Monday, September 1, 2014

September...And so it begins!

Yes, it will be 88 degrees today with humidity that hits you like a throat punch. And yes, tomorrow will be 94 degrees. But it doesn't matter to me because it's September. If I could, I would send you a bouquet of bright yellow, freshly sharpened pencils. Along with a brand new notebook where all the
pages are fresh, crisp and blank, along with a challenge to fill the pages, to make your mark!

I know that September is the ninth month of the year, but for some reason to me it's a renewal. Not just the start of a new school year, but after months of down time, days lacking a schedule, and meals on the fly, September challenges us to get organized, to get our acts together. It's a motivator! Once the wreckage of summer is gone, the days of September clean up good! Like fresh linen waving on a clothesline, they become unflappingly clean and crisp.

I saw the promise of September in the eyes of my nieces and nephews in the "back to school" photos posted on Facebook, which I share with you. I can only image that there are so many challenges in teaching young student these days. It's a wonder how teachers keep kids focused who live in a bedazzled world of  fast-action video games and the internet. And yet, in each photo, the excitement  of going back to the unique environment that they get to call their own, is evident. A room of peers, friends in the making. Drew, Lauren, Abby, Fallon and Cole, I am excited for you! Carpe Diem! You will learn what that means, so pay attention.

And what else does September bring us? The start of everything "apples" I am an apple snob. I eat them almost year round. Now, I can celebrate all the varieties in their freshest splendor. From Jonathon's to Jazz, from Galas to Pink Ladies, they are all starting to put on a show at local markets. Still a little too early for my favorite Winesap's (they debut in October), I will be sharing many recipes from slow cooked pork loin with apple glaze, to the best ever Applesauce bread with Kitchen Clatter readers over the next several weeks.

Which is another reason to love September! It is the official start of cooking season. While the long, warm days of summer brought us outdoors to the grill, fall brings us back indoors where we're no longer afraid of the oven competing with the air conditioner!

In fact, my fall hosting calendar is already taking shape with an "Appetizers Only Girls Night" planned, and a long promised Italian meal for the friends of my sons that helped move me in! And, it will be perfect timing!

Fallon & Cole
As farmers markets will soon be brimming with the harvest from a type of summer that, at least locally, as been a growers friend. Mild temps and just enough rain to keep things going. As a matter of fact, last week, as I past a farm that I go passed early every morning, it was the first time I had seen the irrigation system spraying man-made rain through the air.

September. The subject of so many songs and poetry, is upon us. It, like all autumn months do, speaks to me. Join me in its' celebration! Now, I just couldn't end without re- posting an easy, three ingredient cookie recipe that my niece Beth introduced me to last year. It quickly became a favorite of where ever I brought it. It smells like fall. It taste like fall. Amazingly easy, amazingly delicious. Let get's this season started!

  • 1 box Spice Cake Mix
  • 1 15oz can of pure pumpkin 
  • 1 cup of raisins 
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Grease cookie sheets
  • In large bowl, stir together the cake mix, pumpkin and raisins until well blended
  • Drop by rounded spoonfuls onto prepared sheets
  • Bake 18 to 20 minutes
  • Allow cookies to cool five minutes before moving to wire racks

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