Sunshine sauce 790 xxx
photos by gluttonforlife

10.7.11 Liquid Sunshine

Indian summer. We bandy that phrase around quite a bit at this time of year, hoping to conjure up those crisp, sunny days. The expression has been used for more than three centuries, first described in 1778 by John Hector St. John de Crevecoeur, a French-American writer in rural New York: "A severe frost prepares it to receive the voluminous coat of snow which is soon to follow; though it is often preceded by a short interval of smoke and mildness, called the Indian Summer." Its etymology is debated. In Colonial New England, Indian Summer referred only to a January thaw, when Native American raiding parties could be expected in the western and northern areas; the ground had briefly lost its snow cover so tracking the raiders back to their winter camps was much more difficult for the Colonials. Or perhaps it's because this was the traditional period during which early Native Americans harvested their crops of squash and corn. The modern use of the term refers to a period when the weather is sunny, clear and above 70º, after there has been a sharp frost; a period normally associated with late-October to mid-November. It's also used metaphorically to refer to a late blooming of something, often unexpectedly, or after it has lost relevance. (See "middle-aged women.") We haven't actually had the first frost yet—though the temperatures veered awfully close just this morning—but, after a week or two of brisker day, we're expecting a veritable heatwave—77º this weekend. I'm not sure how I feel about that, though it may mean we get to pull a few more tomatoes off the vine. For those of you still reaping summer's bounty, cook it down to the essence of sunshine: a brilliant yellow, sharp and fruity Sunshine Sauce.
Tagged — Indian Summer