Vanilla Bean–Blueberry Ice Cream with Lemon Shortbread Crumble
I didn’t make it up to Maine this summer. Maybe that means summer didn’t happen, because Maine is the state of summer for New Englanders. It’s the capital of summer for those who’ve grown tired of The Cape, a reward for those who can will themselves to drive past that scary and confusing state called New Hampshire. It’s a place where the clearness of the water makes up for its frigid temps. For out-of-towners like me, it seems to exist only for vacation (it’s called Vacationland, after all); it’s a place to go, not a place to stay—weekend Xanax, essentially. Maine has all the chill.
Besides “chill,” when I think about Maine, I think about my mom, not because she’s chill—I’m a product of a chill-less family—but because I spent many summer days there when I was a child, with just her. She worked weekends and nights and so I had a gift many other kids didn’t (or, they did, because we were misplaced shit-eaters in a town where no one seemed to have to work): a summer vacation adventure partner. Tuesdays were usually our big day, and we wouldn’t make it past Ogunquit—a day is only so long—but we had the best time driving with the windows open, baking and snoring on the beach, absolutely ruling at paddle ball, and eating cliché Maine blueberry confections, most frequently a slice of blueberry pie at The Goldenrod in York. That’s why cool vanilla ice cream melting into a dark purple sea of molten blueberries is my madeleine, and my favorite taste of summer.