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Farewell to an Indian summer

This is my obligatory “it’s been raining” photo to set the mood…

So here’s the deal: the weather drastically shifted around 3pm on Thursday afternoon (2 weeks ago). It had been in the low 80’s that day – a perfectly warm Indian summer afternoon. Then, when I stepped outside to grab the mail, everything felt quite different; the temperature had dropped and a breeze picked up and starting kicking the leaves into a twirling waltz across sidewalks and into the streets. Fall was peaking its head through the rapidly approaching clouds. By Sunday afternoon it was raining, and by Friday of the following week, after one and a half inches of rain, the sun came back. Only, it was noticeably no longer a summer sun.

Since then, the mornings have turned crisp and cool. And despite the fact that it’s supposed to climb back into the 80’s by tomorrow (that’s Sonoma County weather for you), I have retired my flip-flops to the closet and started wearing long sleeves, and hats, and jackets. Fall has arrived. Perhaps a bit sooner than any of us expected or wanted; but it’s here nonetheless. Just when I thought we’d be sunbathing through October, it’s time to say farewell to any chance of an Indian summer.

My taste buds immediately shifted from ripe, juicy tomatoes and fresh, sweet corn, to spiced apples and autumnal squash, from barbeque and tomato salads, to soups and pastries.

Fortunately, just a few days prior to that Thursday – when it was still 85 degrees and beautiful, I took the time to seek out all my favorite summertime items, knowing that fall was swiftly approaching. See…

But alas, on Monday morning, I woke to more rain (which was unexpected) and comfort food was on my mind.

I have mentioned my struggles with photography in a previous post (Coleslaw For 100). I’m learning and trying new things to make the food pop in the picture. I feel like I did a pretty good job with the pictures above, right? But unfortunately, the featured recipe today is for potato and bacon hash with apples and thyme. And well, I found it’s pretty damn hard to make hash look awesome. Hash simply does not photograph well – despite a sexy, runny poached egg on top.

Add to the fact that I suck at poaching eggs and we have a recipe for a not-so-nice picture. However, I poached eggs, four, count ’em four separate times to get a photo that I deemed worthy of posting. Now that’s dedication! Because I really wanted to share this hash recipe with you! It’s so good, and seasonal, and oh-so-comforting on a dreary, rainy evening (brinner!) and as leftovers for breakfast.

But I digress… Farewell summer.


Potato & bacon hash with apples and thyme

2 Medium-sized Yukon gold potatoes, diced

1/2 medium, yellow onion, finely diced

1 clove garlic, finely minced

1 Fuji apple, diced

1 small rutabaga, diced

3 strips of bacon, diced

1 bunch rainbow chard, roughly chop

1 TBSP fresh thyme leaves

1 TBSP butter

1/4 Cup stock (chicken or vegetable)

Salt and pepper to taste

Bring water to boil and par-cook potatoes. Meanwhile, heat sauté pan on med-high and cook bacon bits; when done, remove from pan, leaving teaspoon or so bacon grease behind. Add butter to pan and sauté onions for 2 minutes. Add garlic and rutabaga and cook 3-4 mins. Add apples and chard, cook another 4-5 mins. Add stock and cover with lid to help soften rutabaga, cooking for 2-3 minutes; then add potatoes and thyme and cover with lid, cooking for 4-5 additional minutes. Season with salt and pepper and then toss bacon in and incorporate into hash. Serve on it’s own, or with a fried or poached egg on top.




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2 responses to “Farewell to an Indian summer

  1. It’s an awesome fall photo you have here. I also like your description of the changed weather, beautiful.

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