Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Golden Nuggets of Oca

I have mentioned before that we are part of a small Seed Circle on the Over The Gate Forum.
This year, someone has kindly circulated some Oca Tubers and we have just received them.

Oxalis Tuberosa is their Latin Name and they do not come cheap so we are extremely grateful that we have been given the chance to grow them for free.

They are enjoying some popularity in the UK at the moment but were once rare in European and American gardens. The New Zealanders have, apparently, been enjoying them since 1869 and in the Andes they are said to be a close rival of the Potato in popularity.
Over at the Real Seeds website, I read that they are one of the 'Lost Crops' of the Incas.


They are slow growers, taking 8 months from planting to harvest, with the Tubers forming properly during the back end of the year.

We have read that they taste like lemony potatoes. Elsewhere we find that if they are dried for several weeks, they taste a bit like dried figs. I am left having no idea what they will taste like but at least they sound as if they are quite versatile.
I have found a recipe for Oca and Bacon and we are keen to try that using some of our Home-Cured Bacon.

I'm quite excited. I like trying new things. I hope they do well. By all accounts they produce masses of Tubers and, if they do, we shall be happy to offer some to anyone who would like to try growing them next year.

Have you tasted Oca?

8 comments:

  1. I don't know anything about oca so it will be interesting to follow your progress with it.

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  2. How interesting. I think I'll look into these a little more. Thanks.

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  3. oh i hope they taste nice ! its a long growing season to find you dont like them ! thanks for the seed link !! ( http://theallotmenttimes.blogspot.com/)

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    1. It is a long growing season but I'm hoping they'll look pretty in the meantime :)
      You're welcome for the link - they have some interesting stuff on there and we have used them in the past. Their Telephone Peas were excellent :)

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  4. Never heard of these before. They sound pretty appetizing. Post later when you harvest them and let us know what they're like.

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    1. You'll have a long wait, Red :) But, yes, I shall post updates.

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  5. I did see them on the Real Seeds website last year and have been curious about them ever since. Some people report loving their unique taste and some say they're not worth it...tasting strange and producing enough tubers for the space they take up. You'll have to let us know how you get on with them Mo - and that's fantastic that you were able to get a hold of some of them through your seed swap! If you think they're worth growing and happen to have any spares next year I wouldn't mind swaping you for some ;)

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  6. I have heard of them, but have never seen or tasted them.

    How interesting though. Look forward to seeing how they turn out in 8 months time.

    Good Luck!

    Martin

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