May: that glorious month in the Bay Area — the first burst of summer bringing sunshine, blossoms, stone fruit, and a thousand ideas of what to bake, preserve, and just plain gobble with peaches, and cherries, and strawberries at every turn. California is pressing forth in the wake of a drought and very little rain the last two years, so we’ll feel the scarcity of summer fruits later this season, I’d wager, and are already witnessing the price increases per pound of these beauties.
In the meantime, your May Short List (in June), posthaste.
1. The season’s first cherries.
And a quiet Saturday evening sitting on the stoop with my partner, sharing ginger beer and lager and spitting cherry pits across the driveway into a garden bed. The simplicity of it and our easy happiness all spelled L-O-V-E.
2. Homemade churros!
Nick’s sister had the ingenious idea to bring these to a work party, and it was the first time I’ve ever deep fried anything in my kitchen. Amazingly, it was simple! Dan used a pastry bag to pipe dough into the pan of oil, and before long we had piles of fresh churros which Andrea sifted in a mix of cinnamon-sugar.
3. Fresh strawberry ice cream.
And, um, overflowing the ice cream maker and being forced to eat the overfill right away…which, really wasn’t the problem I thought it would be. I added both lemon and lime to my blend of heavy cream and milk and sugar before adding it to the ice cream maker, and it created a very bright flavor.
4. Several rounds of Adventure Bread.
A delicious, dense, gluten-free loaf from Josey Baker Bread, it’s packed with seeds and nuts, all toasted to lend a beautiful earthy flavor. This bread is reminiscent of the European-style loaf from Trader Joe’s, except it’s 1000x yummier. So far, we’ve used almonds, sunflower, sesame, and pumpkin seeds, and I expect each incarnation of this loaf to become even more experimental.
A quick yet jam-packed trip over Memorial Day weekend was stunning; the weather was perfect, and we hit an amazing amount of tourist sights, tempered with downtime spent candlepin bowling, eating cannoli and ice cream, running the esplanade next to the Charles River, and visiting with friends. More on that visit to come.