While summer always seems to arrive late in Portland, fall is our reliable season that knocks on our door right on time. While I look forward to pumpkin patches, boots and college football, saying goodbye to summer also means the end of grilling, eating outdoors and food coming from our garden and the farmer’s market.
The weather turned cool last weekend and the kids wanted to eat inside. Silly, silly kids…they don’t realize that we need to enjoy every last meal outside because it could be a solid nine months before we do so again. They are true Oregonians, having lived here their whole life, so to them everyone has nine months of cold, grey, wet weather.
As we cleared off our dinner table inside, my daughter asked when we last ate dinner at our family table. I don’t think we’ve eaten a meal there since school got out in June! We’ve been eating at parks, in our backyard and with friends so much that we had to dig around for our tablecloth.
It was nice to gather around our family dinner table, but it was that brutal reminder that fall is coming. And summer is ending. I’m really not ready and I don’t think a pumpkin spice latte will help. By the end of September I’ll likely be ready for fall, but right now I’m holding on to every last drop of sweet summer goodness.
Like our favorite summer dinners.
Did your family have any favorite meals this summer? I couldn’t attempt to guess how many times we ate grilled chicken with bbq sauce or some other marinade that my husband found. Vegetables like corn on the cob, zucchini, bell peppers, red potatoes and squash were lightly seasoned and grilled up almost nightly. I wish we had a lemon tree like I did growing up because my kids have had more than their fair share of lemonade on a hot day.
Did you try anything new? We’ve been experimenting with new ways to cook corn to get the juiciest results and believe we have found it! Oh, and it couldn’t be easier! With silk and husk still there, we submerge the whole cob in water for about an hour. Without fulling drying, wrap each cob (with silk and husks) well with foil and toss on the grill. They’ve turned out great by having them over heat for about 30 – 40 minutes, then on indirect heat while everything else cooks. Once done, I open the foil packets and let the steam out. The silk just pulls right off!
From a Martha Stewart recipe I learned to pull back the husks and use them as handles (I know!!) so I no longer pull them off. We make a big batch of honey butter every few weeks for corn on the cob, corn bread and biscuits that is just the right balance of sweet and savory. We don’t really eat much corn out of season so, for me, corn right off the cob is summer.
What says summer for you?