Summer-time. Long days…relaxing weekends…fresh produce…family and friends….
The Fourth of July holiday combines all of these great things.
This year we celebrated July 4th the way we have for years. We enjoyed a great meal with a dear friend whose wife and three children were away. Afterwards we took a few pitchers of frozen drinks to our next door neighbor’s house and enjoyed fireworks and conversation with neighbors.
We cooked New York strips on the grill–this was the first day that it had not rained in almost a week.
Despite my poorly timed pruning this past fall, my hydrangea bushes produced enough flowers for our centerpiece.
This flag once belonged to my stepfather and was flown for many years from the porch of his Charleston house. Given the age of the flag, we prefer to display it inside these days.
With a counter-top full of ripe, home-grown tomatoes, I could not resist making a tomato pie. If you want my recipe, click here.
No Southern, summer gathering is complete without freshly boiled peanuts. I picked these up at Ruke’s Vegetable Stand on Mathis Ferry Road in Mt. Pleasant.
Watermelon. What else can I say?
We finished everything off with a delicious Blackberry Peach Cobbler using the fresh fruit I picked up at Boone Hall Farms vegetable stand. Below is the recipe I used.
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 1/2 cups plus 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 1/4 lb blackberries (5 cups)
- 2 lb peaches (6 medium), peeled, pitted, and cut into 1/2-inch-thick wedges
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 sticks (1 cup) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 1 cup plus 3 tablespoons whole milk
Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 425°F. Butter a 13- by 9- by 2-inch glass or ceramic baking dish (3-quart capacity).
Whisk together cornstarch and 1 1/2 cups sugar in a large bowl, then add blackberries and peaches and toss to combine well. Transfer to baking dish and bake until just bubbling, 10 to 15 minutes.
While fruit bakes, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt in another large bowl, then blend in butter with your fingertips or a pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add milk and stir just until a dough forms.
Drop dough onto hot fruit mixture in 12 mounds (about 1/3 cup each), then sprinkle dough with remaining teaspoon sugar. Bake cobbler until top is golden, 25 to 35 minutes. Serve warm.
Cooks’ note: Cobbler can be baked 6 hours ahead and cooled completely, uncovered, then chilled, covered. Before serving, let stand at room temperature 1 hour, then reheat in a preheated 350°F oven until warm, about 20 minutes.
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