Cat Days of Summer
Chocolate Box Cottage Diary, Volume 2
Week 30: July 30, 2022
As Sam’s weather station registered 100 degrees and above day after day, the cats held a meeting. An unlikely ringleader presided. “Dog days of summer” was deemed pointless, as the dogs are indoors, so the hottest days of summer were renamed: Cat Days of Summer. (Caps necessary)
- Jasper, the unlikely ringleader, used my own planner against me
- Pearl appears soft and sweet, but she means business
- Toby likes to throw his weight around
Cats are very persuasive, so of course they had their way. They are naturally making all kinds of unreasonable and excessive demands:
1. Supplemental rations of tuna, as “cat days of summer” are too hot for hunting
2. Revolving door policy. Fancy way of saying I must open the door to let them in/out at their whim
3. Fresh running water, continually available
4. No petting or brushing of fur, whatsoever
Etc, etc, ad nauseam
We say goodbye to July; the surrounding landscape turns tan and crisp.
Bunnies were relocated to the kitchen…in cat carriers. The frozen milk jugs just couldn’t keep them cool enough.
Hands down the most amazing fruit salad I have ever had, street food style. This man started with perfectly ripe fruit: pineapple, cantaloup, watermelon, cucumber, and mango. He peeled everything and cut it in bite-size chunks, layered it all in clear deli cups and added a generous amount of chili sauce and fresh squeezed lime. Oh. My. Goodness.
Hot summer supper of mostly watermelon with a little cold chicken and bread and jam. Homemade Bread and homemade Vanilla-Laced Pear Jam!
We say hello to zucchini; the squash plants turn up the volume!
A honeybee visits a squash blossom; tiny spaghetti squash are forming.
Fortunately I have an endless supply of delicious but non-cat-approved recipes that use zucchini: sautéed, zoodled, julienned, fried, stuffed, frittered, and more – all perfectly scrumptious! Above is the simplest treatment of zucchini: Tender Crisp Sautéed Zucchini with onion and garlic. Mmmm!
Julienned yellow crookneck squash and zucchini join sliced radishes in the salad bowl with a mustardy vinaigrette that is down-right crave-worthy.
Grilled squash are always welcome with steak or any kind of grilled meat! These 4H/FFA steaks were the best we have had in a very long time.
Zucchini Fritters with a bowl of garden fresh salsa make a welcome evening meal in the heat of summer.
On my belly in the garden, seeing things up close. That is Persian basil on the right. The vintage A-frame greenhouse is behind me.
A recipe for you Ankarsrum Assistent mixer owners, perfect for summer! Mix up a big batch of freezer bread dough with your super-mixer and divide it into 1-loaf portions to freeze. Later you can thaw, shape, and bake one loaf each week and have a fresh loaf each week for a month!
Two mean roosters had to be culled. They were too mature for good eating, but will make excellent soup or broth. We raise chickens for eggs and generally purchase broiler chickens from local producers, so we do not have chicken processing equipment. The simplest way Sam has found to process a bird or two is to skin it. This way we can avoid plucking.
The Vegetable Butcher by Cara Mangini. If you want to learn knife skills for vegetable cookery, this is your book. All the cuts are illustrated clearly and lots of great recipes using veggies!
Check my favorite online seller of used books using my sharebooklove link. Click the highlighted link in the previous sentence and then type the title of the book into the search bar when you get there. If they don’t have it in stock, create a wish list and add this book to it. Using my link earns us both points towards free books! Thank you for supporting my business, I appreciate it.
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I hope you enjoyed this lighthearted view of a hot summer week at Chocolate Box Cottage. If so, you might enjoy following Chocolate Box Cottage on Facebook.
Thank you for reading and God bless you!