Monday, December 31, 2012

'Should Old Acquaintance Be Forgot?'...Happy New Year!

Harry: What does this song mean? My whole life, I don't know what this song means. I mean, 'Should old acquaintance be forgot'? 
 Does that mean that we should forget old acquaintances, or does it mean if we happened to forget them, we should remember them, which is not possible because we already forgot?

Sally: Well, maybe it just means that we should remember that we forgot them or something. Anyway, it's about old friends.


A little history about Auld Lang Syne...from Wikipedia
"Auld Lang Syne" (Scots pronunciation: [ˈɔːl(d) lɑŋˈsəin]: note "s" rather than "z")[1] is a Scots poem written by Robert Burns in 1788[2][3] and set to the tune of a traditional folk song (Roud # 6294). It is well known in many countries, especially in the English-speaking world; its traditional use being to celebrate the start of the New Year at the stroke of midnight. By extension, it is also sung at funerals, graduations and as a farewell or ending to other occasions. The international Boy Scout youth movement, in many countries, uses it as a close to jamborees and other functions.
The song's Scots title may be translated into English literally as "old long since", or more idiomatically, "long long ago",[4] "days gone by" or "old times". Consequently "For auld lang syne", as it appears in the first line of the chorus, might be loosely translated as "for (the sake of) old times".
 

 ...Scene from my favorite holiday movie....When Harry Met Sally-Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal (1989)...at the stroke of midnight!
 (I loved all the 80's and 90's love stories with Meg Ryan w/happy endings...don't we all love 'happy endings?)

Well my dear friends, here we are at the 'wind down' of 2012...we survived the 'foretold' Mayan earth destruction, and we will survive many other disasters...just having faith in God and one-another!

While some of you friends are already celebrating New Year's Day with loved ones and friends...we are still counting down the clock for midnight. As for me, getting adjusted to seeing the way I see; for right now...'it is what it is!'...just have to wait out the months of seeing better. Just was not in the 'spirit' of celebrating...although I also had the invitation of going to dinner at my son-in-law's restaurant; instead, I am happy to stay with my little grandson, and watch 'When Harry Met Sally' for the umpteenth time!

You have all been so kind to me with your heartwarming and encouraging lovely comments...I just feel like a 'schmuck' now for not commenting on your blogs...which I plan to do so very soon!

Our holiday season this year has not been one of the best, my ex-husband (Lora's dad) has been in the hospital since Christmas day and will be coming home after New Year's ...and he is still not well, and will be needing 'round the clock' nurse care for a couple weeks...so, it's never a dull moment, but then; I'm still hopeful that all will be well, and things will start out positive and happy in the New Year. 
 

Wishing you a Happy New Year...in health, prosperity, and good fortune, in the coming year!
Love,
Elisabeth

 
  

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Pumpkin Cranberry Bundt Cake...Merry Christmas!

I've been so immersed with my own health and family situation, that I have felt so out of touch for the last month!
Funny...how you feel out of 'touch' when you can't see properly...it's almost like not hearing, or functioning right...but I was determined not to let me down. As long as I can see well with my good eye, and will have to wait patiently to get to other eye sight corrected in a few months...I should be counting my 'blessings'!
You all have been such an inspiration for me, and I am 'forever' grateful for that! Thank you, from the bottom of my heart!
I made this easy Pumpkin Cranberry Bundt Cake, knowing I had all the ingredients on hand, including the fresh cranberries. I did not...and cannot slice it, since it's for Christmas...but I do have the source which I got the recipe from!

Pumpkin Cranberry Bundt Cake
An all-in-one holiday bundt cake filled with pumpkin, cranberries and almonds. Topped with cream cheese icing.
Yield: 1 9-inch bundt cake
Ingredients
For the cake:
  • 2 cups (240 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon ginger
  • Pinch salt
  • ¾ cup (170 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup (215 grams) brown sugar
  • ½ cup (100 grams) sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1¼ cup (338 grams) canned pumpkin puree
  • ¼ cup (85 ml) molasses
  • 1 cup (100 grams) fresh cranberries, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup (110 grams) almonds or pecans, chopped
For the icing:
  • 4 ounces (113 grams) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • ½ cup (110 grams) powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3-4 tablespoons milk
Instructions
To make the icing:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour a 9-inch bundt pan.
  2. In a bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and salt.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, or in a bowl with a hand mixer, beat together the butter, brown sugar and sugar together until pale in color and creamy. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing after each, followed by the vanilla. Add the pumpkin puree and molasses and mix until combined. Add the dry ingredients and mix only until the streaks of flour are gone. Gently stir in the cranberries and pecans.
  4. Spread the batter into the prepared bundt pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean and the top bounces back when touched, about 1 hour.
  5. Let cool in the pan 10 minutes, then invert onto a wire rack or plate to cool completely.
To make the icing:
  1. Beat the cream cheese in a stand mixer or with a hand mixer until smooth. Add the powdered sugar and vanilla extract. Add enough milk to get a spreadable consistency.
  2. Spread the icing on top of the bundt cake, letting it drip down the sides. Let the icing set before serving.
  3. Store leftovers in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Notes
Recipe adapted from Baking from My Home to Yours.


Merry Christmas around the world





Xmas around the world
Christmas around the world
Afrikaner (Afrikaans) ~ “Geseënde Kersfees”
Argentine ~ “Felices Pascuas”
Bohemian ~ Vesele Vanoce”
Brazilian ~ “Boas Festas”
Chinese (Cantonese) ~ “Saint Dan Fai Lok”
Danish ~ “Glædelig Jul”
Dutch ~ “Vrolijk Kerstfeest”
English ~ “Merry Christmas”
Filipino ~ “Maligayang Pasko”
Finnish ~ “Hyvaa Joulua”
French ~ Joyeux Noël
German ~ “Froehliche Weihnachten”
Greek ~ “Kala Christouyenna”
Hawaiian ~ Mele Kalikimaka
Hebrew ~ “Mo’adim Lesimkha”
Hungarian~ " Boldog Karácsonyt"
Icelandic ~ “Gledileg Jol”
Indonesian ~ “Selamat Hari Natal”
Irish ~ “Nollaig Shona Dhuit”
Italian ~ “Buone Feste Natalizie”Natale italiano
Japanese ~ Kurisumasu Omedeto”
Korean ~ “Sung Tan Chuk Ha”
Lithuanian ~ “Linksmu Kaledu”
Malay ~ “Selamat Hari Natal”
Maori ~ “Meri Kirihimete”
Norwegian ~ “God Jul”Jul i Norge
Romanian ~ “Craciun Fericit”
Peruvian ~ “Felices Fiestas”
Portugese ~ “Boas Festas”
Slovakian ~ “Vesele Vianoce”
Spanish ~ Feliz NavidadCyber Navidad
Swedish ~ “God Jul”Jul i Sverige
Welsh ~ “Nadolig Llawen"


...May all your Christmas dreams...and wishes come true!
Hugs,




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Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Kahlua-Banana-Nutella Bundt Cake

After announcing that I'm back on my last post; which was nearly two weeks ago...a lot has happened in my personal life...although, one thing that is really positive is that my eye is healing very nicely after the Retinal surgery, and I'm starting to see better, but it will take at least six months for a full recovery of my eye sight.

Do you ever feel so overwhelmed with things happening around you...especially in your family during the holidays?

I had an urgent and important visit from my younger sister from out of town, staying for nearly a week, just focusing on her issues/problems...forgetting about my own (one of the reasons for not posting)...then, came the horrific tragic news about about the Sandy Hook Elementary School with a gunman on a 'killing spree'...which totally shocked, and paralyzed all of us in the nation, and especially in Connecticut where it took place. I am numb, and feel horrible, sad, angry, can't stop crying for the little 'angels' (I have 2 grandchildren their age) and adults whose lives have been taken so tragically...leaving their family 'heartbroken' forever!

So horrifying, and gut wrenching, that I can't begin to describe my feelings. I could go into a long theory of 'gun control' and 'mental illness' which is already a call for HELP~ I could ask, like a lot of people have asked?

"Why does God allow innocent young children to die in such horror?" "Where was God when this horrific massacre took place?" God established humanity with 'FREE will'...we can choose to do right, or wrong, evil...or good; but there are consequences to our choices. God did intervene...otherwise there would have been more death

We blame firearms, God, and our government, but never blame ourselves as a whole. We cannot ignore mental illness, and need to focus more and getting the help for our children early in life when this kind of problem is detected.

Although some bloggers have posted a 'Silent Monday'...we cannot be silent on any day, when it comes to 'gun control' in our society which has gone out of control in our country. We should have a 'moment of silence' in our own way, or together to honor the 'little angels' and adults that have gone on to their final resting place...so, so sad; our hearts and spirits are broken, and Christmas will never be the same!

 I totally re-created this wonderful bundt cake just from 'tweaking' my banana bread recipe with 1/4 cup of Kahlua liquor; you can substitute 1/4 cup strong coffee in place of the Kahlua. Swirl in 1/2 cup Nutella in the batter, but don't mix it in entirely. Also, be sure to add 1 teaspoon baking powder, and 1 teaspoon baking soda.

 I wanted to link this delicious bundt cake to #BundtAMonth for December to Lora's blog...so sorry; I just don't have the time or energy to do this right now...also posting my recipe. If you would like this recipe I created, do let me know, and I will post it later!

Thank you for all your sweet and caring comments, I am so ashamed for not even visiting my dear friends' blogs, not even my own daughter's @Cake Duchess!

I love you all, dear friends...please forgive me for my silence and 'aloofness.'




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Friday, December 7, 2012

'Time in a Bottle'...I'm back!

My treasures from the ocean...including a bottom of a 1965 beer bottle; now, a 'sea glass' after 47yrs finding its way out from the ocean!The gorgeous cobalt blue dish with it's stand, is a 'thrift find' for $2.99.


Time in a Bottle~ Jim Croce 
If I could save time in a bottle
The first thing that I'd like to do
Is to save every day
Till Eternity passes away
Just to spend them with you
If I could make days last forever
If words could make wishes come true
I'd save every day like a treasure and then,
Again, I would spend them with you...



Hi Everyone,
I'm back...not looking so great; but my eye surgery was a success...actually a bit 'scary'. Did not think that Retinal eye surgery would be so complicated...but if you have the faith and confidence, and know you have the best doctor, and surgical team, then half the 'battle' is done! Thank you so much for your kind and encouraging words, your thoughts and your prayers!

I've been resting at my daughter's house, and just came home yesterday...but now, I'm going back there again. Cannot bend down, or lift anything heavy for two weeks, at least. My eye patch is off, and only have to wear it at night when I sleep (not to rub my eye)

I uploaded one of my most favorite song from 1973, by Jim Croce...Time in a Bottle. A couple weeks ago, my son found this beautiful huge piece of sea glass on the beach, and gave it to me...it was actually a beer bottle, from 1965, as you can see the back of it...from Geo. Ballantine & Sons, a famous Brewing company, that made Ballantine Ale. They were a huge beer brewing company that started out in the late eighteen hundred, through the sixties, until some other companies took over their name. The brewery has been shut down around that time, or even earlier! Well, that's the story on that!

Wouldn't it be nice to save time in a bottle?...yes, we can do that by cherishing every moment in our life, and spending time with our loved ones and friends! Doing 'good' for others, and seeing the 'best' and not the worst. If you could do that, you will have saved all the time, and can look back, knowing you have no regrets. Time heals all wounds...especially physical ones, and I will be on my way to recovery real soon!

I missed you, all...have a wonderful weekend! xoxo

My 'sea glass' collection...took at least 10yrs to collect these precious, perfectly polished sea glass that the ocean washes out. It's very rare to find a few, here-and-there, scattered on the beach. Just think; in order for these glass pieces to get these shapes...it takes several decades from broken bottles dropped into the ocean, to get these shapes! Beautiful jewelry can be designed by these gorgeous sea glass; I just don't have enough...or maybe!
As the saying goes..."one man's garbage, is another man's treasure". Apparently, these bottles have been dropped into the ocean off ships, storms and waves have been battering them to break up and form into shapes! You can  check out this wonderful website to actually view and purchase sea glass jewelry...absolutely amazing~
Out of the Blue Sea Glass Jewelry 
Photo, courtesy of... Out of the Blue Sea Glass Jewelry
 

What Is Sea Glass Or Beach Glass?


Sea glass or beach glass comes from our lost broken glass that found its way to the sea where it is transformed into frosted gem like treasures by the natural tumbling action of the tides. Both terms sea glass or beach glass can refer to glass that has emerged from the sea and beach glass refers to glass that has emerged from a body of fresh water such as one of the Great Lakes. In Puerto Rico sea glass is sometimes called crystal de mar or vidrio de mar. Sea glass is often poetically referred to as "Mermaids Tears" and washes up on beaches all over the world. In writing you will sometimes see seaglass, or beachglass. I love the oneness of "seaglass" after all those years in the ocean it has become something beyond man made glass. It is as if the glass has blended with the sea and the two are now inseparable. The way you can hold a seashell up to your ear and hear the ocean I find that you can feel the power of the sea when you hold a piece of sea glass in your hand.

Orcas Island Sea Glass
Amazon.com Sea Glass Jewelry 

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Saturday, December 1, 2012

Nutella and Banana Panini

This may seem like a strange post, but this morning I was craving something sweet, ans why not  make something 'comforting' fun, and sinfully delicious without a lot of calories. I love Nutella, just like everyone else, but hardly ever use it to make a dessert... even though I have the jar sitting in my cupboard, next to the jar of peanut butter. I also had a whole Challah bread in my freezer, I had it sitting there for over one month. Such a perfect grilled panini with Nutella, and the banana pairing!
I must warn you, this Nutella Panini is not elegant...there's no other way to present it to make it look fancy; it's 'what you see is what you get' kind of a droolworthy awesome grilled sweet sandwich, made exclusively in a Panini Grill that is only for grilled sandwiches. I only ate one small portion, and wrapped up the rest to take over to my little grandson as a great snack when he came out of kindergarten. My daughter also enjoyed it as well!
Notice the perfect grill marks?... can't get better than that!

I'm sure, there must be an actual recipe out there, by I got my inspiration from one of my other favorite sandwich, which is the peanut butter banana sandwich, which I'm sure will taste as yummy, as a grilled panini.


 Nutella and Banana Panini
 recipe by; Elisabeth

Nutella (chocolate hazelnut spread
1 or 2 ripe bananas, sliced
4 (1-inch thick) slices of Challah bread
or white sandwich bread






Spread 1 tablespoon of Nutella on one side of each slice of bread. If you're using a small, or med. banana, you can fill the entire bread slice with the banana slices.Top with the remaining bread slice, spread side down.










Preheat your panini grill, on med. high. This is a 'thrift find' panini grill, which I purchased about a year ago, for $9.99...a real bargain, and it works great!












 Place the panini (sandwich) on the hot grid, close the lid down and grill for about 5 or 6 minutes.














 When you see the grill marks appear, your sandwich is done.








While it's still warm, with a serrated knife, cut into half, or thirds...just watch it disappear... Yumm













 Some pre-Christmas visit at Macy's with my grandchildren!

 Last Saturday, at Macy's at City Place, in West Palm Beach...letter to Santa Claus!
Beautiful Christmas tree, at Macy's
I just had to snap this photo...so cool, so Christmasy...this car parked in front of Publix supermarket, after we left Macy's and stopped to buy a few items, at the supermarket. Imagine, the person cramming the Christmas tree into the car...also leaving the windows down and totally leaving down, and all open.
When we came out of the supermarket after 30 minutes, the car with the Christmas tree inside was still parked...isn't this a cute car?...a brand new FIAT! (not mine, of course)...wouldn't mind to own this little beauty:)








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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Paprikás Krumpli {Paprika Potatoes}

As the saying goes..."the eyes are windows to the soul"...well, let me tell you; I've been doing a lot of 'soul searching' in the last few days, after the holidays! A lot has happened since. I finally decided to get an eye exam, knowing that I need a new prescription for my eyes, and new glasses (I wear contact lenses, as well) Have had problems with both lately, my right eye not feeling just comfortable, blurriness, and sharp pain at times.

Just from my eye exam visit this Monday, (which took 2hrs) I was directed to visit a Retinal Eye Care place the next day for my right eye. Well, that was this morning...after 3hrs of thorough test, eye drops, yellow dye that they inject into your arm to see more...I found out that I damaged, badly scratched retina...swelling, as well. I will be needing an eye surgery, which will take place next Monday and hopefully I will regain my eye sight normally. Over the last few days, I have lost 75% of my vision in the right eye.

The eye specialist asked me if I had a trauma...perhaps hitting my eye; and I suddenly realized and remember my car accident and how I got smacked in the eye from the air bag...my eyeglasses knocked off and the right side digging into my eye...two years, and I have done nothing...even at that time I didn't bother to get my injured eye checked...so now, thinking I need new glasses, this is the result.

Please, do not neglect your eyes, and do go for regular eye exams yearly, if your wear glasses especially!  I waited 2 years with an injured eye that did heal from the physical bruises, but internal eye 'trauma' such as mine, the doctor told me, could have caused blindness...and neglect sure has not helped...so please say a 'little pray' for me for a successful outcome of the Retinal Surgery to correct this problem to regain my sight back...thank you, and I don't mean to 'dump' on you with my problem; but I just wanted to share this with you!
 Nothing like making a simple comforting dish from your childhood, and serving it on a beautiful cobalt blue plate, and a special tea towel from your Hungarian grandmother that she 'needle pointed' herself...some 40+yrs ago. I am truly blessed to have this, and proudly showing it off!
Paprikás Krumpli {Paprika Potatoes}
Recipe by; Elisabeth

4 medium potatoes; of your choice
1 med. onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, sliced
half link of smoked sausage, sliced...I used Polish Kielbasa
1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp. Hungarian sweet, or hot paprika
salt and pepper to taste

Cut potatoes in half, with skin on, and boil in salted water, just until it is still partially cooked. You can take the casing off from the smoked kielbasa, and slice thin.

 Saute onion, and garlic in the olive oil. till translucent, and golden. Add the paprika.












Saute onion, and garlic, and the paprika...add some chicken or vegetable broth, to keep from burning on the bottom of the pan.












 I used Progresso chicken broth, but you can use a vegetable broth as well. I used probably about 1 cup, of the 32 ozs, of the broth, and added the potatoes.











Add enough of the broth so that you can simmer the potatoes...at this time, you can add the sausage, or just stay with the potatoes, and let it get thick, and saucey.










At this time, you can add the sliced Kielbasa, and just cook for a few minutes to incorporate.












Add more broth as needed, but do not add more oil. You can always drizzle some extra oil at the end, to make it look glistening, and tasty, as well. Total cooking time is about probably 30 minutes...not counting the pre-cooking for the potatoes!








So, there you have it...the best tasting comfort potato dish, you would enjoy, as a brunch, lunch, side dish, or even for dinner with nice crusty bread, and a side salad!


















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Friday, November 23, 2012

French's Green Bean Casserole

Thanksgiving has dwindled down, and Black Friday shoppers are out and about getting some real bargains, I am finally catching up with a new post, and do not feel too guilty for not being able to post a Thanksgiving post, as I have last year; but do feel bad for not wishing you all a Happy Thanksgiving at least the day before...but then, that would have had to be another post which I wasn't prepared for!

Last year we spent Thanksgiving with family and friends...a large gathering of at least 20 people, but this year was just our own family. Couldn't help thinking how the Super Storm Sandy survivors that lost everything spend their holiday...being thankful to at least have their lives spared. I also feel bad for some of my elderly neighbors living alone knowing that they are spending Thanksgiving all alone, but I already know that this is how they choose to do so...they want to be alone and often complain about every little thing that bothers them about neighbors. So how could you be neighborly to anti-social people when they refuse a nice gesture from others? (not like they haven't been invited; they want to be left alone...sad, but true)
Do you recognize this all American Green Bean Casserole? ...of course you do. I thought it was popular since the sixties, which I remembered, but after researching it, turns out that it was discovered in 1955 by the Campbell's Soup Company in their test kitchen making it with Cream of Mushroom Soup, and French's ...French Fried Onion Rings, which I only buy just for this casserole, although you can make an awesome crunchy crusted onion chicken with it, as well!
I remember way back when I first had this casserole in the sixties, it was made with canned green beans, then later years with frozen beans, but I of course have been making it with fresh cooked green beans, and also added about 1 Tbsp. of extra virgin olive oil to the soup when mixing it with the milk and soy sauce, and folding the some of the French Fried Onions into it. For some reason, I was always disappointed in the sauce when baking it, and it would have a dry and 'chalky' look, but not any more, it has a beautiful consistency, and it even improves on the flavor.

 I adapted the recipe from the 6 oz. (170g.) new plastic container of the French's French Fried Onions, using fresh cooked green beans, instead of canned or frozen.

French's Green Bean Casserole
slightly adapted; by Elisabeth

1 (10 3/4 oz.) can Campbell's Cream of Mushroom Soup
1/2 cup milk (you can use soy milk)
1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon soy sauce
salt and pepper to taste
1 plastic bag (already filled) fresh green beans; about 1 lb.
washed, cleaned, and cooked
1 1/3 cup French's French Fried Onions

In a large bowl, mix soup, milk, olive oil, soy sauce, salt and pepper, and fold in the the french fried onions, and the green beans. Have a 1-1/2 qt. oven proof casserole ready to spoon mixture in. Bake for 25 minutes, in a preheated 350 degrees F. oven. Remove from oven, and top with remaining onions...bake for an additional 5 minutes till onions get crispy and golden.

So, check out my fabulous Herb Stuffed 14 lb. Organic, (Brined) Roast Turkey, purchased at Whole Foods Market; the best and the most moist, flavorful turkey...ever! Also made Giblet Gravy, a Smooth Turkey Gravy, simple Herb Stuffing, Mashed Potatoes made with Sour Cream! My daughter made a Sweet Potato Casserole, Cranberry Sauce, Apple Cranberry Pie, and Pumpkin Pie...and we also had a Brussel Sprouts/Grapes vegetable...it was a beautiful, sunny, breezy day; we enjoyed our late lunch/early dinner outside, in a comfortable 73 degrees F. temperature in S. Florida! A lot to be thankful for, and counting our Blessings!




 No frills, no fancy platter...fresh out of the oven, after 5 1/2 hrs. partially tented with aluminum foil for the first 4hrs, baked in a 325 degree F. oven. Rubbed with Hungarian sweet paprika, salt, pepper, and canola oil...(as soon as the little red auto thermometer pops up; its ready) I folded the wings under, to prevent from burning the tip...(just a little habit of mine for chicken, as well)

Also added 1 cup chicken broth in the bottom of the disposable bake pan, and started to baste it after 3hrs, every 30 minutes.






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Monday, November 19, 2012

Fennel, Orange, and Onion Salad

With Thanksgiving around the corner, you'll want to eat lighter the few days before, to save some calories for the big Feast! One of my all-time favorite fall, and winter salad is the fennel and orange, paired with red onions, capers, on a bed of your favorite salad, or salad leaves; such as Romaine, or for that matter a simple Iceburg which I had leftover from using shredded lettuce to accompany last weeks tacos (sorry, no photo)
Fennel is so refreshing, so crispy and if you like licorice, you will love the flavor of this delightful fennel bulb, trimmed, and sliced into 1/2 inch pieces...and don't throw out the fronds; they make an excellent decoration...kind of reminds you of dill fronds, but not as strong...they are perfectly eatable, as well!
Back in 2000, when I first started my WeightWatchers diet (lost 37 lbs.) is, when I discovered this wonderful salad...with -0- points if you don't use a dressing with extra virgin olive oil...actually even with just 1 teaspoon of the oil, and a white wine vinegar dressing, I still think it's -0- points a serving...so go ahead, and enjoy this beautiful salad...and by the way, if you're wondering how to cut beautiful segments of oranges; watch this video that will show you how easy to segment an orange.

Fennel, Orange, and Onion Salad
recipe ; by Elisabeth... Weight Watchers inspired

1 small fennel bulb, trimmed, and cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 naval orange, peeled, and sliced into segments
1 red onion, halved, and sliced thin
1 Tbsp small capers, drained and rinsed
sea salt, and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoon white wine, or rice vinegar
small amount of leftover orange juice from the segments
Your favorite salad leaves, or bed of salad
Chopped fennel fronds

In a medium bowl, mix together the fennel, the red onion, the capers, and carefully mix in the cleaned orange segments. Toss with the oil, and vinegar. and serve on a bed of lettuce leaves, or your favorite salad mix...salt and pepper to taste, and top with fennel fronds. Serves 2-4... very tasty, mild, and refreshing.


Linking to: Cast Party Wednesday Link Party, @ Lady Behind the Curtain









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Thursday, November 15, 2012

{My Best}...Apple Brown Betty


Betty or Brown Betty - A Betty consist of a fruit, most commonly apples, baked between layers of buttered crumbs. Betties are an English pudding dessert closely related to the French apple charlotte. Betty was a popular baked pudding made during colonial times in America.
According to The Oxford Companion To Food, by Alan Davison:
The name seems to have first appeared in print in 1864, when an article in the Yale Literary Magazine listed it (in quotation marks, implying that it was not then a fully established term) with tea, coffee, and pies as things to be given up during 'training'. That author gave brown in lower case and Betty in upper case: and, in default of evidence to the contrary, it seems best to go along with the view that Betty is here a proper name.
According to The American History Cookbook, by Mark H. Zanger:
Brown Betty (1890) - This recipe was part of the winning essay for the $500 American Public health Association Lomb prize on practical, Sanitary, and Economic Cooking Adapted to persons of Moderate and Small Means, which became a book of the same title by Mrs. Mary Hinman Abel. It was part of a series of menus to feed a family on thirteen cents a day. Mrs. Abel may have carried the recipe into use the the New England Kitchen, an experimental Boston restaurant aimed at "improving" the food choices of the poor. check the link; What's Cooking in America/History
I've often wondered where did the name 'Apple Brown Betty' come from?...I've always known that this simple and quick comforting dessert has a great American history, and I was right...although I have not done any research on it, I just assumed that it has to do with perhaps the same name as 'Betty Crocker'...which is a fictitious name that was given to the famous American cookbook back in the early 1940's!

This dessert, among the 'Cobbler' the 'Crisps', the 'Crumble', and the 'Buckle' is an unmistakeably origins in Colonial American cooking.
Although the earliest date recorded in print, was 1864, the first recipe appeared in 1890. America should be proud to have such an early culinary history, which were developed by our early settlers from England...so how about that?

Linking to: Thursday Favorite Things Blog Hop @ Katherines Corner 
                 Full Plate Thursday @ Miz Helen's Country Cottage


As the Thanksgiving holiday approaches, I start to pull out my treasured Thanksgiving and Christmas issues of Bon Appetit, Gourmet, and Cooking Light. Over the years I saved a huge stack of these favorites, but have drastically narrowed them down.

I have only about 10 various holiday issues now. I have a Bon Appetit November 1983 issue which I treasure so much because of the unusual Roast Turkey called, 'Roast Turkey with Cornmeal' consists of spreading cornmeal and butter under the skin to crisp the skin...also has a 'Wild Mushroom Dressing'...'Brussel Sprouts with Mustard Seeds'...'Native American Cranberry Sauce' that consists of pure maple syrup, ground ginger, and lots of fresh cranberries. I have made this entire recipe, back then, and had success with it, but have not made it since....perhaps, now is the time to make it again!
I'll be totally honest with you, my friends and (readers)...this is the best Apple Betty I have made in a long time...some people 'jazz' it up with oats, or lots of streusel, but I'll tell you; it's not needed. You just make sure you have 5...apples. They could be sweet; as well, or mix the tart and the sweet. I used Rome apples!

The secret in this amazing Apple Betty is the the French or the Italian day, or so, old bread that you soak in the milk, which is mixed with the sliced apple to give it the pudding effect...then you add your strews for the top! If you use margarine instead of butter, and use almond milk in place of dairy milk...then you can make this yummy dessert; VEGAN...no eggs required in this recipe! Serve it hot, with a scoop of your favorite vanilla ice cream...I used Edy's Vanilla...yumm!

Apple Brown Betty
adapted from Cooking Light Magazine, 2007 issue
-original recipe by; Lia Huber

2 cups sliced peeled Granny apples
2 cups sliced peeled Rome apples
(I used all Rome apples)*
Zest and Juice of 1 lemon*
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 cup low-fat milk
1 Tablespoon mollases
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 ounces day old French or Italian bread
torn into 1/2 inch pieces
(I used 6 ounces)*
Cooking Spray
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
(I used 3/4 cup)*
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
(I used 1/2 cup dark brown sugar)*
1/4 cup chilled butter cut into small pieces
I used 1 stick (4 oz.=113 g.) sweet-unsalted butter)


 Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Combine sliced apples in a large bowl. Sprinkle with the mixture of sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
Combine milk with the molasses and vanilla in a medium bowl. Add the bread mixture; toss to combine.
Add bread mixture to apple mixture; toss to combine. Spoon mixture into an 8 inch pan, coated with
cooking spray.

Lightly spoon flour into a small bowl, combine with brown sugar (1/4 cup) and half the amount (1/4 cup)'
of the chilled butter, cut into small pieces, using a pastry cutter or two knives, until mixture resembles small