It's that time of year again, the days start to get shorter, the sun no longer wakes me up before my alarm clock (now I actually have to start setting my alarm clock), and I must begin to convince myself that summer is on the way out. In fact, there is a distinct chill in the air, if only to remind me. Sigh. The weather is still nice. But the nice man at Frog Hollow told me we'd be lucky to have even another week of peaches (as I quickly add more to my shopping bag). I can't even find corn anymore. Cherries are sooooo last season. Strawberries are few and far between and I've heard they are not long for these parts. And tomatoes. Oh tomatoes. They are still here, and delicious as ever, but I know my time with them is limited. I am buying them almost on a daily basis now. They are part of nearly every meal I prepare.
But even though I am lamenting summer's dwindling bounty, a whole new crop of food is peaking and autumn treats are appearing. One of my favorites has appeared recently, my late-summer love The Cranberry Bean.
Those of us who know them tend to horde them. I see the occasional stuffed plastic bag with the tell-tale mottled pinky-red pods, firmly grasped in hand. Standing at the bin, I load up my bag as full as possible (knowing full well I'm going to have to lug it on Muni all the way home). But cranberry beans have such a limited season, it's worth it to buy all that you can. They are not only the most brilliant delicious creamy wonderful fresh legume on the planet (in my oh-so-humble opinion) but they freeze extremely well.
I really shouldn't be telling you all of this.