Many summer planters are looking a little tired right about now. I know mine sure are. It is still too hot for many fall annuals and there are slim pickings in the nurseries. I don’t know about you, but I want to stretch summer a bit longer and am not quite ready to switch my entrance and patio décor to full blown fall. My solution? Bring a little bit of fall to summer planters.
To freshen up my entrance’s potted hydrangeas, I pulled out tired trailing annuals and nestled in some mini white mums and some dried lotus seed pods. It’s not even September and I’ve bought a few mums! There is a hint of fall with the mums and dried pods but still a lot of summer in the green and white color scheme and the lingering hydrangeas. The curly willow branches compliment the dried lotus seed pods nicely. I switched out my summer wreath for a monogrammed basket of green apples and mums. To see how I made it, please click here.
When Bon Appétit magazine declares the best pizza in America is in your backyard, you’ve got see for yourself if it lives up to the hype!
At Pizza Beddia there is no phone, no preorders, no chairs, no slices, no restroom. Cash only. Whole pies only. One size only. Maximum of 2 pies per party. 40 pizzas per night sold. 2 small tables for stand-up dining. BYO. Open Wednesday to Saturday 5:30 pm-10:30pm. On several recent summer days, my husband determined to get one of these pizzas and see why it was declared the Best Pizza in America. And days it took!
The dreaded sign that turns hundreds of hungry customers away!
“I am an expression of the divine, just like a peach is.”
Alice Walker, The Color Purple
This make ahead dessert is packed with the flavors of summer! Juicy ripe peaches are cooked into a compote, spiced with a little ginger and swirled into 2 layers of low-fat frozen yogurt for a guilt-free dessert. The graham çracker crust with chopped pecans is spiced with cinnamon and ginger to really compliment the fresh peaches. This wasn’t the prettiest of my creations but it sure was delicious!
The finished pie.
Lobster rolls are a summer classic and on a recent trip to Maine, I certainly ate them as often as possible from harborside stands where the lobster was fresh right off the boats. Doesn’t get any better than that! The ones I liked best were the simplest: big chunks of lobster in a smidgen of mayo in a perfectly toasted top-slit roll. Having been home a few weeks, we were longing for a lobster roll again. I tried my hand at making them for the first time. I researched recipes online and settled on Martha Stewart’s recipe for its simplicity. Our first lobster roll, and still the freshest and best, had been enjoyed at Beal’s Lobster Pier, on Mount Desert Island, where we were told Martha celebrates her birthday each August. These weren’t Beal’s, with a water view, but pretty darn good for being landlocked in Pennsylvania! And oh, Happy Birthday Martha!
Soup’s on! What? It’s August! With the mercury flirting in the 90s, a chilled soup is total perfection. This one features seasonal fresh corn and gets a super velevety texture from avocado. The addition of fresh jalapeno pepper gives the soup a hint of heat while a splash of lime juice enhances its Mexican flair. The soup is super easy and gets you out of the kitchen fast. We served it on the day it was made but if you want to make it ahead, prepare it as directed but hold off on adding the avocado until you are ready to enjoy the soup. You can get creative with toppings: thin slices of avocado, fresh corn kernels, lime zest, chopped chives all go well. I finished the soups with either a drizzle of olive oil or a drizzle of lime crèma( sour cream thinned out with lime juice). Both were invitingly delicious!
“I like tomato, you like to-mah-to. Let’s call the whole thing off.” George Gershwin
And I say whatever you call ’em, enjoy tomatoes as often as you can while they’re in season. Nothing compares in taste as the sun ripened juicy orbs we enjoy at this time of year! I seriously eat tomatoes every single day they are in season and never tire of simple sliced tomatoes with salt, pepper and shredded basil. If your’re looking to make the most of the season’s bounty, here are my top 12 most popular tomato recipes.( You can access the recipe by clicking on the highlighted titles). Substitute fresh tomatoes in all recipes and seek heirloom varieties when you can as they are often sweeter than the hybrids more commonly grown. Heirlooms have firmer flesh and their sweetness bumps up the essence of tomatoey goodness. Wishing you plenty of vine ripened tomatoes as summer wanes. Enjoy often! Continue reading