From Garden to Pasta Pot: Homemade Marinara Sauce

Yesterday I hurriedly retrieved the last of the tender summer vegetables from our backyard garden. The bright, cloudless sky made it hard to reconcile the meteorologist’s forecast of a 40 degree temperature drop in a matter of hours as a significant winter storm blew in over the mountains. Life at high altitude promises weather extremes,…

Holding onto Summer with Slow-Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

Right around the third surprise March snowstorm in Colorado, I start daydreaming about shorts weather and fresh produce, longing for the days when I can step into my backyard and harvest the first tomatoes of the season. Every year we’ve planted tomatoes in our gardens, we’ve managed a good enough haul that we can share…

Operation Palisade Peach Preserves

Every summer since moving to the Front Range, I’ve happily anticipated the peach harvest from Palisade, Colorado, a stone fruit and grape mecca cultivated on the Western Slope. I have no qualms about stocking up on peaches while at the grocery store, but I prefer purchasing a box directly from friends connected to peach orchards…

The Solar Eclipse, Annie Dillard, and a Slice of Buttermilk Zucchini Bread

As the morning drew closer to noon, our unusually quiet house darkened to dusk while outside my backyard lay beneath an eerie light more akin to a burgeoning wildfire than an astronomical event occurring far beyond Earth. Burnt shadows cast themselves over our vegetable beds and dappled the cedar fence while doves cooed and tittered…