We’ve been traveling a little lately, both on the roads and byways, but also the virtual highway. As you know we recently visited Larry and Bev at “Almost Heaven South” on beautiful Lake Tellico and attended a wonderful blogger get-together.
We then headed south on the interstate and stopped at Roswell Air Force Base near Macon, Georgia and toured their Aviation Museum on our way to Florida. There are four hangers each with a theme. Hanger One was the favorite. It is devoted to WW II with each area featuring a specific plane on the ground with workers nearby doing the service work in preparation for the next mission.
My husband Meakin is a licensed pilot and has been for some 40 odd years. We don’t fly much anymore, but I can count on the fact that if an airplane flies over head he’s going to look up.
We’ve also been traveling on the virtual highway, searching for our ancestors. My heart skipped a beat when I first saw the words Plymouth, Massachusetts associated with both of our relatives. Amazingly, it turns out, we are both descendants of The Mayflower.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, also one of Alden’s descendants, wrote the famous verse, The Courtship of Miles Standish. According to the legend, John Alden started out to win the hand of Priscilla for his friend Miles Standish, but instead won her hand for himself. Priscilla’s famous quote being, “Why don’t you speak for yourself, John?” They married in 1623.
Meakin is a descendant of John Howland, also one of the founders of Plymouth Colony. You may have read about the man who was accidently thrown overboard the Mayflower in your history books. It was John Howland. One night he grew restless below and stepped onto the decks above for some air. Howland was from the English inland and quickly discovered that in a gale the decks of a ship were no place for a landsman. Suddenly when the Mayflower lurched forward, Howland tumbled into the sea. Fortunately he managed to grab a topsail halyard from the ship that was floating in the water and was hauled back aboard safely.
Both the Alden Home and the Howland Home are museums, so now we’re planning a trip to New England in the fall to tour Plymouth and then on to Maine to stuff ourselves with lobster until it starts to come out of our ears.
Whether we’re traveling the car or on the virtual highway, often we’re tired when dinner time rolls around. That’s when I pull out a simple and easy comfort food recipe, such as this BLT salad. Fortunately I’ve been able to find “Ugly” heirloom tomatoes in our market for several months now so that’s what I used. The “Ugly” heirlooms are full of flavor and with one taste you’ll swear it’s already the middle of summer. If you can find apple wood smoked bacon, such as Nueskie’s from Wisconsin, so much the better.
BLT salad with buttermilk dressing and gorgonzola cheese
Adapted from The Beach House Cookbook by Barbara Scott-Goodman
¼ pound thick, apple wood smoked bacon, cut in large dice
2 cups mixed salad greens
2 cups torn romaine lettuce leaves
2 large ripe tomatoes, preferably heirloom, diced
3-4 tablespoons crumbled gorgonzola cheese
½ cup good mayonnaise, such as Hellman’s
1 tablespoon champagne vinegar
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
¼ cup low-fat buttermilk
2 tablespoons chopped red onion
2 tablespoons each of chopped fresh basil and Italian flat-leaf parsley
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Sauté bacon until crisp and drain well on a paper towel to cool. While the bacon is cooking, whisk the mayonnaise, vinegar, lemon juice together in a small bowl. Add the buttermilk, onion, basil and parsley. Whisk again and season to taste with salt and pepper.
Toss the greens together with the dressing in a large salad bowl. Taste again for seasonings. Arrange greens on a platter and top with tomatoes, bacon and crumbled gorgonzola. Serves 4 – 6.