It’s good to be home. The garden is loving the cooler weather; late plantings of greens are freaking out and we can’t keep up. The salads are as good as they were in the spring, and now they get to play against creamy winter squash. On Sunday we went apple picking with the gang, and bought peaches and plums as well to preserve. Today saw the happy combination of peaches, red onions, lime basil, honey, cider vinegar, and insanely hot Chinese paper lantern peppers (like habañeros, but bright red) into a chutney that will be great on duck and fish all winter.
Later, after the canning was done, I braised lamb shanks in red wine and garden goodness while the first kabocha squash of the season roasted in the oven. I used half a bottle of 2005 Nieto Senetiner riserva cabernet to make the lamb, and we drank the rest with it. For 10 bucks, this wine is a great value for fans of big, grapey cabs.