Warm days and cool nights, the blessing of Autumn. I keep hoping that the days don’t continue to get cooler, but they are and that is the circle of the seasons. Not only that, but we are to be content in all things so I look for the blessings of winter that are right around the corner. I will share them with you as soon as I can remember what they are (written with a smile).
This week we actually switched from apples to picking pears. Now these weren’t the regular Ozark pears, small and hard, these were pears bigger than baseballs, bigger than I’ve ever picked before. One of our neighbors has a glorious pear tree that she says is at least seventy-five years old. It is so large that even on a ladder with a picker, we couldn’t reach the pears at the top. We are grateful for her kindness of letting us pick a few bushels and then, to return with a dear friend to pick more for her family. Even so, you couldn’t tell any fruit had been picked, the tree was still heavily loaded with the biggest pears I have ever seen. The tree owner advised me to lay out the pears on newspaper for two weeks before working them up so that’s exactly what we did. I figured she knows her pears best so I would follow her lead with them. What a blessing to have neighbors that are more than glad to share their bounty with others.
We took a day out and headed over to the produce auction. It truly is one of our favorite things to do. Every year at this time, we face saying good-bye to old friends and the new friends we have made at the auction, for the winter and we look forward to the first one next year. It reminds me of children saying good-bye to their friends at the end of the school year and their excitement to see their friends again in the fall.
The produce there always looks so good, I couldn’t resist buying two large boxes of sweet bell peppers to put into the freezer for the winter soups and stews. The peppers were bigger than my fist and came in every color, bright reds, oranges and yellows. I enjoy cooking with all of the beautiful colors during the winter to remind me of the garden and God’s variety that He has given us for our enjoyment and delight.
We also brought home a few large boxes of yellow tomatoes for canning up some yummy tomato soup for a cold winter day. Our daughter loves tomato soup made from yellow tomatoes so it was exciting to be able to get enough of them for a batch of soup.
I can’t forget to tell you about my interesting learning experience this week. Some of you may not believe that I have never tried it before, but we found some freshly made sorghum. For those of you who are like me, this is for you. We’ve been used to only what you can buy in a store and let me tell you, if you have never had fresh sorghum before, you are missing out. I have always based my opinion of sorghum on what is in those fancy labeled jars that look a bit homemade in the store and they always left me wondering what the big deal was about sorghum. Now I know! At first I was only going to get one jar. Then the sweet lady told me to taste it, so I did. Instantly I realized why some people loved it, so we ended up bringing home three jars…..until the next day. I knew we would use up those three jars quickly after I had looked up several recipes to use it in, so we went back and bought five more quarts. It still won’t be enough to get us through until a new batch is made next year, but I will be content with what we have until then.
I think I’ll make up a batch of bread with it today, and if it’s as delicious as I think it’s going to be, I’ll share the recipe with you next week!