Summertime as a kid is idyllic.  My own summer memories are hazy and luminous, much like those ultra hip and oh so romantic filters we all love to use on our instagram photos.  When I think of those long-ago summer moments there are two things that go along with them:  a soundtrack and a menu.  The soundtrack encompassed many a genre and a wide range of vocals but the menu itself was a simple feast.

During the summer months my Grandma Helen would look after the motley crew of us all known as “the children of the corn”.  In the afternoons we would be banished from the house (she watched her soaps), and we would often bike down the short dirt road to our Great-Grandparents farm to explore.  Our first stop was the kitchen, for a cookie, of course.  While I enjoyed the cookies, I was notorious for sneaking into the berry patch to where the raspberries were.  Careful not to get scratched (or caught!) I would have my fill of soft yet firm sun-warmed berries.  The flavour and sweetness imparted by these berries has lasted a lifetime.  Later on, when we had our own farm, it was the tomatoes I would eagerly wait for.  When they began to appear I would take bites out of them – just like one would an apple.

These memories of flavour are what I like to refer to as a “taste of my childhood.”  Its funny how certain flavours or foods can transport us back to a person, a place, or a feeling.  Suddenly you can close your eyes while tasting the flavours and be someplace else again.  I can’t wait to taste fresh raspberries and be transported back in time.  A time when I had tangled hair, tanned skin, skinned knees and mosquito bites.  A time when my smile was only ever mischievous and a time when I was certain that the dog days of summer would never end.  But this year, even more then the raspberries, I am craving that first bite into a sun-warmed tomato because my Dad and I used to eat them like apples.

Here’s to looking forward to growing the tastes of childhood this year and being transported back to long ago summer moments and flavours.

Alison