"When summer's beginning to give up her fight..."

Well it's official.  Summer has rounded the last corner.  Last weekend when we were on the boat the light on the lake was just different.  The earth has done that magical tilt that it does this time of year making the high sun seem not so high.  This afternoon while I was bringing in peppers for dinner, I was breathing in the beginning of fall.  You know the moment.  The one where you can, all in an instant, smell the leaves and wood and smoke.  It made me sad and nostalgic and totally jazzed all at the same time.  Fall is my season (I am an October baby) and I absolutely love every single thing about this time of year.  The food, the smells, the memories, the weather, the football, the festivals.  All of the goodness comes together this time of year.  So while I am mourning the passing of this unimaginable and beloved summer, I am certainly giddy with anticipation and ready for what this next season holds.  

The picture above is of my gorgeous tomato plants giving it one last hoorah of the season.  I have lots and lots of new tomatoes on the vines since Steven re-staked and that stake is 10 feet tall.  It's OK if you are jealous.  I totally would be too.  I will repeat that it is not our magic green thumbs, but the black gold dirt they call home.  And if we don't get some rain soon it will be black gold dust.  It is supposed to rain slow and steady over the next day and a half, so my fingers are crossed.  My front porch planters just need to be scrapped.  They are tired of trying to hang on.  The pumpkin vines are just not looking good either.  I'm not so sure they are going to make it.  If it rains like it's supposed to I think I am going to plant a few more this weekend with the lettuce and greens that are going in.  I am fighting the urge to go ahead and put some mums out.  It is too early to have them pretty by Halloween.  I would have to pinch them all back and try to time it just right and, well, quite frankly it's just too much flower work right now when the garden is going to need some time and attention these next few weeks. 

  While outside today, I had just enough poblanos ready to do something with for dinner in addition to tomatoes that were at the cook or compost stage.  I also had about a pound of ground lamb/beef mix that needed to be used and decided to do some Chile Rellenos.  I believe Rick Bayless to be an exceptional chef and he proved me correct once again with this recipe. 

It calls for almonds and raisins in the filling and cinnamon and a healthy dose of black pepper in the tomato mixture.  Those flavors marry into a sauce and filling that, paired with the smoke and spice of the poblano, are sublime.  Don't skimp on the time he calls for in the simmering.  It is absolutely what makes it all work and the intense depth of flavor would not be there without it.  The batter is light as air and looks like a souffle batter when it's finished.  Such a lovely, lovely dish.  Worth every bit of the time and effort.

  I am having to come in earlier from watering in the evenings, but at least we can sit outside and not suffocate from the heat.  I can't wait to see what menu items are out there waiting for me over the next few weeks.  I have been hoarding all of the lamb cuts we have been getting through our CSA in order to pull them out over these next months.  Those lamb shanks are BEGGING to be braised with some fall veggies.  So here's to the beginning of another beautiful season and a fond farewell to the sweet summer.  What a glorious summer it was.      


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