Whenever I visit San Francisco, I make a trip to its Ferry Building. Now Boston has its own market full of unique and artisan vendors, and I don’t have to travel as far. Located near Haymarket and Quincy Market, the Boston Public Market is unique – it’s a culinary adventure (you can eat gourmet donuts, local cheeses, fresh pasta or drink locally made tea, coffee, or hot chocolate). It’s a a gourmet lunch spot (try the smoothies, smoked fish, Vietnamese sandwiches, or ice cream). It’s a wedding and hostess gift go-to (buy wine, jams, cutting boards made from stone, and bowls turned from wood). It’s a market (fill your basket with flowers, locally grown vegetables, meat, and fish). Read more about it here:
When a friend first gave me her recipe for blueberry crisp, I had never heard of Annisquam. For some reason, I thought Annisquam was some place up in Maine.
It’s not – Annisquam is a beautiful waterfront village in Gloucester, Massachusetts. We visited one of its private beaches with friends on a beautiful summer day.
The next day, I realized where I’d heard the word before … in the title of one of my favorite recipes.
I’ve made Annisquam Blueberry Crisp with fresh blueberries in August and with frozen ones in January. I’ve made it with wheat flour and with gluten-free flour. Though the texture may vary slightly depending on the type of flour, it’s always yummy. The port is the secret ingredient.
Annisquam Blueberry Crisp
4 cups blueberries (or two 10-oz packages frozen, thawed)
1/4 cup ruby port
3/4 cup sifted gluten-free flour
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
Combine blueberries and port in a well-buttered, 1 quart baking dish. In a separate bowl, combine flour and brown sugar. Add butter, cut into bits and blend until the mixture resembles cornmeal.
Sprinkle the mixture evenly over the blueberries and bake in the middle of a preheated 375 degree oven for 30 to 40 minutes. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.
Serves 6 to 8
It’s been awhile since I’ve posted any of my travels. Here’s my answer to that childhood ubiquitous question.
Spring blurred into summer, beginning technically on June 21 but really on June 2 when I traveled to Tucson for an outdoor family wedding. The weather was hot, we wore shorts and ate blizzards from Dairy Queen in the town of Sierra Vista, Arizona (stay tuned for more details on Bisbee and Tucson).
In June, we took a trip to Provincetown and walked Boston’s Freedom Trail. We said good-bye to our Chilean exchange student, wondering when we would see her again, glad of the excuse for a future trip to South America.
In July, my family was consumed and overwhelmed with learning about and planning for my daughter’s through hike of the Long Trail. We explored Vermont – Manchester, Waterbury, and Stowe and hiked through the Green Mountains.
In August, we recovered from our Vermont travels with trips to the beach on Boston’s North Shore, bike rides, kayaks, and swims in local ponds. We listened to music at outdoor festivals, visited farms, ate lobster and pizza, and grilled. We picked flowers and basil and went for a ride in a plane.
Now that fall is quickly approaching, I’m scrambling to get a bit more summer in. I need at least one more trip to the beach, and many more kayaks, bike rides, and outdoor swims. I need to shop at more farmer’s markets, eat lots of tomatoes, fresh corn, and peaches, grill vegetables, make fresh salsa, gazpacho, and zucchini bread.
When the hot summer days cool off, I want to be ready. Ready to say good-bye to the heat and welcome sweatshirt weather and apple picking season, when I can still ride my bike and make apple crisp, and slowly get ready for fall.
Trip taken Summer 2015.
Even though spring is less than 2 weeks away, when I look outside, all I see is a winter wonderland.
So I put on my skis one day and my snowshoes the next and continue to make new tracks in the snow.
And I dream of warmer places: Hawaii, Santa Barbara, Florida, where green and blue overrule white and brown as the predominant outdoor colors. Where 45 degrees isn’t balmy. Where the sun is warm on my bare shoulders.
I keep reminding myself, April will be here soon.
If you’re like me, and you like the snow, but after awhile, you long for a change of scenery, you’ve got a few options.
1) Embrace the cold and sled, snow shoe, or ski. (See my post “How to Survive a New England Winter.“)
2) Look for warmth.
In between snow storms this past week, I stopped in at the greenhouse at Water Fresh Farm in Hopkington, Mass.
I dined in front of a fire at Red Barn Coffee Roasters in Southborough, Mass.
And I visited the Wayland Winter Farmers’ Market inside a greenhouse at Russell’s Garden Center in Wayland, Mass., where people ordered pizza from a mobile wood fired pizza truck, tasted wine and cheese, bought root vegetables, jams, fish, meat, and even mushrooms.
Where will I go next week? The forecast is for more cold. Maybe this time, I’ll go for option number 3 and get on a plane!
There’s nothing like getting a month’s worth of snow in a few days!
After a brief snow storm on Saturday, January 24, 2015, about 5 inches of snow fell on our outside table before the rain compressed it. Here’s what the table looked like on Saturday and pretty much what it looked like when we went to bed on Monday night.
Here’s what it looked like at 7 a.m. on Tuesday morning.
At 8 a.m.
At 9 a.m.
The dog still hadn’t been out. So, we started shoveling and blowing. It was 17 degrees, and windy.
It kept snowing all day. At 4 p.m., I took this photo.
At 7 p.m., I took this last photo.
We stayed warm and never lost power. Instead, we went snow shoeing. Today, after shoveling again, I’ll be out on my skis.
It was 15 degrees this morning in Boston, and it’s not even winter yet. I’m inside by the fire, drinking a cup of coffee, and remembering a warmer day in Rockport, Mass., just a few months ago.
Trip taken June 2014.
Today is Patriot’s Day, 239 years and a few days since the shot was fired and heard round the world. The lantern was hung, Paul Revere rode his horse, the Minutemen marched, and so began our fight for liberty.
Today is the Boston Marathon, a year and a few days after the marathon bombing, when the world supported Boston and the community came together. We were Boston Strong in 1775. We are Boston Strong in 2014.
We will always be Boston Strong.
Do you love baseball and the Red Sox? Are you gluten free? Did you know that now you can have your Fenway frank on a gluten-free bun at Fenway Park?
At Fenway Park, not only do they have gluten-free hot dogs, you can also buy gluten-free pizza, whoopee pies, brownies, and cookies. Oh, and their cotton candy, popcorn, soft serve ice cream, and Cracker Jacks are gluten free as well. Check out this list and this map. They even sell gluten-free beer!
Go Red Sox!
While traveling in Paris many years ago, my American friends introduced me to the Moscow Rule. Not to be confused with the Moscow Rules, this rule has to do with shopping and souvenirs and is fairly simple. If you see something, buy it, because you may never see it again.
My friends told me that this rule originates from people standing in line in Moscow. If you lived in Moscow under Communist rule and saw people standing in line, you joined them, because whatever they were waiting for you most likely needed or would need and you may not have the opportunity to buy it another time.
Although I try to remember this rule when I travel, the times I forget are the times I regret. Like the time I didn’t buy the metal toy truck in Cape Town because I knew we’d see several more during our trip (we didn’t).
Or when I didn’t buy a drum and then had to resort to the airport gift shop. Or when I passed up a pretty necklace at a price I saw quadrupled in future stores.
Sometimes it’s easy to remember, like buying Lindt chocolates in Zurich, wool scarves with the family clan in Edinburgh, or maple syrup in Vermont. I find it more difficult to remember when I see something different. Is it something I truly want? Is the price a good one? Will I see it again?
To prevent those post traveling blues, remember the Moscow Rule: if you see something unique, something you’re unlikely to find online or anywhere else, snatch it up, because you may never see it again. Most likely, you won’t regret the purchase, and the memories it holds will bring smiles for a lifetime.