Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Apple Walnut Pancakes
2 cups flour
5 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon sugar
3 eggs, separated
1 cups unsweetened applesauce
1 cup skim milk
3 tablespoons canola oil
1/4 cup chopped walnuts

Sift together dry ingredients. In a separate bowl beat egg yolks,
applesauce, milk and oil. Combine liquid and dry ingredients.
Stir in chopped walnuts. Whip egg whites into soft peaks and
gently fold into batter.

Spray hot griddle with non-stick oil. Pour one-third cup batter per pancake, cook on each side until light golden brown. Serves 4.

Maple Apple Syrup
1 cup maple syrup
4 tablespoons frozen apple juice concentrate
3-inch cinnamon stick

Put all ingredients together in saucepan and simmer on medium
heat for 15 minutes. Remove cinnamon stick and
serve warm over pancakes.
Makes 1 1/4 cups.
Recipes from Apples of Eden

Monday, September 28, 2009

Butternut Squash Soup

4 tablespoons butter
1 large onion, chopped
2 med. potatoes, peeled and cubed
3 carrots, sliced
3 lbs. butternut squash, peeled and cubed
6 cups chicken stock
2 teaspoons curry
pinch each: nutmeg and ginger

Garnishes: sour cream, croutons, choice of grated cheese, chives

Melt butter in soup pot, saute onion and carrots until soft; stir in potatoes and squash. Add stock, bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer, partially covered for 40 minutes. Add curry, nutmeg and ginger. Puree soup in food processor or blender. Return to saucepan, add salt and pepper to taste. Garnish as you wish.

Friday, September 25, 2009

"There aren't enough days in the weekend."
~Rod Schmidt

Luminaria Labyrinth Walks

September 25

Come to the Delaware Art Museum’s Copeland Sculpture Garden on Fridays for an evening of relaxation and education! Our volunteers will be in the Labyrinth in the Fusco Reservoir to provide guests with a historical overview of labyrinths ...

Sugarloaf Crafts Festival

Wilmington, Delaware

September 26

Chase Center on the Waterfront

Lovers of fine crafts and art will find more than 200 top artisans displaying and selling their unique creations in pottery, sculpture, glass, jewelry, fashion, home décor, furniture and home accessories, items for the garden, and photography. In addition to top national artists, the Festival will also introduce new and emerging artists showcasing the latest trends in handmade fashion and accessories, statement jewelry and fine art.

6th Annual Taste of Newark, Delaware
September 27

Advance tickets for Taste of Newark are sold out. Forty tickets will be available the day of the event for $50 each. This year's Taste of Newark will include a battle of the chefs featuring competitors Eric Aber from the Homegrown Café, Mark Chopko from the Courtyard Café at the Marriott Courtyard Newark-University of Delaware hotel on campus, Brad Dawson from Caffe Gelato, Jason Dietteric from Stone Balloon Winehouse and Dick Schmidt of Blue Crab Grill. Joining the culinary lineup will be featured chefs John Ondo of Lana Restaurant in Charleston, S.C., and Matt Haley from the Comcast Food Show. Ondo is known for merging fresh ingredients with the sunny flavors of the Mediterranean and Haley is executive chef at five fine beach restaurants.
For details, call (302) 368-2561, ext. 12, or visit the Downtown Newark Partnership Web page.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Civility costs nothing.

"To live a long, healthy and serene life we need the crucial help of a network of caring people – we need social support. In order to gain and keep social support we need social skills.Choosing Civility (the 25 rules of considerate conduct) re-discovers and expounds the essential skills that allow us to live well among others." Johns Hopkins Professor - Pier Massimo Forni

The 25 Rules of Considerate Conduct:
1. Pay attention
2. Acknowledge others
3. Think the best
4. Listen
5. Be inclusive
6. Speak kindly
7. Don't speak ill
8. Accept and give praise
9. Respect even a subtle "no"
10. Respect others' opinions
11. Mind your body
12. Be agreeable
13. Keep it down (and rediscover silence)
14. Respect other people's time
15. Respect other people's space
16. Apologize earnestly
17. Assert yourself
18. Avoid personal questions
19. Care for your guests
20. Be a considerate guest
21. Think twice before asking for favors
22. Refrain from idle complaints
23. Accept and give constructive advice
24. Respect the environment and be gentle to animals
25. Don't shift responsibility and blame

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

"She (the cat) hasn't had her full ration of
kisses-on-the-lips today...
she had the half-past-six one in the garden,
but she's missed tonight's." -Colette

A Kiss-In-The-Dark
Into each mug put 1 oz. brandy and 1 oz. kahlua. Fill with hot coffee and top with lots of whipped cream.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

"Summer's loss seems little, dear, on days like these."
Ernest Dowson
My husband took this photo on his way to work this morning.

Pumpkin Latte
2 heaping tablespoons canned pumpkin
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
espresso and hot milk
Into each large mug put first 5 ingredients. Add shot of espresso and hot milk, whisk. Top with whipped cream and a dusting of nutmeg. Best wishes for a beautiful morning.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Book cover for 'Rules of Civility'

George Washington's Rules of Civility

110 Maxims Helped Shape and Guide America's First President

By age sixteen, Washington had copied out by hand, 110 Rules of Civility & Decent Behavior in Company and Conversation. They are based on a set of rules composed by French Jesuits in 1595. Presumably they were copied out as part of an exercise in penmanship assigned by young Washington's schoolmaster. The first English translation of the French rules appeared in 1640, and are ascribed to Francis Hawkins the twelve-year-old son of a doctor.

Today many, if not all of these rules, sound a little fussy if not downright silly. It would be easy to dismiss them as outdated and appropriate to a time of powdered wigs and quills, but they reflect a focus that is increasingly difficult to find. They all have in common a focus on other people rather than the narrow focus of our own self-interests that we find so prevalent today. Fussy or not, they represent more than just manners. They are the small sacrifices that we should all be willing to make for the good of all and the sake of living together.

These rules proclaim our respect for others and in turn give us the gift of self-respect and heightened self-esteem.

Richard Brookhiser, in his book on Washington wrote that "all modern manners in the western world were originally aristocratic. Courtesy meant behavior appropriate to a court;chivalry comes from chevalier – a knight. Yet Washington was to dedicate himself to freeing America from a court's control. Could manners survive the operation? Without realizing it, the Jesuits who wrote them, and the young man who copied them, were outlining and absorbing a system of courtesy appropriate to equals and near-equals. When the company for whom the decent behavior was to be performed expanded to the nation, Washington was ready. Parson Weems got this right, when he wrote that it was 'no wonder every body honoured him who honoured every body."

Richard Brookhiser,Founding Father: Rediscovering George Washington (New York: Simon & Schuster Inc., 1996) pp. 130-131.
For a list of the rules please visit

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Blue crabs caught Saturday, Elk River, Maryland, by dear husband.

Crab and Cheddar Soup
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon white pepper
4 cups milk
1/2 pound grated cheddar cheese
dash Tabasco sauce or 1 teaspoon prepared brown mustard
(I like to add both)
2 cups crab meat, shell and cartilage removed
chopped chives
Chesapeake seafood seasoning to taste

In a saucepan melt butter and blend in salt, pepper and flour. Gradually add milk, stirring constantly until thickened. Add cheese, stirring over low heat until cheese melts. Add crab meat and heat very slowly. Garnish with chives and seafood seasoning. Perfect in a thermos with a loaf of crusty bread for a day on the river.

Recipe from Of Tide & Thyme

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Speak easy, knock softly and be cool.

I have my secret password, will check my Tommy Gun at the door, get frisked for a wire and grease the doorman a 10 spot. Going to have a sockdolager of a night with my sugar daddy.

Prohibition began in 1920. A Speakeasy was the only place to get a decent drink, and no respectable Flapper would be seen without her flask neatly tied to her leg. Most cocktails only masked the taste of inferior booze. Fruit was added to the standard Old Fashioned at this time just for this purpose. Though the Mint Julep dates back before the 1800's, F. Scott Fitzgerald gave the drink a popularity boost in his 1925 novel, The Great Gatsby.

Roaring 20's Cocktails

2 oz. Gin
1/2 oz. maraschino liqueur
1/4 oz. lemon juice
Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker and shake well. Strain and serve. Garnish with a cherry.

Bronx Cocktail, Dry
1 oz. dry Gin
1 oz. French dry Vermouth
1 slice orange
1 slice pineapple
In a shaker muddle orange and pineapple. Add ice, gin and vermouth. Shake forty times, strain and serve.

6 tsp. Gin
2 tsp. lime juice
2 dashes Angostura Bitters
Shake with ice and strain into a cocktail glass.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Vintage Fruit Labels, Lisa Cook

Cinnamon Cider Martinis
Cinnamon-Sugar Rim:
Apple cider
Sugar mixed with a little cinnamon

1 cup apple cider
3/4 cup Cinnamon-Flavored Vodka

Dip the edges of 4 martini glasses in apple cider and rim them with the cinnamon sugar.
In a small saucepan, combine the 1 cup cider and vodka. Heat over medium heat until warm but not hot. Pour into rimmed martini glasses and serve.

Cinnamon-Flavored Vodka:
Place 2 cinnamon sticks inside bottle of vodka. You may need to pour out a small amount of the vodka to make room. Seal tightly and let stand at room temperature for about 2 weeks, depending on the desired level of flavor. Shake bottle every few days. Remove cinnamon sticks and use.

Recipe from Holly Burrows and Katie Walter

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

"The breezes taste
Of apple peel.
The air is full
Of smells to feel-
Ripe fruit, old footballs,
Burning brush,
New books, erasers,
Chalk, and such.
The bee, his hive,
Well-honeyed hum,
And Mother cuts
Like plates washed clean
With suds, the days
Are polished with
A morning haze."
- John Updike, September

Ye Olde Tavern's Burgundy Cider
1 gallon apple cider
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
4 cinnamon sticks
4 whole cloves
3/4 cup sugar
1 bottle Burgundy wine

Heat the cider, lemon juice, cinnamon sticks, cloves and sugar in a large pot.
Stir until the sugar dissolves. Heat to a boil and remove from heat. Add wine.
I like to place mixture in a crock pot and keep warm during serving.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Rice with Olives and Feta
1 cup uncooked white rice
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup diced red pepper
1/4 cup Kalamata olives, pitted and diced (do not use canned olives)
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup dry white wine
3 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
black pepper
salt to taste

Preheat oven to 350. Saute rice in oil in a large skillet for about 10 minutes over low heat. Remove from heat and transfer to a 2-quart baking dish with a lid.
Add the remaining ingredients to the rice, stir and cover.

Bake until the liquid is absorbed, about 50 minutes. Serve immediately.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Blueberry Gingerbread
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup light molasses
1 cup fresh (or frozen, thawed) blueberries
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk

Preheat oven to 350. Butter a 9-inch square cake pan.
In a large mixing bowl, beat the oil, sugar and egg until light. Add the molasses and beat until thick. In a small bowl, toss the blueberries with 2 tablespoons of the flour until well coated. Mix the remaining flour with the dry ingredients. Add the flour mixture and the buttermilk alternately to the creamed mixture, and blend until smooth. Fold in the blueberries. Turn into the prepared pan. Bake for approximately 45 minutes.
Best served warm.

Friday, September 11, 2009

O beautiful for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties
Above the fruited plain!
America! America!
God shed his grace on thee
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea!

O beautiful for pilgrim feet
Whose stern impassioned stress
A thoroughfare of freedom beat
Across the wilderness!
America! America!
God mend thine every flaw,
Confirm thy soul in self-control,
Thy liberty in law!

O beautiful for heroes proved
In liberating strife.
Who more than self their country loved
And mercy more than life!
America! America!
May God thy gold refine
Till all success be nobleness
And every gain divine!

O beautiful for patriot dream
That sees beyond the years
Thine alabaster cities gleam
Undimmed by human tears!
America! America!
God shed his grace on thee
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea!

O beautiful for halcyon skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties
Above the enameled plain!
America! America!
God shed his grace on thee
Till souls wax fair as earth and air
And music-hearted sea!

O beautiful for pilgrims feet,
Whose stem impassioned stress
A thoroughfare for freedom beat
Across the wilderness!
America! America!
God shed his grace on thee
Till paths be wrought through
wilds of thought
By pilgrim foot and knee!

O beautiful for glory-tale
Of liberating strife
When once and twice,
for man's avail
Men lavished precious life!
America! America!
God shed his grace on thee
Till selfish gain no longer stain
The banner of the free!

O beautiful for patriot dream
That sees beyond the years
Thine alabaster cities gleam
Undimmed by human tears!
America! America!
God shed his grace on thee
Till nobler men keep once again
Thy whiter jubilee!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

"The leaves fall, the wind blows, and the farm country slowly
changes from the summer cottons into its winter wools."
- Henry Beston, Northern Farm
Orange Cardamom Coffee
Seeds from 2 cardamom pods
1/2 cup whole coffee beans
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
4 cups cold water
3/4 cup Grand Marnier
Whipped cream
Grated orange zest

Grind the cardamom seeds and coffee beans together in a coffee grinder. Using a standard coffee maker, spoon the coffee/cardamom mixture into a coffee filter. Sprinkle the cinnamon and nutmeg atop the coffee grounds. Pour cold water into the coffeemaker and brew.

Divide the coffee and Grand Marnier among 4 mugs and stir. Top each with a dollop of whipped cream, sprinkled with orange zest and serve.

Recipe from Some Like It Hot

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Delicious coffee and cake, Bonaire.

Fresh Apple Cake
3 tbsp. butter
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. soda
1 cup flour
3 cups chopped apples
1/4 cup nuts
1 tsp. vanilla

Mix cake ingredients in order given. Bake in 9x9 inch pan approximately 45 minutes at 350 degrees.

1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup whipping cream
1 tsp. vanilla

Cook first four ingredients in small saucepan just until it reaches boiling. Add vanilla and serve over cake while warm.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

The simple stuff of summer time...

Old-Fashioned Lemonade
4 lemons
4 cups cold water
3/4 cup sugar
Cut lemons into thin slices, remove seeds. Place slices in a large non-metal bowl; sprinkle with sugar. Let stand for 10 minutes. Press lemons with back of spoon to extract juice. Add water, stirring and pressing lemons. Remove lemon slices and serve over ice. Garnish with additional lemon slices.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

"And this sleep spread itself over the whole Castle,
and the doves slept on the roof.
The wind died down and in the tress no little
leaves stirred anymore." -Brothers Grimm
When my son was little and needed a calming time before bed,
he would pick out a tea cup from the cabinet and this is what we made.

Sleeping Prince
1 cup milk
1 peppermint tea bag
1 teaspoon honey
Pour milk in saucepan, add tea bag and warm.
When warm remove tea bag, stir in honey, sip until sleepy.

Our tea cabinet.