Photo: Eric Diesel
Get the recipe after the jump.
Photo: Eric Diesel
Photo: FL4Y, Flickr
What treat is nicer on an icy morning than fresh jam? Upon opening it, the eater is greeted with the sunny fragrance of fruit that once hung heavy on its limb or vine. Upon tasting it, memories come alive of the orchard, woodland and garden.
After the jump, an original recipe for a spicy peach jam to slather on autumnal scones, dribble on winter waffles or spread on humble anytime toast. Once you get the hang of canning, it's really simple, so go ahead: Grab a bushel of peaches while they're plentiful, and seal some summer into a jar.
|Heirloom tomato salad. Photo: Eric Diesel|
If you're lucky enough to live near a farmers market, don't forget to thank your local farmer and gardener for that sparkling-fresh produce, especially those who grow heirloom vegetables and fruits. In addition to growing delicious produce, they're cultivating history, right on the vine.
Though there are some differences of opinion about its exact definition, an heirloom variety of fruit or vegetable is generally agreed to be one that has been cultivated for at least 50 years. Beans are an heirloom veggie ever-growing in popularity, but the food that truly sings of summer is the tomato.
Heirloom tomatoes are beginning to appear in gardens, at roadside stands and lining produce aisles. In honor of the unique flavors and colors of these beauties, beyond the jump is an original recipe for a summer tomato salad: history you can eat. But remember to save some seeds -- preserving them is the least we can do for these species that give so much to us.
|French vegetable tian. Photo: Eric Diesel.|
Provençal cooking celebrates the earthy traditions of the French countryside and southern France in general, with food as simple and good as bread, wine, cheese. A tian -- a layered, baked vegetable dish that originated in Provence but is also common to city kitchens -- is the perfect complement to this French holiday. Unlike a gratin, a tian does not include bread crumbs or cheese, which allows the juices in the vegetables to evaporate in the oven's dry heat, concentrating their flavors.
Beyond the jump is an original recipe for tian of summer vegetables, which has been streamlined for the home cook while retaining fidelity to the original French dish. Serve this with your Bastille Day poulet, boeuf or pouisson, and watch as wine glasses around the table clink and diners agree: "Vive la France!"
| Corn relish. Photo: bookgrl/ Flickr.
As you lug all of your fresh produce home, don't worry -- as always, we've got your back. Beyond the jump is an original recipe to use that corn, those peppers and those onions to make a quick, fresh corn relish.
This relish has a Southwestern twang, but it can accompany virtually anything coming off of your grill for Fourth of July barbecues, from juicy burgers and seared steaks to perfectly smoked chicken. And if the summer corn is too irresistible to resist buying a bushel, you can double the recipe and send some home with your guests.