Damn you, Florence and the Machine

The dog days of summer are supposed to be over. According to the Farmer’s Almanac, the “dog days of summer” are the sultry, hot-ass days from July 4-August 11. It was still in the 90s when we hit September.  Seriously, Colorado?  Seriously?  Shouldn’t you be confusing me by alternating pleasurably warm days with days where I’m out in shorts and a t-shirt and then, seemingly by cosmic accident, snow starts falling from the blue sky?  Because that’s how I remember you.

I don’t remember being such a summer hater before going to Texas. I think it ruined me for hot weather entirely.  Like when I drank too much Jaegermeister in a college bar and ended up vomiting an entire, undigested quesadilla into the only sink in the bar bathroom, and now I can’t drink Jaegermeister EVER.

I’ve always preferred spring, sure. But I’ve never sat and resented the summer like it were an ex-girlfriend, thinner than I am, showing up to my wedding. I don’t think I’ve had a single margarita all summer, for example. Sure, plenty of wine.  Too much wine.  Screw you, wine. Stop judging me. But no margaritas, no swimming pools, no cookouts, no camping…I’m failing at summer.

Really the only thing getting me through is the produce. Our garden is making lots of it, and the market is just overflowing with ripe, sensual fruits and vegetables. Our garden made a zucchini that was bigger than my femur. The morning that I picked it, and one of its normal-sized siblings, Chris elected to sleep later than I. I woke him by slipping a zucchini, still warm from the sun, into his c-curled hand. I chose the normal-sized one instead of the leg-sized one, lest I give him a complex. Zucchini is not my favorite vegetable, but it sure does make for a good weiner prank.
And the tomatoes. OH, the tomatoes. Is there nothing better than a tomato, fresh from the garden, bursting with summer flavor? It’s the reason for the season. The baby Jesus of summertime, and I mean that in a very reverential, totally not sacrilegious way.

*Angels singing*

The BLTs are a thing of beauty, too. No matter how simple, they just end up breathtakingly delicious and summery and light, which is nice because nobody wants to feel full AND oppressively hot.

Here’s an interesting fact– slab bacon from Niman Ranch (or any other non-factory bacon) doesn’t shrink in the pan. It doesn’t battle you for your entire cooking experience by trying to curl up like a dead shrimp and going from 8 inches to 3 curled up inches of sadness like a reverse erection. That’s because there’s a greater percentage of ACTUAL fat and muscle, and far less water content. It’s thereby cheaper to buy non-CAFO bacon, and it tastes better. I’m telling you, if you haven’t tried it, you need to. It makes all the difference in the world.

Bacon, lettuce, homemade garlic aioli, garden tomatoes, shredded basil, and cracked black pepper on a couple slices of local hippie bread. OMNOMNOMNOM.

Our tomatoes are still coming in, hot and heavy, though the past couple of days have been cool-ER, so I fear for their longevity.  How cold does it have to be to kill my tomatoes?  Does anyone know?

If tomatoes, corn, and melons were winter crops, I’d write a strongly-worded letter suggesting we abolish summer entirely.  Sadly, I think that the melting snow cap and Al Gore’s ever-widening ass cap are telling me the opposite is happening.

Also, here’s a picture of the new kitchen, for those who haven’t seen it.  It’s glorious.  And I’m shopping daycares right now to see about getting some time to USE the kitchen, and my computer, to create documents which I can then post on the internets.  Like this one.  Won’t that be nice?

3 thoughts on “Damn you, Florence and the Machine”

  1. Oh man, I could eat tomatoes all day, every day. The only tomato I don't really like is a beefsteak tomato. But sweet vine tomatoes are the bomb, especially for sauces and ragus, and miniature pearl tomatoes are my new snack candy.

    Beautiful kitchen! You could do a TV cooking show or a youtube series in something that size. I have extreme envy for your island with the induction cooktop. =)

  2. tomatoes – they're generally done for when you get a hard freeze (approximately 4 hours of temps at 32 or below). though they definitely start not doing well when the temps get to the mid 30s – so I'd start covering them with sheets at that point. You can usually save them through one freeze, but after that your days are numbered.

    You can pull all green tomatoes off the plant before a freeze – some that are close to ripening will continue to do so, and you can turn the others into something like green tomato chutney, or fried green tomatoes.

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