Lindsay Stewart, who is the pastry chef at Natirar (90 Acres) in Somerville, NJ, was featured in a recent posting for her fabulous milk chocolate caramel tart. I met her mother Linda at the Belvidere Farmer's Market last year and she told me about her daughter so that is how we met. When I promised to invite them both for lunch for a viewing of the new baker's kitchen, Lindsay asked what she could bring. My first thought was a tub of the lard rendered from the restaurant's farm but then I came up with an additional inspiration. I said that if she would bring the salumi, which I adored at the restaurant, we would make baguettes and a special dessert. Lindsay also brought a selection of cheeses, nuts, preserved olives, and her famous cheese crackers. We all feasted and chatted for well-over an hour. Linda gave us great tips ranging from getting rid of stink bugs to where to get the best peaches in the area. For dessert, Woody and I made a génoise from the upcoming Baking BIble, filled with mascerated strawberries and raspberries and adorned with local redcaps (aka thimble or wine berries) that we picked the day before. We used the juices from the mascerated berries to moisten the cake the night before which also softened the berries a bit so the redcaps added a firmer fresh touch. We made a special accompaniment: whipped cream, using Devon Double Cream, lightened with homemade crème fraîche and a tiny touch of sugar. As a special treat, we opened a bottle of blueberry wine from the nearby Four Sister's Winery. The photo on the label is of Mia, the owner Matty's granddaughter.
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