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Archive for 'late summer'

TOMATOES, BASIL, PASTA

In a few weeks, I’ll get around to turning the season’s abundance into late-season tomato sauce and slow-roasted tomatoes, as well as pesto, but right now, I still want supper to taste like the garden. That’s why you’ll find scalloped tomatoes in my current culinary rotation, as well as the pasta below, a keeper from my days […]

BLUEBERRIES IN GIN SYRUP

Labor Day weekend came and went, and guess what? It’s still summer! Gardens everywhere are galloping at full tilt, and even in our own little patch, something is ripening, ready for the picking, each minute. That doesn’t stop me, though, from braking at practically every farm stand I pass—especially when I catch sight of the blaze of sapphire […]

ICEBERG LETTUCE

For years, iceberg lettuce was the red-headed stepchild of the salad family, disdained by the food-obsessed for being watery, devoid of flavor and nutrition, and hopelessly common. Now, of course, it’s retro-chic, embraced by chefs who think nothing of charging top dollar (irony isn’t cheap) for a pale wedge wearing a mantle of (artisanal) blue-cheese […]

LATE-SUMMER PLUMS: A MARKET STORY

With this brisk, wish-I-had-a-jacket weather, people at farmers markets are embracing autumn with open arms. I, for one, am not jumping the gun. We’re going to be eating apples for months, remember? But even though I’m clinging to summer’s stone fruits (and the last of the snapdragons and zinnias), a bit of finesse in the […]

SLOW-HAND SQUASH

The fetishization of baby yellow summer squashes and zucchini (which is a type of summer squash) began with restaurant chefs, and who can blame them? On the plate, the barely cooked vegetables look dramatic and delicate all at once, whether served whole or sliced into little pale golden or green coins. And it didn’t take […]

JUMBLEBERRY PIE: A MARKET STORY

“A trip to the farmers market can be as inspiring and as uplifting as a trip to Yosemite,” Marion Cunningham once wrote, and that is especially true in August—it is such an opulent month. In Manhattan, the Union Square market is brimming with tomatoes and corn, peaches and melons, eggplants and peppers, yellow crookneck squash […]

OLD-WORLD OKRA

Most Americans are squeamish about viscosity, and so tend to pigeonhole okra as a quaint southern specialty. It has its place simmered in a gumbo, pickled in a spiced brine, or enrobed in a cornmeal batter and fried, they say, but still. There is a mighty fine line between tolerant and patronizing, and what I find […]

OBSESSION: PEACH RATAFIA

Roast chicken with lemons and sage is in the oven. Just-dug potatoes are simmering on the stovetop. We have had a run of what my mother would call “Champagne days”—cool and crisp, with high, cloudless blue skies. No Pol Roger or Gruet Brut in our fridge, alas, but wedged between a tub of gochujang and […]