the fleeting summer and a recipe: balsamic roasted summer vegetables

I have the post-vacation blues this week. I expected to be in a bit of a funk for a day or so, but it’s sticking around a bit longer than it should.

Is this what I get for having such a restful, carefree vacation?

We spent last week in Rosemary Beach, a gorgeous beach town in Florida’s panhandle. Some good friends of ours, with children around the same ages of Madeline and Oliver, came with us on the trip and shared the house with us. The house was huge,  three stories, and only a three minute walk to the beach and a two minute walk to the pool.  I brought my laptop but I let it sit, powered off and unopened, and eventually it became piled high with random articles of clothing. I finished one book and read another two books during the more relaxed moments of the trip. It rained many of the days, but that just gave me more time to read. I made sandcastles with my son, and I watched my daughter play on her boogie board until her shoulders were browned. I spent hours over cups of coffee – or glasses of wine or mojitos or sangria – deep in conversation with my dear friend. I didn’t exercise once, unless you count climbing the three sets of wooden stairs up and over the sand dunes each day.

It was a good week.

It’s hard to come back to my daily routine and responsibilities after such a blissful week away. I anticipated perhaps a day of getting adjusted, but not this. I don’t think it’s just post-vacation melancholy. It feels like something more.

I can feel summer dissipating.

The heat is still here. It’s not going anywhere until October, or maybe late September if we’re really lucky. It’s the sense of summer freedom that is disappearing, slipping away like a handful of sugary, white beach sand through my fingers. The fact that school starts in less than 3 weeks is a harsh reminder that the end of summer is near. Back-to-school supplies are in the stores and the meet-the-teacher date has been set. I had to order my daughter’s new school uniforms this week.

I love fall, I really do. It’s my favorite season. But I haven’t had enough summer yet.

I need more time.

Yield: Serves 6-8.

Balsamic Roasted Summer Vegetables


2 medium zucchini, sliced 1/4 inch thick
2-3 large yellow crookneck squash, sliced 1/4 inch thick
1 pint cherry tomatoes
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Kosher salt
Fresh ground black pepper


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Toss vegetables with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Spread out on even layer on a large baking sheet and sprinkle vegetables with a generous pinch or 2 of salt and 2-3 grinds of fresh ground black pepper. Roast for 30-40 minutes, stirring at least once during roasting.

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12 Responses to “lobster macaroni and cheese”

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention I used 2 of your fantastic mac-n-cheese recipes to make this lobster-filled version. Thanks 4 inspiring me! --

  2. Monet — May 10, 2010 @ 4:28 pm

    What a scrumptious dish. This made me start to drool…could anything be better than lobster AND macaroni and cheese? Your blog is beautiful, by the way, and I enjoy your thoughtful posts. Thank you for sharing!

  3. Liren — May 10, 2010 @ 6:22 pm

    What I love about this dish is that it combines the “special occasion” qualities associates with lobster, with the everyday comfort of mac n cheese! And the Chardonnay pairing is great! What a wonderful meal for Mother’s Day weekend!!

    BTW, did your kids just totally love it? I know mine would!

  4. merrygourmet
    merrygourmet — May 10, 2010 @ 6:37 pm

    Monet – Thanks for the compliments. I’m so glad you’re reading!

    Liren – Sadly, my son spit it out and said it was “YUCK” – but my daughter liked it. It’s always one or the other. This was definitely my Mother’s Day meal, and I actually liked making it for myself. The kitchen is very therapeutic for me.

  5. SMITH BITES — May 10, 2010 @ 7:24 pm

    I have both recipes marked right here on my table – just looked too decadent to pass up!

  6. Macaroni Mama — May 10, 2010 @ 8:14 pm

    Now this looks great, considering how you grew up on Macaroni. Seriously, you MUST present this meal for us.

  7. Roti n Rice — May 11, 2010 @ 6:18 pm

    This is high end macaroni and cheese. Looks delicious!

  8. Tiffany — May 14, 2010 @ 3:30 pm

    I can’t wait to try this recipe, lobster and cheese are my two favorite foods!

  9. I love mac & cheese! This looks amazing! I heard Ina’s recipe for this is a great one too.

  10. C Frary — December 20, 2011 @ 2:42 pm

    This is an amazing recipe. I made it last year for Christmas Eve to RAVE reviews. I’m making it again this year and everyone is really excited. It is very rich, but well worth it.

    • Merry-Jennifer

      Merry-Jennifer replied: — December 20th, 2011 @ 6:41 pm

      Wonderful! I’m so glad to hear that your guests — and you! — enjoyed it.

  11. Pingback: Recipes: Seafood Cuisine Meal Plan

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