Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Summer Food

Summer is a wonderful time for food! I love the color of everything and the fact that you can have a fairly simple dinner with a few ingredients but it can be full of such flavor and beauty!

I've been enjoying cherries the past few weeks since they have been on sale for an extremely good price. I think I really just prefer cherries as they come (although a cherry pie is hard to resist).
I did manage to try a cherry clafouti which I've been wanting to make for years! It's a common French dessert made with what is essentially a crepe/pancake/Swedish pancake type batter. I found it tasted like crepes with cherries inside. :)

Saturday I volunteered to help my sister out. She wanted chocolate petit fours. Yes, I knew what I was getting into. I attempted once in my childhood to make petit fours and have had the wisdom to never do it again. However, sometimes you'll do things for a sister.....

So, I made a really, really good chocolate cake and then made the ganache to cover the chocolate cake pieces. Talk about a messy process -- covering the little cakes! With lots of patience and persistence, they worked. And, they tasted AMAZING! I know, because I broke all my rules and actually ate most of one! (Note: I did not make the store-bought confections in the wrappers)

Did you know that last Friday was "Give your neighbor a zucchini (courgette) day"? Zucchinis are jokes in the country, from what I understand. I didn't have any to give away, and, unfortunately, I was not the recipient of any. Oh well. It would have made a good blog post.

Last weekend I made a terrific Chocolate Zucchini Cake which I would recommend to any of you with extra zucchini.

The kids were using their imagination this weekend and came up with grill toys to play with. Check out their grill! -- complete with charcoal bricks underneath! And, if you listened to them play you would here a "Tstzh" everytime they placed something on the grill!

My favorite summer time tea is made with mint from my pot out back. I pick a sprig, boil the water and then put the sprig and my decaf Irish breakfast teabag into my mug. After steeping, I pull out the mint and teabag and put in a little milk. It is SO, SO good!

While in Madison I bought some tomatillos from one of the farmers at the farmer's market. I asked what to do with them and he promptly pulled out this little recipe from his shirt pocket.

When we got home I whipped this salsa up and I have to admit it was the best salsa I've ever made! I'll be saving that recipe!

Tonight I have corn chowder on the menu, to be made with fresh corn from the farmer's market. We're eating lots of fresh cucumbers and tomatoes, zucchini and summer squash. Peaches are at their best price this week, so I'm trying to decide how many pounds to freeze and make into jam. And the weather is incredible! Whoever heard of days on end in August where the temp never goes above 80!


Alicia said...

When I make tomatillo salsa, I boil the tomatillos whole for about 4-5 min, then I throw them in the food processor with lime juice, salt, red pepper flakes, and cilantro. I've never tried it by not cooking the tomatillos though. Yours sounds good.

Niall MacC said...

3 blond babies! No chance of running around Ireland with no shoes on this Summer!!! In fact, we need to be wearing our wellies!

Patty said...

Heather, you take beautiful pictures no matter what the subject!

The salsa sounds yummy, I may to try that!
Have a blessed day, Patty

Oh..I accidently delted my blogs...this is my new URL.

willow said...

I love the first photo, Heather. Perfect summer eating!

Alaina said...

You are making my mouth water! Looks and sounds delicious!

I've never tried petit fours but had a friend recommend putting them on a wire rack with wax paper underneath and pouring the frosting/ganache over it - is that how you do it? I've not been brave enough to try but they are so beautiful! :)

Monica said...

I have zucchini bread in the oven as we speak! I've saved grated zucchini back to freeze so I'll have the get the cake recipe from you sometime.

Tell me now, where are the peaches you speak of?

Lovella ♥ said...

oooh. the salsa looks scrumptious. .those petit fours look so classy . .I'll be making some of those for sure. It is such a simple concept but oh I bet it tasted worth every morsel.
oh and the little melon munchers. .so darling. .love them.