Sunday, March 30, 2014

A FOREVER FEAST, ON EAGLES


Yes, we are continuing to have winter weather with snow flurries in 
the forecast.  When large objects light on power poles, it is
quickly determined not to be part of the electrical grid,
although a showy specimen.


Not really bald of course, it is merely white-headed.
Bald eagles are part of the sea eagle group, feeding mainly on fish.  
Here is one far from the sea but close to a river which would have
a lot of ice on it this time of the year.  I can only guess what it
is finding for food.


In solitude, atop giant stone set on a hill in a snow-covered prairie pasture,
 rests a powerful Haliaeetus leucocephalus .. immovable ...powerful.
One of my favorite scriptures points to the eagle... I recite it often.

..those who hope in the Lord
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint.
Isaiah 40:31  NIV



Saturday, March 29, 2014

APRICOT ZINGS


I love when I come across a recipe in one of my many cookbooks with my note on the side:
"Made for Church potluck on March 16, 1986.  Delicious!"
I wish I had kept it up with all the recipes I tried.
I offered to bake squares for a ministry fund-raiser and this is one
 I chose because they taste great and are easily transportable.


The bottom crust is very tasty!


A layer of apricot goodness bakes into a firm but soft filling.


Sprinkle crumble over top and bake.


You can have these in the oven in and out of the oven in no time.
They keep well and are excellent for freezing.


APRICOT ZINGS

1 cup graham cracker crumbs
1 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup brown sugar, packed
½ cup flaked coconut
½ tsp. salt
½ cup butter, melted

Combine graham crumbs, flour, brown sugar, coconut and salt in a bowl.
Add melted butter and mix.  Reserve 1 cup.
Pack remaining mixture into parchment-lined 9 x 9-inch pan.
Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 10 minutes.

1 cup dried apricots

In small saucepan, cover apricots with water.
Simmer for 15 minutes.  Drain and chop.

2 eggs 
1 cup brown sugar, scant
¼ tsp. almond extract
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
½ tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. salt

Beat eggs until frothy.  Add sugar and almond flavoring; mix.  Stir in flour, 
baking powder and salt.  Add apricots and stir again.
Spread over bottom layer.  Sprinkle with reserved crumbs. 
Return to oven and continue to bake for 30 minutes.
Cool and cut into squares.
Yield: 25 small squares

Friday, March 28, 2014

BERRY CREAM PIE


Bags of hand-picked Saskatoon berries in my freezer are there
inviting the summer-taste-in-winter.
Recently my daughter told me about a blueberry cream pie her family enjoyed.
So I made one using Saskatoon berries .. a few days later I made another one ...
and several days later I had a request for yet another one.
What more can I say!


Everything can be prepared the day before which is very convenient.


Prepare the berry filling and refrigerate until needed.


Prepare the cream filling and refrigerate overnight if necessary.


Assemble and chill until serving.


The second time around I forgot the sequence .. so the pudding is on the bottom
and the berries are on top.


I think it looks mouth-watering delicious this way!
 But I will try to remember to put the berries in first because the pie
is easier to serve with cream filling covering the berries.
Either way, it's a win win combination!


BERRY CREAM PIE

Prepare pastry for 9 or 10 -inch pie pan.
Line pan and pre-bake until lightly golden.

½ cup sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch or Clearjel
1 tablespoon flour
¼ tsp. salt
2½ cups milk
3 egg yolks
1 tsp.. vanilla

In medium saucepan, stir together sugar, cornstarch, flour and salt.  Whisk
1 cup milk and egg yolks together with a fork; strain through sieve into saucepan.
Add remaining milk; cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until mixture thickens
 and boils.  Boil and stir 1 minute longer. Stir in vanilla.
Place plastic wrap directly onto surface of cooked mixture to prevent skin
from forming. Chill until cold.

½ cup sugar
1½ tablespoons cornstarch or Clearjel
½ cup water
½ tsp. lemon juice
2½ cups fresh or frozen Saskatoon berries or blueberries

In a saucepan, blend together sugar and cornstarch.  Add water and lemon juice.
Stir to combine; add berries and cook until thickened, stirring constantly.  Cool.

Whip 1 cup whipping cream and ¼ cup powdered sugar together until
stiff but not grainy.

When ready to assemble pie, spoon berry mixture into cool pie shell.
Top with chilled cream pudding, smoothing top.
Spread with whipped cream, adding a swirled border if desired.

Yield: 6 to 8 servings





Sunday, March 23, 2014

A FOREVER FEAST, FIRST DAY OF SPRING 2014


The first day of Spring  .... no daffodils here.
Just heaps of moisture for the farmers as we know it will melt promptly.
I'm smiling as I try to look on the bright side of more snow.


As the Fall months leave, I am not keen about the coming cold weather.
Now that I can look back on the long winter, I must say that I 
quite enjoyed the slow pace.  I stayed very close to home and
a warm fire.  Cozy and warm is so conducive to reading and catching
up on projects and the never ending task of reorganizing.


Winter was not terribly harsh.  Alberta had many periods of 
bare brown earth with temperatures way above freezing.
Cycles of cold and mild went on and on.
But Winter was long!


Winter is when the bald eagle can be seen hanging out on the leafless trees.
I simply cannot shorten the space between myself and it
before he sees and sails away.


Spring is coming .. and I am excited.
Longer days ... the sun rapidly moving north ...
 I am glad for the Alaskans.


I splurged on a bouquet of beauty and loveliness ... just because.....
...   roses beckon the heart to happiness and joy and smiles.
 God's imprint glows on every petal.

Walk in love as Christ also hath loved us,
and hath given himself for us
an offering and a sacrifice to God
for a sweet smelling savour.
  Ephesians 5:2

Unto you therefore which believe,
he is precious ..
1 Peter 2: 7  KJV
















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Saturday, March 22, 2014

BUTTERSCOTCH BARS


You can't go wrong with a decadent butterscotch filling sandwiched
inside a crunchy oat crumb base and topping!
So easy to make and so good with a cup of tea or coffee!
The credit goes to my friend Ruth Ann who served them at
a wedding celebration where I remember making a mental
note to ask for the recipe.
To my regret, it has taken me years to finally make it happen.


A parchment-lined pan works best as the filling sticks to the sides
even if it is sprayed.  Pour the filling onto the base as soon as the
butterscotch chips are melted and the remaining ingredients added.
The filling will spread easier if it is hot and even so, will pick up
some of the crumbs no matter how careful you work.


Allow to cool before slicing into bars.


Excellent for freezing.


BUTTERSCOTCH BARS

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1½ cups quick oats
1 cup brown sugar, lightly packed
3/4 tsp. baking soda
¼ tsp. salt
3/4 cup butter or margarine, softened

Stir together flour, oats, brown sugar, baking soda and salt.  Add butter  
and mix until crumbly.  Press ½ crumb mixture firmly into a parchment-lined 
10 x 15 -inch jelly roll pan.  Reserve remaining crumbs.

1 3/4 cups butterscotch chips
1 can sweetened condensed milk
2 tbsp. butter
½ tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped 

In a heavy saucepan, heat together butterscotch chips, sweetened condensed milk,
and butter over low heat, stirring constantly until melted and smooth,
Remove from heat; stir in salt, vanilla and nuts.
Pour evenly over prepared crust.  Sprinkle with reserved crumbs; pat down lightly.
Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 25 minutes or until golden brown.
Yield: 35 bars approx. 2 x 2 inches