August is the month that feels most like summer to me, when days melt lazily into each other and the sun feels that much warmer. It’s the perfect time to unplug. When we lived in the Midwest, my kids would start the new school year in early August, which never failed to feel strangely out of step – it was always September when I was growing up. This year it felt nice to push our vacation into that last full month of summer.
We spent a few weeks on the coast of Rhode Island; almost every day was so clear and beautiful, each sunset outdoing the last. I didn’t want it to end. Nothing makes me happier than looking at the ocean all day, and planning dinner around produce from the local farmstand – at this point in the summer that would be tomatoes, sweet corn, blueberries…and more tomatoes.
The cherry tomatoes I found at the market the other day were hard to resist, in a rainbow of colors. Usually my daughter eats them up by the handful straight out of the pint basket, as if they were the cherries they’re named after. Before they disappeared, I got the idea to make a cooked and raw salad, to get a little bit of the intensity I love about roasted tomatoes along with the burst of juicy freshness from uncooked ones. [Read more…]