It's Apple Eating Time
Thanks to North Star Orchards at Headhouse Square today, I tried an apple new to me, a Pearmain. There are a number of varieties of Pearmans, and I failed to ask Ike which one this was. Perhaps it was the American Summer variety.
Mostly green (with plenty of red tinge) this apple has an appealing tart-sweet balance and pleasing crunch (though certainly not as hard as a Granny Smith). I'm adding to my list of sought after apples. After undertaking some web research, it's no surprise I enjoyed the Pearmain: it's a cultivar of my all-time favorite, the Cox Orange Pippin.
In other Headhouse observations, Matt Yoder went back to Maine earlier this summer, so this field-bean growing enthusiast has split from his short-lived partnership with Tom Culton of Culton Organics. It's left to Culton to sell all those beans: he had plenty of dried cowpeas today, which make a great succotash with the last of the summer's corn should you find any.
Although the corn is fading fast, it's that wonderful time of year when fall produce is offered side-by-side with the last of summer. Tomatoes and peaches will probably be the next to disppear, but eggplants and cucumbers are among the summer produce items still around, as is the late season raspberry. Crisp-tender root veggies like celeriac (celery root), winter squashes, and fall fruits (grapes, apples, pears) help ease the kitchen transition. This is also the time to get paw paws with which you can make a variation on banana bread, cookies, cream or custard pie, cake or ice cream. And with the disappearance of extreme heat, local lettuces are back, like the red-tinged bibb variety I picked up from Earl Livengood at Fairmount's farmers' market .