Saturday, March 28, 2020

A Beautiful World

 I have such dear friends, and they've shared their sunsets with me over the last year. I  receive random messages....Hey Deb, did you see the magical sky tonight.....Hey Deb, are you watching the Full Moon rise...Hey Deb, I am in AZ and thought you would like to see our sunset tonight...Hey Deb, did you see the beautiful sky this morning...they share photos of them on their boats and hiking....Hey Deb, I think it is blue hour.  

Half of these photos were taken by me, and the rest were shared with me over the last year. I am a photo hoarder on my phone, so I went through all the photos and put together a collage. I am using these collages on my desktop computer as my screen saver.  
My morning routine {each spring} is to enjoy my morning cup of coffee while reading about the local Peregrine Falcon (Duck Hawk) that nests on a tall building in our downtown area. A nesting box was provided for the falcons once it was discovered they were making downtown their nesting site over the years.  It is equipped with "technology" so we can watch the mating process and then see the eggs hatch. Photo credits:  Paul Diaz and Matt Perry

Praying you all are well, and peace and health abounds very soon.

“andrĂ  tutto bene"

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Parmesan Onion Board

A Parmesan Onion Board is the perfect addition to your best soup recipes. It's got the bold flavors of onion, poppy seeds, and Parmesan cheese, and let's face it, that goes with just about anything. This was comforting my friends, and I hope you are having a good week. 

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 large onion, sliced very thin (you will carmelize them)
  • 1 pound frozen bread dough, thawed
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 teaspoon poppy seeds
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 10- x 15-inch rimmed baking sheet.

In a medium skillet over medium heat, melt butter; cook onion 8 to 10 minutes or until
tender and golden. On a lightly floured surface, with a rolling pin, roll out dough to a 
10- x 15-inch rectangle. With your fingertips, gently push dough up to the edges, forming
a rim. If dough is sticky, dust it and your hands lightly with flour.

Brush dough with egg then spread onion evenly over the top. Sprinkle with poppy seeds
and Parmesan cheese.

Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until golden. Remove to a cutting board, let cool slightly, then
cut into squares and serve.

Friday, March 20, 2020

Bermuda High ..Key West party for two

In the spirit of trying to stay positive, lift each other up! Joe thinks very much like me, so when I said let's have a Key West dinner, he was all for it on this "balmy" 70 degree day that did not last long at all. I love anything mango, and Joe grilled some shrimp and jerk chicken. 

Several years ago, I hosted a Key West party for our family and it will be embedded in my memory always. The menu consisted of several dishes from a cookbook I picked up in Key West. The menu included:
Key Lime Pie Martinis
Skip and Go Naked Drinks (Susan Branch)
Coconut Shrimp
Tuna Cakes
Candied Bacon Pineapple Wraps
Pork Havana Key West Style
Oven Roasted Mojo Chicken
Dinosaur BBQ Honey Corn Bread
Yellow rice
Black beans
Sunshine's Key Lime Pie
Cuban Coffee

I used a recipe from one of the establishments in Key West for the Key Lime Pie martinis and they  taste just like key lime pie in a glass.
Key Lime Pie Martini
Graham cracker crumbs, for rimming the glass
2 lime wedges
6 tablespoons (3 ounces) vanilla flavored vodka
1/4 cup (2 ounces) key lime liqueur (recommended: Ke Ke Beach Key Lime Cream Liqueur)
2 tablespoons pineapple juice
2 tablespoons heavy cream
Ice cubes

Pour the graham cracker crumbs in a shallow dish. Rub a lime wedge around the edge of a martini glass and roll the edge in the graham cracker crumbs. Chill the glass for 30 minutes or until ready to serve.

Combine the vanilla vodka, key lime liqueur, pineapple juice, and cream in a shaker. Fill the shaker half full with ice and shake until well blended. Pour into prepared martini glass, garnish with a lime wedge and serve immediately.
What’s so special about Key West?
The weather, architecture, food, music and flowers blooming in the full moon light. Key West lies 150 miles south of Miami and 90 miles north of Cuba. This little spit of land, four miles long by two miles wide, hosts weather that is consistently beautiful thanks to its subtropical climate, with temperatures of seventy-five to eighty degrees year round.
Praying you are well and will stay well. 

Monday, March 16, 2020

Second Week of March 2020

As you all know, March has been an interesting month so far. There is so much beauty around us, and I keep a daily journal but rarely blog about it. Yesterday, I set a festive table for upcoming St. Patty's which we will celebrate simply at home, the backyard birds continue to entertain us with their beauty....I took photos with the color "yellow" for a photography group that I belong to....the health food store that I shop at has beautiful hanging baskets in their sunny windows (they bloom all year long), the "third quarter" moon was staring me in the face on Sunday when I grabbed the newspaper from the front porch, and Xavier and I made peanut butter cookies Saturday evening (and danced). On Sunday afternoon, we went to a watchable wildlife paradise with our hiking club. We are lucky to have the Utica Marsh Wildlife Management Area. A "garden guy" shares his poetry with us monthly. This is the poetry that was in my inbox on Sunday, March 15. Stay healthy and happy friends. 


Do not deny
the sunlight 
that is joy,

The chance to unfold your leaves
and breathe 
into this world.

That which moves through us
without effort
is a gift
from the creator,

To re-member 
and share 
its fruit 



Friday, March 13, 2020

Scandinavian Spice Cookies

Keep calm and bake cookies :-) I picked up this recipe at our local organic store a while back, it was in a Frontier Spices brochure. I already had the cookie stamp, and love when a cookie recipe makes 12 cookies or less. This recipe made 10 cookies. For my palate, this will be my favorite cookie in 2020. I don't think any cookie can top this. I love the taste of Cardamon and Almond together. 

Scandinavian Spice Cookies
1 teaspoon cardamom powder 
1 dash salt 
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup all-purpose unbleached flour
1/2 cup butter, softened

1. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, cardamom, and salt. In another bowl, cream the butter and sugar. Stir in the almond extract.

2. Stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and mix well. Form into a ball and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes or more.

3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Form the dough into one-inch balls and roll in sugar.

4. Place on ungreased cookie sheet. Flatten with a cookie stamp (or the back of a fork if you don’t have a stamp). Bake until lightly browned, about 15 minutes.

Variation Substitute 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon powder and 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg powder for the cardamom, and replace the almond extract with 1 teaspoon vanilla extract.

Praying you and your families stay safe and well through these new trying times.


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