Yesterday I ate a piece of Finnish hot pepper candy, a concoction made from licorice, hot peppers, and ammonium chloride. Ammonium chloride? Doesn't that sound like a dangerous chemical? It didn't smell awful, however, and a tentative lick of the hard candy was intriguing. So I popped a piece in my mouth, and it wasn't bad. Breathing through my nose while sucking on it gave me an illusionary whiff of bathroom cleanser, but it did clear the sinuses. I think it would make an excellent sore throat/cough drop.The candy was a gift to my son from an internet friend in Finland. There is always more bravery in numbers, so my son came over to share the culinary experience with me.
Lately I have been eating another, very American food that conjures up images of early autumn: apple pie. Every September we are awash with apple pies. We have two apple trees, a golden delicious and a red delicious, neither of which are recommended for my Deep South climate. Both also are at risk for apple cedar rust due to the many cedar trees in my area. Nevertheless, the trees continue to grow and produce lots of apples each year. I have suggested making applesauce or even freezing some for later use, but Lou likes to bake apple pies. Anyone coming through is likely to go home with one.
There is definitely a flavor of fall in the garden, though our temperatures are hanging in the 90s during the day. Already some leaves are beginning to turn.
Surely cooler weather is on the way. The garden is expecting it, and so am I. Most of the following images are from the woodland garden:
Here are some photos of the front garden, taken from across the front lawn. Everything has a buttery flavor to it, soft and golden:
Finally, peeking into the front garden from behind the blue bench:
All of this is just a taste of autumn, but it's enough to make me want more. I am so looking forward to the milder temperatures and the rich colors, which sometimes last well into December. Many of the plants will have a rebirth of sorts, putting out new growth and flowers. In our part of the country it is the perfect time for gardening.