Sunday, June 30, 2013

A FOREVER FEAST, O CANADA


Tomorrow is Canada Day, 2013
Another opportunity to celebrate our land of Canada ..
.. taking note of the blessings that come our way
in this country we call home.


Day by day new scenes appear across the canvas of
the skies ... sunshine beaming toward the rain that recently passed  
... creating the arc of promise on this grand evening.


.... surprises ....
.. fragile and exquisite mushrooms cropping up in unexpected places ..


... small bodies of water ...  home to the splendid plumage of
the yellow-headed blackbird ...


... color and beauty ... fragrant and lovely ...


... peace ...  tranquility  ...  freedom ...


Father in heaven, thank you for the privilege of living in
Canada!

All our opportunities, abilities, and resources
come from God.
They are given to us to hold in
sacred trust for Him.
Cooperating with God will permit us
to generously pass on to others some
of the many blessings
from His rich storehouse.
... Living in God's Graces ..

The righteous man walks in his integrity;
his children are blessed after him.
Proverbs 20:7 NKJV


Friday, June 28, 2013

TIM HORTONS DISASTER DOUGHNUT




I had a very special reason to stop by Tim Hortons today.
My interest was piqued by an advertisement and I wanted
to support a cause.


I was on a quest to see this special rose-shaped doughnut.


I was on a quest not only to see ... but also to purchase one.
I ended up getting several!
This is not an ordinary doughnut .. it is a disaster doughnut ..
but far too pretty to refer to it as a disaster.


How perfectly brilliant of TIM HORTONS to come up with this novel idea!
All the money raised from the sales of the rose-shaped disaster doughnut will
be donated to the Red Cross flood relief efforts in southern Alberta.


The doughnut is vanilla dipped, has a Venetian cream center and is
topped with pink, red and white strawberry bark.
Very tasty indeed!


After inspecting the underside, I have an idea how they put
together this unique rose shape .. but that is for another day.
At present I will simply enjoy a doughnut created
especially for the flood causes.


Sorry, the doughnut is available only at Alberta locations.
I will not be buying it at this very pretty spot in Ithaca, NY.
Just had to share the picture though.
Thank you Tim Hortons for giving us this sweet opportunity
to share in disaster aid!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

STRAWBERRY RHUBARB COBBLER


I'm lagging behind with my rhubarb baking since I moved my plant
this Spring and had to rely on friends to share with me.
Even though it came later, that first bite of mellow strawberry- rhubarb
cobbler was delicious! With ice cream of course!


It is the perfect mix of sweet strawberries and tart rhubarb
covered with a wonderful crunchy, buttery topping.


I tossed some Saskatoon berries into one half of the mixture.
It was very good but in this case I am a purist and preferred the
strawberry rhubarb combination.  So now I know!

STRAWBERRY RHUBARB COBBLER

4 cups cut-up fresh rhubarb (½ inch pieces)
1 box (10 oz.) frozen strawberries*
(about 1½ cups including juice)
3/4 cup sugar
2 Tbsp. instant cooking tapioca

Mix rhubarb, strawberries, sugar and tapioca together thoroughly.
Let stand for 10 minutes.
Pour fruit mixture into well buttered 9 x 13-inch glass baking dish.
Place into preheated 350 degree oven until bubbly, about 25 to 30 minutes
before adding topping.

1 1/3 cups flour
1 tsp. baking powder
3 Tbsp. granulated sugar
3 Tbsp. brown sugar
¼ tsp. ground cinnamon
½ cup melted butter
½ tsp. vanilla

Blend flour, baking powder, sugars and cinnamon.  Add melted butter and
vanilla; stir together with a fork until dough clumps together.
Cover hot fruit mixture evenly with the crumble topping.
Continue baking for 25 to 30 minutes or until topping is golden brown.
Delicious served warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Yield: 8 to 10 servings

* if using fresh strawberries, chop hulled berries to make 1½ cups.
Sprinkle with 2 Tbsp. sugar; stir and allow to stand for
10 minutes until juice is formed.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

ASIAN CABBAGE SALAD


Dressed up with some crunchy ingredients and a flavorful
Oriental dressing, this Cole slaw mix turns into an outstanding salad.
Thanks to my daughters for sharing this recipe.


For the crunch ... curly noodles and sliced almonds are tossed
with butter and seasonings.


Stir and cook until toasted and lightly browned.
(For later use, store in airtight container)


On this day I planned to make an individual salad rather than
a large size of several servings.
Begin with a serving of shredded cabbage and carrots.


Add desired amount of crunchy topping.


Drizzle with Oriental dressing and enjoy!

ASIAN CABBAGE SALAD

1 tbsp. butter or margarine
1 pkg. (3 oz.) Oriental style noodles with seasoning packet
(such as ramen noodles)
½ cup sliced almonds

Melt butter in non-stick frying pan; add seasoning packet from soup mix.
Break noodles; add together with almonds.
Cook and stir until mixture is toasted and lightly browned.

Oriental Dressing

½ cup sugar
2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
2 Tbsp. white vinegar
2 Tbsp. soy sauce
3/4 cup oil

In a blender, combine all ingredients except oil.  Cover and process
until blended.  While processing, gradually add oil in a steady stream.
Blend until thick.  Store in refrigerator.
(Mixture will separate; whisk before using)

3 to 4 cups finely shredded Nappa cabbage
1 cup shredded carrots
Toasted noodle and almond mix
Oriental dressing

Toss cabbage, carrots and noodle mix in serving bowl.
Add desired amount of dressing and mix.
Serve immediately.
Yield: 6 to 8 servings


Friday, June 21, 2013

THE BUILDING OF A STORM


Today is not a recipe post but rather a series of pictures that
document the building of the storm that has devastated many communities
in Southern Alberta.
The view from my home on the farm was a lovely cluster of clouds
that hung in the heavens in ever changing formations.


Late in the afternoon of Wednesday, June 19, the skies held a promise
of rain ... I had no inkling of what was to come.


Looking towards Lethbridge, the clouds became more dense and hung
low ... ominous perhaps but beautiful.


It was exciting to see that rain was falling somewhere to the northwest.
I hoped our area would be in line for the blessing of moisture as well.


The storm appeared to be coming ever closer ... the clouds
very near to the ground.


At this point there was no thought of fear .. only awe.


This is a small section of a magnificent scene playing out on the landscape.


A shot to the west where the elements were churning and rumbling.


Bit by bit the storm was building and coming closer.



Farther south the sun shone .. the air was calm and the view exhilarating.


And then the grand contrast of colors and shapes melded into one
umbrella-like canopy and the world turned dark.
I hurried home .. left my camera in the car and dashed for shelter.
Finally it was here .. all the explosive energy unleashed .. thunder and lightening ..
driving rain and fierce wind.
Tiny carrot seeds I planted hours earlier sloshed around in pools of water
gathering on every level space.
Rain barrels filled and ran over.  Objects not attached tossed to and fro.
A sudden charge of wind and rain obliterated the view to the outside
and my thoughts ran to a tornado.
Thankfully it was momentary but the rain continued in sheets and
one inch turned to two ... and maybe more.
Today several communities are under a state of emergency forcing thousands
of people to higher ground.
We will hear of bravery and the resilience of the human spirit.
We are sad and feel for those who are suffering great losses.
We feel inadequate in the face of calamity.
God, I look to You and ask for your comfort to those in pain ..
 give insight to the ones making decisions surrounding this devastation ..
 grant strength and safety to those who are using their skills to repair and reconstruct.

To view pictures of the flooding ..Google, flooding in southern Alberta.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

A FOREVER FEAST, TRACY ARM FJORD


Tracy Arm Fjord ... if I were to choose the 'awe' moment
on the cruise to Alaska ... this would be the one!
The captain had announced a very early sighting .. 5:00 am .. for the
best view.  Tired as we were from the previous late night,
rising was not optional.
 I was taken aback ... almost shocked ... at the sight the greeted me on deck.
A wall of mountain rising up out of the water near the ship!
The site of one of God's magnificent creations!


This will be a short post as I was rather spent after the flight and drive home.
Going back to the beginning of this unforgettable experience, we left
home on June 6, passing by our favorite Chief Mountain close to the Montana border.


We actually had a fun crossing with a congenial customs agent
on our way to the airport for a flight to Washington.


After a very pleasant evening and overnight in Seattle, a shuttle
took us to meet the Rhapsody of the Seas.
The ship was huge!!
But only half as huge as the Solstice docked alongside us.


Whenever I mention we ... I'm talking about my two eldest granddaughters
who were with me on this wonderful holiday.
I love those two dearly ... and if possible even more now that I have spent
undivided time in their company.
It was so much fun ... no generation gap here!
We ate and laughed and enjoyed every moment ... well
except for the day that many guests including Kyrie and I were ill
as our 'ark' navigated rough waters.
I thought back to Noah and wondered how he managed without the
luxury of room service.


A close up view of the glacier at Tracy Arm Fjord ... love those
icy blue colors and the sheer mammoth size of the frozen chunks that seem to
be stacked up in rugged sheets.

O Lord my God, how great thou art!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

SUNNY CITRUS POUNDCAKE


I am leaving for a few days and will not have access to a computer
so I decided to repost a favorite recipe from 2011.
Some of you may not have seen this before ... and it may
just remind others to give it a try.


I was skeptical of a cake that needs no icing until I tasted this one.
It is plain and simple and over-the-top delicious.
Serve with coffee for an afternoon treat or as a dessert with fresh fruit.


I like to assemble all the ingredients so the mixing can begin.


Creaming the butter and sugar until light is an important step.
After the eggs are added, the mixture is beaten until thick and creamy.


Looking luscious already.


The final additions do not need vigorous beating; only blending.


Expect a crack .. this is typical.


Cooling before sampling.


3 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda

Blend dry ingredients; set aside.

1 cup butter, softened
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs
1 tbsp. grated orange zest
2 tsp. lemon zest
3/4 cup plain yogurt
1/3 cup orange juice

In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar until well blended.
Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition until smooth.
Continue to beat on high speed until thick and creamy, about 5 minutes.
Add zests.
Add dry ingredients alternately with yogurt and orange juice, beating on low
until blended. 
Spread batter into a greased and floured, 10-inch Bundt or 10-inch tube pan.
Bake in preheated 350° oven for 65 to 70 minutes or
until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.
Cool for 10 minutes in pan, then remove to wire rack.

OPTIONAL GLAZE

1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup lemon juice

Heat sugar and lemon juice together, stirring to dissolve sugar.
Poke holes with fork in surface of warm cake; brush glaze over cake,
letting it soak in.
Cool cake completely before slicing.
Freezing: excellent

Sunday, June 2, 2013

A FOREVER FEAST, GARDENING


Each Spring I look forward to my annual visit to Country Blooms.
My senses are captivated by the smells and beauty of
rows and rows of plants and spectacular hanging baskets.


How beautiful and perfect is this exquisite creation!


These delicate flowers skip happily along their downward spiral.


Purity and simplicity came to  mind in this eye catching spray.


Lush and colorful ... the wonder of creation ...
a gardener with an eye for color and the gift of creativity.


Looking down on Garden Path 5 reminds me of various paths that
are ours to choose.
I was blessed to be a guest at a program ... 2 brothers and 3 sisters ..
parents that have chosen the homeschooling path.
What a blessing to listen to the singing and recitation by the children
as they poured forth their gifts of music and learning to the praise
and glory of God.
I can only imagine how many lives these happy children will
bless in their lifetimes. 
Parents you are to be commended .. I honor your dedication.

Train a child in the way he should go,
and when he is old he will not turn from it.
Proverbs 22:6


The perfect sign to end a blessed day, a complete rainbow
arched high above the horizon.
Thank you God for all your blessings.