I have a confession to make. Until moments ago, I had no idea what Labor Day was really all about, other than it being the weekend before school starts, the symbolic end of summer, a traditional occasion for grilling out, and the last day where it is appropriate to wear white. Does that fashion rule even still apply?
Oh, I could have made some guesses, based on the holiday’s name; perhaps something having to do with working people or labor unions. But it took a visit to Wikipedia to learn the history and reason behind the holiday we’re celebrating today.
The worst part is that I’d never given much consideration to my ignorance about this particular holiday until my son asked me to explain it.
Me: Daddy has off from work tomorrow!
Little Man: Oh yeah? Why?
Me: Because it’s Labor Day.
Little Man: What’s Labor Day?
Me: Uhhhhhh…a day when Daddy doesn’t have to work?
I feel ashamed. I am clearly one of the millions of Americans who are clueless about so much of our history. I can hear my Dad in my ear warning, Those who do not know their history are doomed to repeat it.
I’m certain that I must have learned the history of Labor Day sometime back in my elementary school days. But I think that sometimes we’re just not prepared to appreciate that sort of history without the background knowledge or experience to latch onto. It’s not until we’ve experienced a bit of the world that these things start to really make sense. I think, as adults, we need to take the initiative to reeducate ourselves a bit, reread those classic novels, remind ourselves of the significance of things we’ve come to take for granted…
Do you know the history of Labor Day?
Let me tell you about a holiday I do know something about… International Bacon Day! It takes place every year on the Saturday before Labor Day. Did you celebrate? I certainly did. If you missed it, it’s not too late to pay your respects to bacon. (Bacon won’t mind that you’re celebrating two days late.)
If you’re in need of a suitable celebratory bacon recipe, I’ve got just the thing. My corn and bacon fritters pair delicious, crisp bacon with irresistibly sweet end-of-summer corn in a rich batter to form little fry cakes; slightly crisp on the outside, tender in the middle. Make them large and serve them as a side dish to broiled salmon or make them small, topped with bits of smoked salmon and creme fraiche for a fantastic little hors d’oeuvres!
Cheers to all of the working people who help to make our country great and cheers to bacon!
Corn and Bacon Fritters
- 1 1/4 cup flour
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 – 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 cup milk
- 1 egg
- Corn from 4 cobs, cooked (about 3 cups)
- 8 slices of bacon, cooked and chopped
- 3 green onions, chopped
- Vegetable oil
Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and cayenne pepper in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, lightly beat together the milk and the egg. Gradually whisk the milk and egg mixture into the dry ingredients to form a batter. Stir in the corn, bacon, and green onions. Heat a thin layer of vegetable oil in a pan over medium heat. Pour or spoon batter into the oil, as large or as small as desired. Cook for about 1-2 minutes on each side. Drain in a single layer on a paper towel to remove excess oil.