Thursday, September 16, 2010


So many recipes and so little time.  It is harvest time.  Time to freeze the pesto, roast the tomatoes, freeze the apple pies and cook the pumpkins.  Fall is a wonderful time to bake breads, apple cakes, pumpkin bars and other lucious goodies.  It won't be long before Halloween and Day of the Death yummies need to be prepared.  Just thinking about it makes my head spin.  Let's take a break and enjoy the wonderful pumpkins at the Holland Farmer's Market.

I love pumpkins, squashes and gourds.  I have an old gourd that, I was told, the first white settlers in Adair County grew to hold seeds or feed.  In Missouri, my dear friend Rabia brought me squash seeds from her home in Pakistan.  It was her favorite vegetable and she wondered if I would plant them for her.  I planted them in my donkey manure organic garden and we waited.  I left with my kids for our annual vacation at the cottage.  When I returned, the squash plants had taken over the garden, gone through the pasture and were almost to the house.  I am talking scary!!!!! here.  From all that vine, Rabia harvested one giantic pinkish sorta banana with a fat end shaped squash.  I was glad to see Jack Frost nipping at those vines that Fall.

Pumpkins on the ground.

Pumpkins on sticks.

One year I was admiring S&V's display of pumpkins when a woman walked up and said, "I've found Martha Stewart's pumpkin patch!!"

Pumpkins on shelves.

Pumpkins on pumpkins.


Pumpkins and gourds.

Birdhouse gourds, white pumpkins, and more pumpkins.

Gourds--a shape for any occasion.

Pumpkins with warts.

A perfect pink pumpkin.

I was so busy getting a picture of the light green gourd that looks like a star that I didn't buy it.  Darn!

Isn't fall a beautiful time of year in Michigan?

I have talked about our senses triggering memories and as I worked on this post I kept smelling Concord grapes.  Tom had purchased grapes at the market and they were on the table near my computer.  The smell brought back a very old memory from my childhood. I remembered when Grandpa would hang a muslin bag contraption up for my Grandma to strain the juice out of Concord grapes for jelly.  The smell of grapes would premeate the whole kitchen and beyond.  If the bag was squeezed or moved the jelly would be cloudy so everything had to be done just right.  My Grandma took great pride in her sparkling clear purple jelly.  She didn't enter it in contests or anything, she just took pride in providing the best for her family.  My favorite use of her jelly was when she put it in her filled cookies.  Big fat sugar cookies filled with grape jam just can't be beat especially when they are made by your Grandma.

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