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Archive for August, 2009

I am the proud owner or a new MacBook Pro thanks to my parents and uncle sam’s oh-so-generous tax-free holiday.  I love to take it everywhere. I whip it out of the durable waterproof messenger bag I purchased and sigh as I look at the sleek ergonomic design. Yes, I’m in love with this little electronic gadget. I hope it keeps me more accountable in the cyber world–no, not chat rooms or e-harmony, just more in touch with reality and myself through the blog. Oh yes the blog, I really must get to business and stop bragging.

Who knew organic green passionfruit could grow in Knoxville? Not I, probably not anyone other than the farmer who grew it. But, the good ole reliable market is always full of surprises. So, here I am with 12 lovely passionfruits, fragrant beyond belief. I really had to do some soul-searching to decide what I would make with these green jewels. I want to savour their flavor, be able to worship the chemical reactions that fill my mouth infinitely. I’m going to use the fruit in two dishes. One a simple ode to the passionfruit, the other an appreciation for the complexity it takes on when paired with other ingredients.

1. The Locavore Roll at Nama: Jaime, goddess of flavor creator of delicious hybrid sushi, is going to make me a roll using the passionfruit, tomatoes, buckwheat sprouts, thai basil and bell peppers (all grown in local soil).

2. Passion Fruit with Cream – Deborah Madison’s recipes in Local Flavors never disappoint. Here you cut the top of the fruit, add a spoonful of cream and eat. Take pleasure in the small things.

I know the passionfruit was listed last in the title, but I just couldn’t help myself, I had to start with it first. So, now I’ll restart from the beginning by telling you about the grapes at the market. They are perfect. It reminds me of the grapes I drew as a child with my deep rich purple crayon. They are muscadines, and muscadines are known for their tough skin and sweet fruit. Although many people dislike them for their skin, they are a joyous memory from my childhood. My grandfather grew grapes (muscadine) and created the most delicious grape jelly and juice from his vines. We were only allowed to drink the juice in the kitchen because the color stained everything it touched, including my lips which is I can honestly say I’ve had a purple mustache. After purchasing the grapes, I’ve tried to keep myself from eating them (they’re addicting) because I plan on making grape juice as an ode to my grandparents legacy  using this recipe I found at Chowhound:

1 cup of grapes
1cup to 1/2 cup sugar (depending on sweetness of the grapes)
placed in a 1/2 gallon canning jar
filled with spring water 
topped with a hot canning lid and ring
boiled for 20 minutes
Let sit for 2 months before drinking
Strain Grapes out of Juice before serving

Finally, after a trip down memory lane, I’ll tell you about the flour. The dear boys at the Colvin Family Farm are the most motivated teenagers I’ve ever met. They flaunt creative talent like that of a senior advertiser. They are well-read, preferring historical prose as opposed to modern day smut. They strive to be better today than they were yesterday. But their kind hearts deserve the most praise. With a bunch of carrots and a bag of freshly ground whole wheat flour, they made my horrible day worth facing. It was a tough day full of turmoil, angst, confusion and self-pity. But the small act of kindness they showed me, made me smile and leave my troubles behind (at least for a little while). But enough emotion, here’s what I’m going to make for my best friend Heather’s going away all-local potluck using the flour

Caramelized Apple Tart with Cinnamon Custard. Bravo

Well, I have nothing else to say except leave you with a quote I read today.

” What a power there are in words…Perhaps the basic secret the scientists never discovered, the first fount of life, is that which happens when a thought takes the shape in words.”

Ayn Rand from The Fountainhead

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