Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Apple of My Eye

Fall is, hands down, the most delicious time of year.  Not only does Pumpkin come cavorting from every corner (check out the bakery's schedule if you don't believe me!), but Apple is still happily appearing in everything from sauce, to crisp, to pie or au naturel (dipped in luscious caramel, of course!).

Last Sunday marked my family's annual trip to the apple orchard.  We tried a new one this year, Deardorff's just outside of Victoria, west of the Cities.  They have a winery, as well (shucks!).  It is the best orchard we've been to in a while: free admission, beautiful grounds (free),

a tractor ride to and from the orchards for picking (also free),

and all the Honeycrisp you could want or need...OK, you have to pay for those, but not, I guess if you're munching while you pick.  Which we do.  A lot.  Shhhhh...

My favorite apple of them all, though, is the apple breeding adventure from the University of MN, SweeTango!  These they didn't allow us to pick, but had them for sale in their store...and they're gold to me so I bought them (all $4 per pound of them), and I'll tell you why...

When I was ten, I developed an allergy to stone fruits (think apples, pears, plums, peaches, cherries, nectarines, you get the picture).  So what once was a cheery little fruit eater became a crabby little apple coveter.  I've spent my life since tasting the forbidden fruit from time-to-time, suffering the consequences of my little indulgence (itchy and puffy mouth, lips and throat) just to get my fix.  For some reason, the magic of SweeTango doesn't make me swell with anything other than joy!  Hard to believe, but it's true.  Normally not one to fool with Mother Nature, I thank the U of M for breeding an apple I can eat!

And thanks to the true apples of my eye, my nephew (small orange) and two nieces (one in red, the other in pink) for making all of our outings true adventures!

* * * * * * * * * *

What's For Dinner Tonight?

Tonight, we're thinking grilled pork loin chops spiced with Terry's secret pork rub (he won't tell me what's in it), roasted fingerling potatoes and salad.  Where once upon a time I rarely ate meat (my twenties were mostly meatless), I married a meat-and-potatoes boy who knows his way around a grill -- grilling nights are among my favorites.

Roasted Fingerling Potatoes
1 lb. fingerling potatoes
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
Salt & Pepper to taste

Heat oven to 475°.  Rub oil on potatoes, spread on baking sheet.  Season with garlic and s/p.  Roast for 25 minutes or until tender.

After Dinner Update:

Terry decided to cut the pork into medallions and they were grilled PERFECTLY -- so tender and juicy.  I don't know how he does it.  Potatoes were awesome as well.  Salad with a little Newman's Parmesan & Roasted Garlic dressing and pear tomatoes from the garden (about the ONLY tomatoes we got out of the garden this year!).

And guess what's for dessert??

Nighty night!

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