[caption id="attachment_703" align="alignleft" width="225" caption="My mental vacation"][/caption]
I inadvertently took a little vacation from here over the last couple of weeks, while August was flying past and I stood in a daze and watched. Really, I've been hard at work on several projects, including the ongoing farmers' market experiment, occasional catering work, and a couple of articles! The article work includes some super secret recipe development....hopefully more about this in future posts when I can share it with you. All I can say is that there are lots of cheesecakes floating around the house over the past week!
I've had two highly successful farmers' markets since I've returned from vacation; successful means that I don't have to eat the remaining inventory Saturday night. I've managed to sell and trade most everything that I've brought with me. And the jams are popular, which means I need to find more fruit, pronto! I did a very small batch of apricot jam today, loosely following master preserver June Taylor here, and I jammed the rest of the black currants, which had been languishing in the freezer since mid-July. I've had such good Santa Rosa plums this year that I really want to do some plum jam, and maybe some peach....and maybe more strawberry with balsamic and pink peppercorns? We actually have a pick your own strawberry patch up here that does ever bearing berries, so the sign is up that they're ready again.
I've been having lots of thoughts about aroma and food, probably stemming from the highly aromatic oolongs that I've gotten my hands on from Rishi and In Pursuit of Tea. They are so fragrant without any flavorings added that they're like natural perfume. And speaking of natural perfume, I recently discovered Aftelier Perfumes. Mandy Aftel crafts her fragrances with only high-quality, natural essences, and they're truly exquisite. I haven't worn perfume in years (between the wine tasting and baking, strong scents aren't allowed), but I got a tiny sample of her Shiso scent to try. It smells like a geisha sipping tea outside by a stream, and it's subtle enough to wear on an everyday basis. I can also create my very own Earl Grey blend with the bergamot essence that I bought...I know, I'm a total food geek!
Now that I'm back, I promise to stay in touch since summer is winding down. Make sure to visit!