This happens every year. June and July swoop by in a sweaty haze, then August shows up and before we have a chance to catch our breaths, it's almost time for the holidays.
The only thing that's helping me come to terms with the unyielding passage of time is the fact that the rest of the year is going to be delicious.
Once we get into September, holiday fever begins to creep, and with it comes an array of ways to celebrate food: the excuse to work pumpkin flavor into everything (there are rumors that everyone's favorite Starbucks latte returns Sept. 6), the chance to make bubbling soups and stews in "cooler" (read: below 80 degrees) weather, and the gluttony of Thanksgiving and Christmas feasts.
Which reminds me.
It's time to start soliciting reader recipes for our annual Holiday Issue.
Every year, we reach out to our readers and ask for holiday recipes, some of which get featured in a special issue of Taste. For a decade-plus, it was Christmas cookies. Last year, it was any holiday dessert. This year, we're opening it up even more in the hopes of creating new traditions.
So, send us any holiday recipe that means something to you — be it a dinner entree, a standby appetizer or a beloved dessert — and along with the recipe send a note (no longer than 200 words, please) about why it's so meaningful. Send your recipe submissions for the Holiday Issue by Sept. 18. Mail to Tampa Bay Times, Taste Holiday Recipes, 490 First Ave. S, St. Petersburg, FL 33701 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org and put HOLIDAY RECIPES in the subject line. For all submissions, include your full name, city of residence and a phone number and/or email address in case we have questions. (Your phone number and email will not be published.)
We'll pick some of these to anchor our Holiday Issue, which runs the first week of December. (That means we typically don't choose Thanksgiving-specific recipes.)
For now, we're still enjoying the seasonal produce of August, which is on display in this week's recipe. Fresh corn goes into a kale and farro side dish that accompanies pork chops dressed with a simple but gorgeous plum salsa. Look for red plums that are soft to the touch — they'll be sweeter.
Contact Michelle Stark at email@example.com or (727) 893-8829. Follow @mstark17.