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Savoring the Seasons

Savoring the Seasons: Late summer delights

By MARY MCCLINTOCK

Every season has its delights, and I’m revelling in the delights of late summer. This past week, I’ve enjoyed a picnic of chicken/green bean salad and fresh Bars Farm melon cubes while floating in my kayak watching the moon rise on the Connecticut River, savored Chase Hill Farm cheddar and Bars Farm tomato quesadillas while sitting on my screened porch, and wiped peach juice off my chin after devouring a Clarkdale peach.

As I write this from my back porch “summer office,” a hummingbird is sampling nectar from jewelweed and phlox in my backyard.

A delight of every season is hearing from readers. Recently, I heard from two readers about pie. Helen Gould from Shelburne wrote about the Apple Pie Contest at the Franklin County Fair. She said, “The Fair history, written many years ago, says ‘The Fair shows the skill of baking the best apple pie.’ I have been the originator of the apple pie contest, a contestant, and the superintendent of it in later years. It’s a fun contest that many exhibitors enter yearly, to either try to keep their title, win the title, or ??????”

Last year, there were 33 entries in the contest and Helen hopes for more this year. Do you receive rave reviews for your apple pie? Want to know what makes a great apple pie? See below for contest details. Sounds like a great way to start a day at the Fair! For general Fair information, visit www.fcas.com.

I also heard from Eleanor Taylor from South Deerfield about the Cutler Point Blueberry Pie recipe Amy Clarke learned from her mother and shared with us earlier this summer. Eleanor wrote “I made your Cutler Point Blueberry pie recently. It was fabulous. Everyone in the group loved it. It will be the only blueberry pie I will ever make.”

Of course, I passed the praise along to Amy. She wrote back, “Thanks so much for sharing! I had a call from a neighbor when we got back from vacation, saying she’d brought the recipe on THEIR vacation, and the family loved it.”

I also heard from Mary Chicoine Praus from Greenfield about savoring tomatoes. Mary said, “I swore this past winter I would eat tomatoes at every meal this summer. Today — open face tomato and basil sandwich with a side of peaches for breakfast. For lunch, tomato, corn and basil in a garlic and balsamic vinaigrette. Supper? How about corn on the cob and fried tomatoes.”

I asked Mary for a favorite tomato recipe and she sent me this simple, tasty, late summer salad recipe.

What delights you this season?

Franklin County Fair Apple Pie Contest, Saturday, Sept. 7, Pies received 8:15 to 8:45 a.m., Judging starts at 9 a.m. sharp. Roundhouse, Franklin County Fairgrounds, Greenfield. Two-crusted apple pies should be entered with recipe card of pie entered and card with exhibitor’s name and address. Exhibitors show their pie at gate as admission for the day at the Fair. Junior contest for youth 12 years of age and under. Pies may be picked up by exhibitor after 11 a.m. All pies not picked up by 11:30 will be given to Salvation Army for their dinners. For information, contact Helen Gould, gouldsmaple@hughes.net.

This week we’re eating. . .

TOMATO AND CORN SALAD

By Mary Praus, Greenfield

All measurements approximate.

3 or 4 ripe tomatoes – coarsely chopped

3 ears of corn (boiled, cooled, and cut off cobs)

1 or 2 cloves of garlic (finely diced)

for the dressing:

3 T. balsamic vinegar

1 to 2 tsp. tamari

5 T. good quality olive oil

Cracked black pepper to taste

1 big handful of basil (scissor snipped into salad just before serving)

In a bowl, gently stir together first three ingredients. In a separate bowl, whisk together dressing ingredients. Stir gently into tomato mixture. Snip basil on top. Variations: Add fresh smoked or regular mozzarella or feta.

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