Bring a medium saucepan of water to a boil, remove from the heat, and add:
2 1/2 ounces cellophane, vermicelli, or rice stick noodles, broken in half...
Here's to summer. Maybe you went fishing. Maybe you swam in a large body of water or a swimming pool, or maybe you just stood in a stream letting cold water rush over your feet.
Maybe you rented a cabin in the woods or a rundown beach house. Maybe you backpacked or day hiked or wandered aimlessly around your neighborhood.
Maybe you grew a garden--beans, tomatoes, corn, squash--or maybe you just had a plant or two. Either way, you watched something grow to fruition. Maybe you even got to eat some of it.
I hope you read a book. At least one. I don't even care if it was a real book or a digital one, because I know folks are doing that these days. I hope it was good and that it made you feel human in that way that only books can.
I hope you had a chance to sit outside with friends long after dark, maybe around a fire or maybe not, soaking up the warm summer evening. I hope there was cold beer or good wine or sparkling cider if that's your thing.
I hope you ate your fill of tomatoes (they're still kicking, so it's not too late), sweet corn, peaches, and berries. Even if you can find them year-round at the supermarket, they won't be the same until next year.
More than anything, I hope summer has been good to you, and that you've taken full advantage. I hope you were able to push aside the busy for a moment or two and really take it all in--how wonderful and astonishing and colorful and delicious life can be--because it's those small wonders that make you whole.
Grind in a food processor:
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 cup loosely packed basil leaves
6 cups cubed watermelon
Blend the sugar into the watermelon juice, then run it through a fine sieve to remove any large or grainy particles. Add:
Juice and zest of one lemon (about 3 tablespoons juice)
Pour the mixture into an 8 or 9-inch square pan and freeze. Every 30 minutes, take the granita out of the freezer and scrape it with a fork. The mixture should be completely frozen after a few hours. Serve in glasses with lightly sweetened whipped cream.