Archives for August 2017

Weekend Links + Photos: Sweet Summertime

There is a landslide of school supplies taking over our family room floor. Classes start on Tuesday and it’s time to sharpen our focus for another school year.

I’ve never been the mum who gleefully abandons the beach pails and picnic baskets to greet the school bus with cheers. I adore having the children around all summer, despite the challenges of juggling work (me) and play (all of us) for weeks on end, so the end of August is rather bittersweet.

This fall will be extra poignant, as Clara – teeny, tiny, little Clara – will be heading off to kindergarten. It seems like she just turned one not long ago, but that goes to show how quickly they really do grow up.

It’s been an incredible summer though, hasn’t it?

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Fresh tomato + peach Caprese salad with wild blueberries & thyme

I‘ve been enjoying a tomato salad nearly every day this month; it’s effortless eating when the tomatoes are ripening on the vine in my backyard and the kitchen garden is packed with herbs two feet tall.

Often the tomatoes are paired with briny olives and salty feta in an easy Greek salad and other times I dice them up for a Kale Tabbouleh with Cucumber, Mint and Garlic Scapes. Another favourite – and real crowd pleaser – is my Bloody Caesar Shrimp Salad, which combines tomatoes, celery and shrimp into a tangy dish perfect for quick Sunday lunch.

A recent creation that proved to be most delicious was the addition of sliced, fresh Niagara peaches to a Caprese salad. I served this riff on a classic at the start of the harvest dinner we hosted on the homestead a few weekends ago, and promised you the recipe. It’s a salad I serve at every harvest dinner, mostly because it is so delicious when prepared in season, but also because it is very easy.

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How to host a harvest dinner party

An outdoor dinner with friends to celebrate the season, in partnership with Beau’s All Natural.

There’s been a slight chill in the air since we returned home from a road trip through Southern Ontario last week.

While Niagara-on-the-Lake was blistering hot – hot enough to really sweeten the peaches we were picking – I’ve noticed I need to grab a flannel shirt when I’m heading out to the garden in the morning and evenings. The changing weather is just one reminder that summer is slipping away.

Here on the homestead, another sign of the season is our annual harvest dinner. It is summer’s last hurrah, a gathering of close friends for no reason other than celebrating the bounty of August produce.

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