Saturday, July 11

Flea Market Saturday #4: Summertime Treats

The Flint Hills and its unique tall grasses that cover a huge part of east central Kansas look much the same as they did to pioneers 150+ years ago on their way to California, Oregon, and Santa Fe in present-day New Mexico.

Few travelers whizzing through the Flint Hills today on I-70 have any idea people actually live in those gently rolling hills that go on forever, but Jemm of the Flint Hills is one of them.

Jemm and her family just moved into the stone house built by her husband's great-great-grandparents on their ranch in 1892. Grass fires are all too common in the Flint Hills, hence the house was built partly to survive them and partly because in 1892, limestone was plentiful and trees were not.

My own great-grandparents settled near the Flint Hills because the area looked like the part of England where both were born.

Another set of ancestors came to America from
Somersetshire, home of Chez Sophie.

Sophie's first attempt at making strawberry jam
brought back memories of my mother doing the same
with strawberries from our garden in Kansas.

Doesn't Sophie's jam look simply yummy in the jars she's
been collecting all winter from flea markets and boot sales?

She used the simple recipe from the back of the Jam sugar. (Note: Jam sugar is an extra-fine sugar available in the UK for preserving that contains citric acid and pectin. The American equivalent would be regular sugar and fruit pectin.)

Continuing the berry theme - though not intentionally - Blueberry Heart takes us to Worcestershire and some of the shops in Worcester's High Street. Her favorite was New England Country Store.

Call it my quirky sense of humor, but I find it ironic that a shop only a few miles from the Bard's birthplace sells items from the American Colonies. (On the other hand, a McDonald's at the Tower of London is just plain tacky....)

Worcester, of course, is the home of Worcester Cathedral, founded in 680 - yes, six hundred and eighty - and described as "possibly the most interesting of all England’s cathedrals, especially architecturally".

I won't say it's the most interesting, but definitely worth a visit.

Pixie Dust at Faerie Nuff has a wonderful recipe for that uniquely summer treat, homemade Custard Ice Cream. The good news is it can be made in an ice cream freezer, but doesn't have to be. Your fridge's freezer will work just fine.

My taste buds are in overdrive imagining several creamy scoops of this topped by dollops of Sophie's strawberry jam, or some of those heart-y blueberries!

From England, we pop down to southern Spain's Mediterranean coast to meet one of its most delightful and adorable residents, the Lovely Lola.

With the help of Nora (her mostly useless PA), Lola dishes out divine advice on a variety of subjects at The Johnson Diaries: Life On The Edge. Her photo should tell you that in spite of the address, she adores all things French!

Remind me to send the divine Lola a huge basket of doggie treats for pointing me to Lucy Fishwife's Life Happens Between Books, the musings and tribulations of a London West End bookseller married for 17 years to...surprise...Mr. Fishwife, who doesn't "see the point of fiction" and likes to record and replay televised rugby matches for the same reason book lovers re-read a favorite book. Or maybe only a Brit at heart can fully appreciate Lucy's take on Life...

Last, but by no means least...
"Un Couer en Provence", French for "A Heart In Provence".

Exactly where my heart landed on seeing Laeriss's gorgeous site several weeks ago - and then I lost the link! Perhaps that was a blessing, because between then and now she added a wonderful Olfactory Tour of Grignan, a village whose streets are filled with the scent of lavender. Elsewhere, she tells how to make lavender sugar to flavor one's tea.

If Tuscany is more to your liking, she takes us there twice: Holiday in Tuscany #1 and Holiday in Tuscany #2.

Merci, Laeriss!
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Anonymous said...

Lovely ... thanks for sharing.

JamaGenie said...

Those sunflowers look very familiar! Until I visited your blog awhile ago, I had no idea they existed in the UK. So thank you!

LondonGirl said...

Which English hills did they have in mind, do you know?

JamaGenie said...

East of Penrith, toward Durham. Foothills of the Pennines?

Dr. Bill (William L.) Smith said...

Thank you for sharing.
Positive mention of the Flint Hills always gets my attention! Thanks!
So happy it brought me to your site. Hope you and your readers visit regularly.

Our 22 county Flint Hills Tourism Coalition, Inc. promotes visits to the Kansas Flint Hills – the website is:

Best wishes!
Dr. Bill ;-)
Personal Blog:

Nora Johnson said...

Dear Jama!

I'm sooo thrilled and FLATTERED to be mentioned on your blog!! You are clearly a very perceptive and discerning lady to have recognized & appreciated all my wonderful talents!!!*wink*

Hope you're having a wonderful weekend too,


PS I'll be back in touch shortly!! (One of my little secrets - that is, as long as those dreadful North Koreans don't hack into my computer first and steal them!!)

Duchess of Tea said...

Hello Jama darling, you are such a wonderful person, to take time and write and introduce us to other talented bloggers. I am proud of you, thanks for sharing all of this with us. I hope you are having a wonderful weekend.
Duchess xx

JamaGenie said...

Dr. Bill - I've been reading your blogs tonight and following the links from it and the second link you included here. Thank you for reminding me how much there is to see (and do) in the Flint Hills. I may have to do a post devoted entirely to its wonders.

Nora - I'll be over to check out the situation with those nasty NKs shortly! Until then, hold them off as best you can! (Where are George, Johnny and Brad when you need them!) ;D

Dearest Duchess, it's a wonder I get anything written at all now that Rose Tea Cottage has become my home away from home!

Marie Reed said...

Hooray for blog adventures! I'll go check al of this jolly linkage out... well.. I should be packing!

JamaGenie said...

Pack, Marie! There's a rumor your mum has a ton of Beef-a-Roni waiting for you. lol!

Melissa said...

Your blog just brings such visual peace to the eyes and spirit.

I love it.

Happy Sunday.


Duchess of Tea said...

Darling, first it was wordless posts and now photoless too. Long time no post, are you alright Luv?
Duchess xx

JamaGenie said...

All is well, your Grace. I was working on several posts at the same time and couldn't make up my mind which to post first. Only moments ago, a slip of the mouse decided for me! The others will follow shortly.

How sweet of you to be concerned!
Jama xx

Duchess of Tea said...

Good to hear, and I see what you mean about working on posts. Well off I go to read them,
Duchess xx