A Day In The Manor

August 4, 2012 § Leave a comment

What is it about seeing old friends that you can pick up where you left off and you don’t miss a beat?  I love those friends!

We had a gorgeous Michigan beach day and a mid-day feast to  give us energy for the long summer day compliments of my dear friend, Kate.

The girls made a delicious and refreshing Watermelon Limeade.  I found a similar recipe from Martha Stewart with vodka.  I think tequila would be a nice addition instead of vodka for a summer cocktail too.  And don’t forget your Sharpie to mark your name on the cup.

Watermelon Limeade


  • 8 cups chopped seedless watermelon (about 6 pounds)
  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (about 4 limes)
  • 2 tablespoons sugar, plus 2 tablespoons more, if needed
  • 1/2 cup vodka, (optional)
  • Mint leaves


  1. Working in batches, puree in blender watermelon with lime juice and sugar until smooth. Add more sugar, if needed.
  2. Transfer puree to a pitcher; add vodka, if desired. Cover; chill until ready to serve.
  3. Stir; pour into tumblers, over ice. Garnish with mint.

And Mary surprised us all with her famous dip.

White Trash Bean Dip (with no beans)

1 8 oz block of Cream Cheese

1 15 oz can of Hormel Chili (no beans)

Heat, blend and serve.   How easy is that!!

Veggies, Veggies, Veggies…

We had our fill of the local farmers harvest.

Fresh Grilled Green Beans

Cucumber and Onion Salad (cucs fresh from the garden)

Tomatoes with Homemade Pesto and Shaved Pecorino

Couscous Salad with Feta, Tomato, Beets, Artichoke Hearts and Cucumber

Slow Cooked Pork Roast with Tangy BBQ Sauce (with a secret ingredient Oyster Sauce)

I don’t have Kate’s recipe, but found this one from Gourmet Magazine Jan. 2008.

 Tangy BBQ Sauce

•    1 cup chopped sweet onion
•    1/2 cup cup cider vinegar
•    1/4 cup packed brown sugar
•    2 garlic cloves, smashed
•    1/8 teaspoon dried hot red-pepper flakes
•    1 cup ketchup
•    1/2 cup Chinese oyster sauce
•    1/4 cup Dijon mustard
•    1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
•    1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
•    1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

Simmer onion, vinegar, sugar, garlic, and red-pepper flakes in a small heavy saucepan until onion is softened and most of liquid has evaporated, 10 to 15 minutes.
Stir in remaining ingredients and simmer, covered, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes. Purée in a blender until smooth (use caution when blending hot liquids).

And, oh, such happy endings…a fresh blackberry and peach tart.  The crust was divine (sorry you missed it Sara).

Here’s the closest thing I could find:

Peach and Blackberry Tart with Oatmeal-Cookie Crust



  • Nonstick vegetable oil spray
  • 2 cups oatmeal-cookie crumbs (made from about 32 crispy oatmeal cookies)
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted


  • 2/3 cup peach or apricot nectar
  • 5 tablespoons sugar
  • 5 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 2 2/3 cups coarsely chopped peeled peaches
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 1/4 cups large blackberries


  • For crust:
    Preheat oven to 375°F. Spray 10-inch-diameter fluted tart pan with removable bottom with nonstick spray. Mix cookie crumbs and melted butter in medium bowl until moist clumps form. Press dough evenly over bottom and up sides of prepared pan. Bake until dry, about 10 minutes. Cool crust completely. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover tightly with foil. Let stand at room temperature.)
  • For filling:
    Whisk nectar, sugar, and cornstarch in heavy medium saucepan until smooth. Add half of peaches and lemon juice. Using potato masher, mash to coarse puree. Simmer over medium heat until mixture is thick, stirring constantly, about 5 minutes. Cool completely. Fold in remaining peaches. Spread filling evenly in crust. Arrange blackberries around top edge of tart. Refrigerate until cold, at least 4 hours and up to 6 hours. Bring to room temperature before serving.

Come enjoy the summer in Pure Michigan.  Your trip begins at michigan.org.

I don’t know what it is about those Great Lakes- Michigan, Huron, Superior, Erie, Ontario…that takes the daily stress of life away and gives you peace.

As this trip comes to a close, we’re already looking forward to the next.

Goodbyes are not forever. Goodbyes are not the end.  They simply mean, I’ll miss you until we meet again…




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