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Downton script meeting, pre water bottle gate*

The end of August marks the unofficial end of Summer, and the last long weekend before school and work brings up back inside. Sadly, this year served up more cool and rainy days than many would have preferred for our summer.  The UK experienced the chilliest August bank holiday on record this week, and fingers are crossed in North America for one last burst of sunshine as we celebrate Labour Day.

This year’s harsh winter delayed the start of the growing season, but our local markets are overflowing with wonderful fresh produce.  My own little garden flourished once it got going, but it is the fruit I really look forward to this time of year.  All those lovely tree fruits for wonderful summer desserts.

This week’s dish is peach and blueberry galette.  No need for pie plates or tart forms. This is a simple recipe with a no fuss crust, and easy to find fillings, to finish your off your Labour Day meal.

Labour Day Signals Change of Seasons

White Dresses 3sisters Labour Day dates back to 1882 and I like to believe the story that Americans were inspired by Toronto’s Labour Festival.

The no whites after labour day rule is another signal that the seasons are changing.  Traditionally white clothing (linens) was worn in warmer temperatures and when the wealthy packed up their summer homes at the end of August, they also put away the summer whites until next May.

Downton Dish

The final count down to Season 5 in the UK is on.  Downton  only have to wait a few more weeks for Season 5, (ETA Sept. 14 on ITV), but North America will have to wait until Jan. 4 for the release on PBS.  Keep an eye out for our favorite actors at the Emmys at the end of this month.  In the meantime, here is the latest dish on Downton:

Abbey Cooks Entertain

Sadly, garden party season will soon be over, so don’t miss out on the chance to host your own party.  I have a whole section of my book dedicated to having tea outside.

With 220 traditional Downton era recipes with a modern twist, this is a great book to create some simple or complex dishes for your Mary or Anna.   This 432 page ebook sells for $7.95. Book sales help offset my costs in food, equipment and time to keep bringing you new dishes each week.

While the book is available on Amazon, you can only get a signed copy here on my site.

If you don’t have an eReader I would suggest the PDF version which allows you to print recipes as you go, if you wish. Buy one for yourself, gift to another.  All you have to do is email the download link to your loved ones.

Peach & Blueberry Galette


As you might expect “galette” is a french term which typically means a free form tart made with a flaky pastry crust.  I like using my pizza pan since it is round to begin with and the holes help prevent a soggy crust. This crust is light and scrumptious.  I am slowly getting used the idea that butter is not evil when enjoyed in moderation.

Peaches and blueberries are a wonderful combination and come in season around the same time. This recipe is Lord D approved.


  • 1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp. granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small cubes
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 3 tbsp. milk
  • 2 cups peaches, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • 2 cups blueberries
  • 1/4 cup light muscovado sugar or light brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp. unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 2 tbsp. demerara or dark brown sugar


While Mrs. Patmore and Daisy could have only dreamt of the KitchenAid standing mixer, feel free to use yours to make the crust (using a paddle attachment) . It is a labour saving device.

  1. Combine 1 1/2 cups of flour, granulated sugar, and salt in a large bowl.  Add the butter to the flour working quickly with your fingers or use a pastry blender/2 forks to incorporate until mixture comes together. 
  2. Beat the egg yolk and milk in a small bowl, then add to the flour mixture. Work the mixture together until you create a soft dough.
  3. Turn the dough out onto a sheet of plastic wrap, press it into a flat disk, wrap it in the plastic. Place in your refrigerator to rest for at least 15 minutes.
  4. Preheat your oven to 350°F. Line a pizza pan with parchment paper. The shape is right and with the holes in the pan you avoid the soggy crust.
  5. In a medium bowl, toss the peaches and blueberries with the muscovado sugar, flour, cinnamon, and salt.
  6. Lightly flour your clean work area and roll out the dough to a 12- to 13-inch round.
  7. Transfer the dough to the pizza pan.  Arrange the fruit in the center of the dough, leaving about at least one inch of space from the edge clear.
  8. Fold the outside edge of the dough over the fruit, pleating to where you need to.  Brush the crust with the egg.  Sprinkle the demerara sugar evenly over the dough and fruit.
  9. Bake until the crust turns a light brown and the filling bubbles, about 50 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes then cut into wedges.
  10. Serve warm.