Wednesday, September 9, 2009

End of Summer in Maine

Photo by Deb Cram of Seacoast Newspapers

Only in Maine … as hundreds of thousands of tourists left our state this past Monday they were thanked for visiting by a friendly Maine moose and six foot tall red lobstah. Traffic was backed up on Labor Day for miles from 11:00 am to after 7:00 pm both north and south of the York toll booth on Route 95. All the people patiently waiting inside their cars seemed a little surprised but smiled and waved as the moose said farewell and you have to think it broke up the boredom a little, especially for the kids.

We apparently had a great weekend at Stonewall Kitchen in the York store and the Rochester warehouse, where we were having a big sale all weekend, was mobbed. The people who work in York mentioned that people were getting off the highway looking to take a break from the traffic and shopped a little while they stretched their legs. What a great way to end a vacation.

Even though my three kids are grown and long gone from home I still get nostalgic at this time of year. Winding down the summer and seeing the kids back on the buses seems to happen quicker and quicker each year. The days have already gotten shorter and believe it or not it was down to 48° when I went out early this morning. It happens so fast here in Maine.

One good part of the change of seasons is that I definitely cook more, and cook differently. I switch from quick salads and grilled meats to roasting and making hot meals that take longer to cook. I am really lucky to have been given tons of tomatoes from my friends’ gardens. So making tomato soups and roasting tomatoes for sauces is fun with fresh tomatoes. Wondering if anyone has any other ideas for using up all those tomatoes! We’ve got a few good recipes on our website for Stonewall Kitchen and for people not lucky enough to have home grown tomatoes you can use our Roasted Tomato Grille Sauce. It really does taste like fresh tomatoes and is great in chili and pulled pork.

More later … as way of introduction my name is Cynthia and I have worked here at Stonewall Kitchen for 10 ½ years. I wear lots of hats, executive assistant, copy writer, part time prop/food stylist and basically anything else that comes my way. It is never boring here for me! I have lived in York for over 30 years, it is a beautiful community and I can see what all those tourists came to visit this summer!

-Cynthia Maranhas

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