Saturday, February 24, 2018

Spencer's Snow Day.....

 "The white snow looks beautiful, and covers everything my eyes can see..." -Craig Stone ( Life Knocks)
 Spencer came early in the morning. He saw Howard. Howard liked leftover seeds. Spencer did not like seeds. But he liked Howard.
 Spencer saw the finches. They sat on snow covered branches and peeped. Spencer watched them for a while. His tail swished in the snow.
 Then it was dawn.
 Poe watched Spencer from the front window. Orange. Like marmalade.LIke the sunsrise.
 Trees hovered and quivered in snow. Gusts swooshed over the forest.
 Thrushes trilled from stark branches. Winter still. Spring to come. Spencer padded onwards.
 He saw the little black cat at his door. Poo stared. He was little.
 Spencer roared his best cat roar. Poo didn't even budge.  Then they stared at each other. 
 Satisfied, Spencer trotted over to see what the Stellar Jays were up to. 
 They were stuffing themselves with peanuts. Spencer swished his tail at them. 
 They didn't pay him any mind.
 A year before, he and his brother Smokey would sit on the porch and watch all the flying snacks.
 Today, Spencer found Raccoon tracks. Fun. He followed the tracks. There were a great many. Fun.
 The sun warmed the snow. Spencer gazed longingly at the hummer. He was feeding high up . He would make a lovely flying snack.
 Cordelia. On the fence. Observed Spencer . With calm and decorum. Spencer ignored her. She was far too pretty....
 Spencer had found a Grackle. Screeching away in the cherry tree.  Way up high. 
 Why oh why did snacks have to be so far away?
 More Raccoon tracks. Sniff. Sniff.  Deer jelly beans everywhere.  Sniff. Sniff.
 Spencer's paws were  getting cold. Snow was cold. He sat on the covered porch and  beamed.
 Come out and play. He said. Come out and visit.
 He left paw prints in the snow. Like his brother used to. . All those winters before......
"Deep in the winter, amidst falling snow, I feel you still here, such is the mystery to fear..." -Loreena McKennit

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Sally Lunn (recipe)

 "I think baking is very rewarding. If you follow a good recipe you will get success." -Mary Berry (from the Great British Baking show)
 I love the name "Sally Lunn" . An old world style bread, made in a sponge format that is very light. Sort of like a brioche.  One of my favourite quotes from a very old cook book I have says :" Sally Lunn is turned out to greet a hungry world......"
 MIX: 1 tsp, ½ cup warm,2 ¼ tsp yeast
 BEAT:  ½ cup softened, 3 eggs, ½ cup sugar. Add yeast mix.
 Beat all of this on medium. 
 ADD: 4 cups flour, pinch salt, 1 cup warm milk.
 Put in greased bowl. Cover and let stand on top of a warm oven till doubled in bulk.
 "I think baking's far easier than cooking, and because of that, it's approachable." -Paul Hollywood ( from the Great British baking show)
 POUR into greased angel food cake pan
 Let stand another hour till doubled in size. 
 BAKE in 350 oven for about 40-50 minutes till golden
 Turn out and serve to face a hungry world!
 Very good toasted, and served with creamed honey and butter.
 A 1780 guidebook to Bath, records tourists drinking two to three pints of Bath water 
( supposed to be healing), then sitting down to Sally Lunn buns. In the novel " The Chimes" by  Charles Dickens he mentions the partaking of  Sally Lunn. SO it's a famous spongy bread, that seems to make the rounds.
 Photographs 2018

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Apple Kuchen ( recipe)

 "The smell of good bread baking, like the sound of lightly flowing water, is indescribable in its evocation of innocence and delight...."                    -M.F.K. Fisher
 APPLE KUCHEN ( yeast risen)
 1 tsp sugar, ¼ cup warm water, 2 ¼ tsp yeast  mixed and let stand 10 minutes
 1 cup milk
½ cup marg
½ cup sugar
Pinch kosher salt
 Add these four ingredients to yeast mixture.
 2 cups flour
1 egg
 Add these two ingredients to mixture.

 2 cups flour
Add this ingredient to mixture
 Combine. Cover bowl. Chill in fridge for 2 hours. 
 Divide dough into 2 equal portions
 Press each portion into greased pan ( used a 9 x 13” but 9x 9” works well).  Press up sides to make edges.
Cut: 4 apples cut into thin slices. 
 COMBINE: ¼ cup melted marg, ½ cup sugar, 1 tsp ground cinnamon. 
 Press apples into dough. Slather with topping mixture. I use my hand, as it works a bit easier. 
 BAKE: 375 oven for about 30 minutes till brown. Serve warm or cold.
 "It looked like a world was covered in a cobbler crust of brown  sugar and cinnamon...."--Sarah Adddison Allen, (First Frost)
Photographs 2018