Fall Food Fiesta, Grapes
August 27, 2014
I look forward to all the changes of seasons, but fall makes me think about food and the farm. My grandfather grew concord grapes on his farm in Arkansas. He sold his crop to Welch’s but we had plenty to eat, juice and make jelly. My grandmother had a farm kitchen with everything in super large industrial sizes. She milked the cow and sometimes when I was young she even made butter in a churn. That was some kind of demonstration for me, because she could. Jelly production involved a mountain of grapes and a giant sieve to strain the solids. I have strong memories of their farm, but my favorite part by far was the grape vineyard. My love of concord grapes has never left me. Of all the fruits I think it will always be the one I wait for and want the most. This may also be because living in Arizona I can’t get my hands on very many and the season goes fast. I am happy that I have found a variety known as Thomcord at Safeway early in the season. This small seedless table grape is reminiscent of the concord deep flavor, but without the seeds and the slip skin. It is like concord light. I rather like the slip skin, but I am fond of the way I can eat these non stop. I like to snack on all kinds of grapes, but there are some extra cool ways to use them in cuisine and at the bar too.
The seedless varieties are less intense in flavor but lend themselves well to:
I would use the real concord with seeds and full flavor for the perfect versions of:
I am looking forward to some deep purple cocktails this season:
What are your favorite varieties of grapes and how do you like to use them? I always love learning new customs and recipes.