Friday, August 3, 2012

Farm Fragrance - Just Not What You Expect

Sweet, sweet flower vines

     Farm fragrances can be many things - many of which you would assume and then those maybe not expected.  The best fragrance in spring is the wild honeysuckle growing up and over the fence. The casual stroll around the farm during the day would take you near a white unassuming flower whose tangle of vines weave in and out of the fence. 

     Easily ignored in daylight, but at night, under the cover of darkness, when the senses of sight and sound are less likely to be bombarded, a stroll through the darkness brings a waft of air with the smell of a sweet, sweet scent.  It stops one for the moment just to inhale deeply and then the connection is made.  It's the honeysuckle.  There really aren't any words to do it justice.  July brings forth a second blooming of the honeysuckle, and although it is not as profuse as the first blooming, it still creates a magic scent in the nighttime air.   Eventually it will bring down the fence; it shouldn't be allowed to grow there. But the honeysuckle fragrance makes it worth the chance of ruining a fence.
Tempting isn't it?

     Nothing on a farm smells quite like a loft of newly cut and baled hay.  It's earthy and fresh from the growing field.  A fragrance that is almost enough to bring out the child personality to imagine the adventure created by climbing the bales in the nearly dark loft.  If only to be ten again. Climb where you know you probably shouldn't, but simply can't resist. Climb when just delivered because it would be too soon for spiders or their webs to crisscross your a face unexpectedly.  Climb on the hay that seems to feel soft, but leaves prickly welts from the cut ends that stick out of the bales. And of course, there would be the thrill of  potential danger that a slip of a foot or a bale of hay could send the unsuspecting down into a horse stall below. An injury would surely bring sympathy for this transgression, but should everything be OK except for some bumps and bruises - well one could only imagine the result for playing on this forbidden site. Most likely, only an adult could see this through to the possible end and back away from the tempting bales. Darn.

Peaches are in season.  This recipe adapted from could be described as WWC ( well worth the calories) as opposed to NWC ( not worth the calories). WWC once a year. 

   Southern Peach Cobbler
8 fresh peaches, skin removed, sliced thin
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
2 tsp cornstarch
1 cup flour
1/4 cup white sugar 1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
6 Tbs unsalted butter, chilled, cut into small pieces
1/4 cup boiling water
3 Tbs white sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon

   oven  425
1. Combine peaches, 1/4 cup white sugar, 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1/4 teaspoon
cinnamon, nutmeg, lemon juice, and cornstarch. Toss to coat evenly, and pour
into a 2 quart baking dish. Bake  10 minutes.
2. Combine flour, 1/4 cup white sugar, 1/4 cup brown sugar, baking powder,
and salt. Blend in butter with a pastry blender, until mixture resembles
coarse meal. Stir in water until just combined.
3. Drop spoonfuls of topping over cooked peaches. Sprinkle cobbler with the
sugar and cinnamon mixture. Bake until topping is golden, about 30 minutes.

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