4 Southern Summer Supper Recipes

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Run! The zucchinis are coming! They are closely followed by overflowing bushels of corn. Blackberries flank them in a summer race to the table. Though we are all being relentlessly pursued, this “curse of plenty” is welcome. These local treasures, and their seasonal deliciousness, are long awaited.

Since late April when I saw blackberry flowers, each with five snow-white petals, while climbing up the side of a Dickson County hill, I have been hoping to see the resulting fruits present themselves. They are as beautiful as clusters of black pearls. And the corn! Rows of yellow and white gems bursting with flavor and wrapped in pale silk. And, though zucchini becomes thick-skinned and as big as a baseball bat if left in the garden too long, it begins as a chartreuse and light gold trumpet blossom that bruises when touched.

Wild blackberry vines invite us to reach through the thorns and risk the rattlers like Eve reaching for that apple. However, the thornless variety also grows very well in Tennessee summers, ripening between June and October. Check your local pick-your-own options. Corn is easy to pick and miraculous in its speedy and great growth. It’s said that corn, under the right conditions, grows so fast that a person can actually hear it rustle up to the sky. If you see a random woman standing in a cornfield, it might be me putting this theory to the test. And we all know about zucchini. We don’t need to plant it. It shows up all on its own. Though I have never purchased one zucchini plant or seed, I have found it in my mailbox, wrapped like an orphan on my porch and propped up against my car at the YMCA.

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Blackberry Cake with Blackberry Icing

Photo by Jeffrey S. Otto

I have seen many heirloom recipes for blackberry jam cake, but few for just plain, fresh-from-the-bush blackberries. The frosting in this Blackberry Cake recipe is such a pretty color. Purple is just so darned regal. Though we have enjoyed many cake recipes on these pages over the years, I hope this one becomes a new favorite at your castle.

This collection of original Tennessee supper recipes is meant to offer a few new and delicious ways to use some of our most reliable summer favorites. Find even more hot eats and cool treats for summer here.

It’s time to run across the finish line with our great Tennessee produce. Just don’t trip over a zucchini. Dig in, ya’ll!

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