special he conceived and produced for the PBS affiliate WQED. Doug appears every Thursday morning on KDKA-TV’s Pittsburgh Today live at 9 a.m. “Gardening is fun, he says, enjoy every day spent outside tending vegetables, flowers, shrubs and trees.”