Saturday, August 28, 2010

"Look at that sea, girls-all silver and shadow
and vision of things not seen.
We couldn't enjoy its loveliness any more if we had millions of dollars and ropes of diamonds."
Lucy Maud Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

We should read to give our souls a chance to luxuriate.
~Henry Miller

Cucumber, Radish and Watercress Sandwiches

with Truffled Goat Cheese

Truffle oil lends an earthy flavor; it can be found at specialty foods stores and some supermarkets. If you can't find the oil, these sandwiches will still be delicious without it.

9 ounces soft fresh goat cheese
1/2 cup chopped watercress
1 teaspoon truffle oil
12 very thin slices white bread
1 bunch radishes, very thinly sliced
1/2 English hothouse cucumber, peeled, thinly sliced

Blend goat cheese, watercress, and truffle oil in processor until just combined. Season with salt and pepper. Place bread slices on work surface. Spread each with goat cheese mixture, dividing equally. Set aside 24 radish slices for garnish. Top 6 bread slices with cucumber slices, then remaining radish slices. Sprinkle with pepper. Top with remaining bread slices, cheese side down. (Can be made 2 hours ahead. Wrap individually in paper towels; chill.)

Trim sandwich crusts. Cut each sandwich into 4 squares. Transfer to platter. Top each with 1 radish slice and serve.

Bon Appétit, April 2003

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

"When summer gathers up her robes of glory,
and like a dream of beauty glides away."
- Sarah Helen Power Whitman

Monday, August 23, 2010

"The last of Summer is Delight

Deterred by Retrospect.

'Tis Ecstasy's revealed Review

Enchantment's Syndicate.

To meet it -- nameless as it is

Without celestial Mail

Audacious as without a Knock

To walk within the Veil."

- Emily Dickinson, The Last of Summer is Delight

Radish, Butter and Bread

1 bunch (approximately 2 dozen) small, firm, fresh radishes
8 slices best-quality dark or white bread, cut into quarters
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
Fleur de sel, coarse salt, or sea salt

Wash (don't peel) and trim radishes; set a dozen or so tender, fresh leaves aside.

Place the washed whole radishes in a plastic container; fill container with enough water to cover the radishes, add 4 to 6 ice cubes, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

Just before serving, thinly slice radishes into rounds (sliced paper thin like translucent sheets of ice). Each radish round should be tipped with color. Chop or sliver radish leaves.

Spread one side of each piece of bread generously with butter. Top with some chopped radish leaves and then cover with the slices of radishes.

Serve, offering the salt at the last minute before eating (let each guest sprinkle their own salt on top of the radish slices).

radish+sandwich+01 Radish Sandwich   Never Doubt the French

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Find yourself a cup of tea; the teapot is behind you.
Now tell me about hundreds of things. (Quote by - Saki)

Honey Custard Pies

4 eggs
1/2 cup honey crystals (or brown sugar)
1/2 tablespoon vanilla
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups half and half
ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

You will bake these custards in a baking dish filled with water. Place four to six custard cups or small bowls in the baking dish if you are making individual custards. Place a soufflé dish in the center of the baking dish if you are making a single dessert.

Whisk the eggs, honey crystals, vanilla, salt, and half and half in a bowl until smooth but not foamy. Pour the mixture into the dish or dishes. Sprinkle the tops with cinnamon.

Pour very hot water into the baking dish and around the dessert dishes and to a depth of one-inch.

Bake six dishes for about 30 minutes, four dishes for about 40 minutes, and a single dish for about 55 minutes. Baking times will vary depending on the baking dishes used and the temperature and amount of water surrounding the dishes. The custards are done when a knife inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool on wire racks. After cooling, the custards should be refrigerated.

Photo Country Living

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The perfect spread for scones, tea cakes and biscuits.

1 cup whipping cream
1 8 oz. package cream cheese, softened
½ cup powdered sugar
1 8 oz. carton dairy sour cream

In medium mixing bowl, beat whipping cream until stiff peaks form. In separate bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth. Add powdered sugar and sour cream. Beat until smooth and fluffy. Fold in whipped cream. Refrigerate until serving time.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

My best friend, Cordy

Beef and Rice for Dogs

2 1/4 cups cooked brown rice

2 cups lean ground beef (80/20 or leaner)

1 2/3 cups finely chopped and mixed carrot, tomato, green bean and cored, peeled apple

1 1/2 tablespoons canola oil

1/2 teaspoon salt

In a nonstick skillet over medium heat, cook the meat until cooked through. Drain off the fat and allow to cool to room temperature. In a bowl, combine all of the ingredients and mix thoroughly. Divide into four portions, depending on the size of your dog. Serve one portion immediately and store the rest in the refrigerator or freezer.

Makes 6 cups or 4 servings.

Adapted from Better Food For Dogs by David Bastin, Jennifer Ashton and Dr. Grant Nixon

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Something about the summer breeze
Waving against the maple trees
The heat of the summer against heavy eyes
And the endless row of sleepy sighs

The smell of hyacinth and fresh mowed grass
A softly humming car making a pass
Children away in a field as they play
A dreamy background in the middle of the day

The coolness of the grass beneath sunbathed feet
The slow clouds moving to block the heat
To drift away on a simple thought
Precious moments before time is lost

K.C. Jean Kellam

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Chilled yellow tomato soup with black-olive cream

5 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 large leeks, white part only, well cleaned and chopped

1 tablespoon finely minced fresh thyme, or 1 teaspoon dried

2 bay leaves

2 pounds plum tomatoes, preferably yellow, trimmed and cut in chunks

3 1/2 cups chicken broth

2 teaspoons sugar

1 tablespoon salt

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/3 cup olivada (black olive puree), or 1/2 cup pitted imported black olives pureed with 1 tablespoon olive oil

1/4 cup whipping cream

2 red plum tomatoes, cored and diced, for garnish

To make soup, melt butter in large saucepan over low heat. Add leeks, thyme and bay leaves. Cover, and cook 20 minutes, stirring once or twice. Stir in tomatoes, chicken broth, sugar, salt and pepper. Bring to simmer, and cook, uncovered, until tomatoes are soft and soup has thickened, about 25 minutes, stirring once or twice.

Cool slightly, remove bay leaves, and puree in a food processor. Place in a bowl, cover, and refrigerate until cold, at least 5 hours. The soup can be prepared to this point up to 2 days ahead.

To make olive cream, put olivada in a small bowl and whisk in the cream. Taste the soup

and adjust seasoning if needed. Ladle into chilled bowls, and drizzle with the black olive cream. Sprinkle with diced red tomatoes, and serve.

Note: Warmed and with the addition of minced fresh vegetables and herbs, the soup can be used as a sauce for rice salad. Warmed and with the addition of leftover cooked seafood, the soup makes a pleasing pasta sauce, as well.

Recipe from The New York Times Country Weekend Cookbook

Monday, August 2, 2010

"When you realize there
is nothing lacking,
the whole world belongs to you."
-Lao Tzu