A week ago, fall arrived. Mornings in the high desert are always cool, but last Thursday dawned chilly and damp. Last Friday, we harvested in the cold and wet, and I was freezing all day. We had soup and warm savory corn muffins for lunch. Something about sitting around the table, sharing stories about being lost, eating delicious, wholesome food, while outside the skies were grey and the air was cool was really wonderful.
I took a walk yesterday, and wore long pants, wool socks, hiking boots, a hoodie and a thick vest. I walked down a county road about a quarter mile from the house, for about three miles, and discovered a horse ranch, a sign for something called the “Campfire Fellowship” and some beautiful rocks for bouldering. It was grey and cloudy the whole time, and on the way back, I got soaked with rain. I didn’t mind. Although many are lamenting the end of summer, I’m really enjoying this weather.
Yesterday I canned four quarts of carrot pickle with lime zest, coriander, cilantro, chili and mustard seed as well as two quarts of crisp cucumber pickles. I also baked two of the most righteous loaves of my bread baking career. I thought that they had overproofed, and was concerned about how they’d turn out. I need not have feared; they rose to a glorious height without collapsing, the crumb came out tender and elastic with just the right amount of chew, and the flavor – I added extra honey instead of molasses – is excellent (if I do say so myself…).
I am lamenting the lack of a wood stove just now, but with enough baking, pickling and canning, it might not matter!