One of my fondest summer memories as a child is the summer garden. When I was younger, we lived relatively close to my great-grandparents. There was a plot of land in between our home and their home that was used for gardening. I remember my Pawpaw tilling the land; carefully making rows; and using the Farmer's Alamanac as his guide to planting. He would let my brother and I drop seeds into the rows. Then, the nightly ritually became watering and weeding. Weeding was likely my least favorite, but it had to be done. I never thought it about alot as child, but watching those seeds turn into plants which then bears a harvest is a pretty incredible thing. The joy of Pawpaw digging & my brother and I finding the potatoes buried in the ground; pulling corn from the tall stalks; picking green beans; following the cucumber & squash vines throughout the plot as they spread --- just thinking of these memories makes me want to go back in time.
Of course, the work wasn't over when we harvested -- it was cleaning & snapping green beans; shucking corn on the front porch; cleaning cucumbers to make pickles and the list goes on and on and on. Sometimes, it seems like gardening & canning is a lost art today. I wish I had paid more attention to growing up & embraced the concept more and whined about the chore less. One day... maybe I'll have my own small plot of land back in the country again.... a girl can dream right?
Enough reminiscing :) Here are some great links to recipes for your harvest or your treasures from the local farmer's market --
Tomato Sandwich - It's a southern thing, but I could eat a tomato sandwich EVERY DAY when they are vine fresh! Two pieces of white bread - spread with Duke's mayonnaise - topped with sliced tomatos & a dash of salt and pepper ---- that folks is pure HEAVEN!
Cucumber Salad - Cool & light. It makes a great side dish.
Squash Dressing - You can lighten up this recipe.
Tomato Pie - Didn't think I'd like it, but I loved it.
Refrigerator Pickles - I like to add cloves of garlic to ours!
What's your favorite farm fresh recipe?