Hey Nashville - What Time is It?

It’s canning time again in Tennessee! I spent the better part of Sunday taking ingredients which I had in my refrigerator left over from a couple of catering jobs that I did not want to lose - tomatoes, raspberries, blueberries, Georgia peaches, fresh herbs, squash, onions, carrots and peppers – turning them into fresh tomato vegetable ragout, mint, basil, lemon raspberry blueberry conserve, peach preserves and spicy tomato jam. There was much chopping, sautéing, simmering and boiling going on as I made each recipe – mostly extracted from my head – and then painstakingly canned them and labeled them for later use. I think that a visit to your local Farmer’s Market or your favorite road side stand is in order! The Alabama, South Carolina, Georgia and Tennessee produce is coming in fast and furious and tasting like never before. Even if you just buy enough for dinner tonight, it is worth the time and effort to get some great regional and local produce to enjoy on these wonderful hot, summer nights. You can scroll back till last year and look at my previous blogs to find out where some of these great Farmer’s Markets are but I will list a few here:

Nashville’s Farmers Market, 12th South Farmer’s Market, West End Farmer’s Market, Hip Donelson’s Farmer’s Market, Green Door Gourmet and The Produce Place – just to name a few.

As I was cooking, I was listening to some favorite music. I have just purchased tickets to see Steeley Dan and Elvis Costello in concert at Ascend Amphitheater on August 8th. I decided to listen to some Elvis Costello on Spotify to refresh my memory of his music. What a great addition to the cooking – tantalizing smells and hip music! I was not familiar with this new venue – Ascend Amphitheater until I saw a post on Facebook from my nephew about the Steeley Dan concert. The list of artists coming to Nashville in the next few months to perform here is quite impressive. Let’s take August, for example:

Aug. 1 – Chicago and Earth, Wind and Fire

Aug. 4 – Phish – unfortunately SOLD OUT!

Aug. 6 – My Morning Jacket with Moon Taxi

Aug. 7 – Counting Crows

Aug. 8 – Steeley Dan with Elvis Costello

Aug. 14 – Smashing Pumpkins with Marilyn Manson

Aug. 15 – Idina Menzell

Aug. 16 – Peter Frampton with Cheap Trick

Aug. 18 – Sublime with Rome, Rebeletion, Pepper and Mickey Avalon

Aug. 22 – Australian Pink Floyd and Ledzepplin2

Aug. 28 – Old Crow Medicine Show

Aug. 29 – Uncle Kracker, Sugar Ray, Better Than Ezra and Eve6

Here are a few appearing in September and October – ZZ Top, Widespread Panic (2 dates), Darryl Hall and John Oates, Flo and the Machine, Jackson Browne, Janet Jackson and the list goes on! You can check out the dates and ticket purchase and availability information at their web site – www.ascendamphitheater.com.

Happy eating and listening!

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