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My first ever groundnut harvest

 
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I have slowly been planting more perennial foods around the homestead. Last spring, I mail ordered six small tubers of groundnuts (Apios americana AKA hopniss). My husband built a raised bed and planted them. The other day, I harvested!

Very fun to dig for and find.

I took mostly the largest ones and left the teeny ones to grow next year.

They're one of the Blackmon developed strains.

Of course, we wanted to try them, so my first cooking experiment was roasting some with carrots, onions, and the last of the garden broccoli.

This was the official taste test!

We liked the flavor very much, but I think a moist heat cooking method would be better. Roasting dried them out quite a bit.

I trimmed off the thick connecting roots when I washed them. I chopped these up and fed them to the goats. They liked them too!

Peeling them for roasting gave me an idea of the best size to work with. Of the littlest tubers I harvested, I will plant elsewhere around the homestead.
 
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awesome! i’m a groundnut fan. agreed, they can dry out with dry roasting. try leaving a couple of the bigger ones to regrow one time, that’s how to get real potato-sized ones.
 
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Nice! Those are on my list to try eventually. Do you have to peel them? I often use small red, yellow or blue potatoes without peeling them and I was curious if groundnuts could be used in a similar way. Would save time and make it easier to use the smaller ones.
 
Leigh Tate
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greg mosser wrote:awesome! i’m a groundnut fan. agreed, they can dry out with dry roasting. try leaving a couple of the bigger ones to regrow one time, that’s how to get real potato-sized ones.


Greg, thanks for that tip! I'm sure I left quite a few in the ground. Bigger would definitely be easier to prepare.

Daron Williams wrote:Nice! Those are on my list to try eventually. Do you have to peel them? I often use small red, yellow or blue potatoes without peeling them and I was curious if groundnuts could be used in a similar way. Would save time and make it easier to use the smaller ones.


Daron, I read that even cooked, the peels aren't digestible and can be very gas forming. I don't usually peel vegetables, but I did peel these for that reason. Not daring enough to test out that statement! lol
 
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Nice harvest, Leigh!

We've wanted to get groundnuts started, but we don't know of a good source. Are you allowed to share where you purchased yours?
 
greg mosser
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i might could sell some.u
 
Leigh Tate
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Stacie Kim wrote:We've wanted to get groundnuts started, but we don't know of a good source. Are you allowed to share where you purchased yours?


Well, I don't really recall! I think it was Sow True Seed. And Oikos Trees sells them. I've ordered from both companies and have been happy with products and service.

Greg (comment above ^) lives in the same region, so you might take him up on his offer.
 
greg mosser
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both of those are good options!
 
Stacie Kim
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greg mosser wrote:i might could sell some.u



May I purple mooseage you about this offer?
 
greg mosser
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you may indeed.
 
Leigh Tate
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Daron Williams wrote:Nice! Those are on my list to try eventually. Do you have to peel them? I often use small red, yellow or blue potatoes without peeling them and I was curious if groundnuts could be used in a similar way. Would save time and make it easier to use the smaller ones.


Daron, I just watched two videos in which the groundnuts were cooked without peeling. So maybe it isn't as necessary as I first read! I'll have to experiment and see what we think.
 
greg mosser
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they peel pretty easily after cooking, too. i’ve eaten the peel many times without really significant issues. the main thing is just that the peel is really thick and tough, and not really pleasant to eat from a texture standpoint.
 
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Greg, do you have several patches? Under what conditions do they grow best for you?
 
greg mosser
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in the wild, groundnuts are mostly a riparian species. they don’t want to be soaking in water, but they want constant access to it. they’re okay with part shade, and want something to climb.

since they grow their tubers in long strings, they tend to ‘run’ - in the orchard where i have some planted i’ve had vines pop up 10 feet away from the original plant, in the middle of the mowing alley. because of this tendency, i grow the majority of mine in those large cloth grow-bags, and the strings of tubers usually end up coiled along the bottom of the pots. being in pots makes in necessary to water regularly, though, that’s the trade-off. i tend to keep the same ‘mother’ tubers for years, which in the improved selections get bigger every year. they’re still edible at great sizes, but they get little woody veins through them that makes them less pleasant to deal with.

i do also have them planted in a number of other places and they do well, but retrieval becomes a problem.

here’s a picture of three older ‘grandmother’ tubers and some strings of new first-year tubers. the big one there weighs 1.85lbs and there’s bigger ones. those bigger tubers are a little past their prime, but i’m going to make chips out of one of the big ones today anyway.
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greg mosser
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chips! even quite big, they’re still really good. this is half of one of those big ones, parboiled, sliced thin, fried in bacon grease and salted!
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5FA64932-465B-4420-855B-2387592E6C1E.jpeg
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