Watery Wednesday #120


During winter's snow imagine warm watery breezes on a spring day at Disney's Epcot park!

Watery Wednesday is here and you are welcome to share your watery photo images on the blog entitled:


And here’s some watery images for a winter theme:

Delaware & Raritan Canal State park- Frozen edges










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Recipe Chicken

Chicken Marbella

I’m on a quest for roast chicken recipes using the whole chicken and when the price is good, I’ll being preparing this for a smaller group.

“Frawley of Bathers’ Pavilion, Balmoral Beach  has made Chicken Marbella from a cookbook bought by her grandmother in the 1980s. She adapts it using dried basil instead of oregano.”

Chicken Marbella

1/2 cup olive oil

1/2 cup red wine vinegar

1 cup pitted prunes

1/2 cup pitted Spanish green olives

1/2 cup capers with a bit of juice

6 bay leaves

1 head of garlic, peeled and finely chopped

1/4 cup dried oregano

Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

4 chickens, 1.25kg each, quartered

1 cup brown sugar

1 cup dry white wine

1/4 cup flat leaf parsley or fresh coriander, finely chopped

Combine the olive oil, vinegar, prunes, olives, capers with juice, bay leaves, garlic, oregano and salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add the chicken and stir to coat. Cover the bowl and refrigerate overnight.

Preheat the oven to 180C. Arrange the chicken in a single layer in one or two large, shallow baking trays and evenly spoon over the marinade. Sprinkle the sugar over chicken and pour the wine around the chicken.

Bake, basting frequently with the pan juices until the thigh pieces yield clear yellow (rather than pink) juice when pricked with a fork, 50 minutes to 1 hour.

With a slotted spoon, transfer the chicken, prunes, olives and capers to a serving platter. Moisten with a few spoonfuls of the pan juices and sprinkle generously with the coriander or parsley.

Serves 16 pieces, 10 or more portions

From The Silver Palate Cookbook, published by Workman and distributed by Hardie Grant, $36.95

Homecook hints Frawley often halves the recipe ingredients for fewer serves. She also replaces the green olives with black ones and lines the baking tray with baking paper so it’s easier to clean.


This recipe is from Sidney Australia:

Kristy Frawley of Bathers‘ PavilionBalmoral Beach

Oven temperature 180 degrees Celsius =           F



Blizzard 2010, Welcome snow!

Snow- a view from the door, it's 24 degrees F and Blizzard conditions.

Winter is finally upon us.  This year,we have a snowstorm with Blizzard warnings beginning on the day after Christmas.

We went out to church for the 10:30 am mass, and came outside to see the start of small snow flurries.    I asked , perhaps we can do  a little shopping for after Christmas sales, before lunch.

The snow is piling onto everything! See the snow in the light of the lamp!

We returned home by 1:00 p.m.  Lunch was delicious, Lasagna andbroccoli and honey glazed carrots, with iced green tea. Afterwards , we relaxed on the couch to watch some movies on the On-Demand channel.

Lasagna-my sister says I make the best!

Every once in a while, I would get up to look outside the windows at the blowing and swirling snow.  Judging by the increasing little pile of snow on the summer patio furniture stacked outside.

Earlier this week, we had the Moon’s Eclipse on the same night as the event of Winter Solstice.

Blizzard Dec. 26, 2010-the snowplow is out, we'll have to dig our cars out tomorrow!















Good Morning,

During the night, I dreamed that all of the snow blew away, and that everything was all clear.  I opened my eyes, jumped out of bed to look out the window.  SNOW is still here, and none of the cars have left for work at 7:15 AM.     A Snowplow passed by.






A snowy sunrise sky! After the blizzard








I must say, this morning, the sky just after sunrise is looking very beautiful.  So silky white, almost as if there is snow capped mountains in the distance.

Snowy sunrise! Morning after the blizzard!

Merry Christmas



Jingle Bells, Look who found santa!

warm Gingerbread cookies fresh from the oven are one of my favorite images of Christmas

Ham Recipes

Maple Orange-Glazed Ham


Spiral sliced ham brushed with a glaze of orange juice, maple syrup, star anise, cinnamon and cloves.

  • * 1 Cook’s® Bone-in Spiral Sliced Ham
Maple-Orange Glaze
  • * 1/2 gallon (2 quarts) orange juice
  • * 2 star anise
  • * 2 cinnamon sticks
  • * 3 whole cloves
  • * 1 cup pure maple syrup
  1. Remove and discard glaze packet from ham or reserve for another use. Prepare ham according to package directions, uncovering and brushing occasionally with the Maple-Orange Glaze for the last 30 minutes of the baking time.
  2. Maple-Orange Glaze: Combine orange juice, star anise, cinnamon and cloves in large saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer until glaze is reduced to 1 cup. Stir in syrup. Strain glaze; cool.
  3. Carve ham just before serving.

Great Substitute: Prepare as directed, using Cook’s® Bone-in Butt or Shank Portion (or Half Ham).

Brown Sugar and Mustard-Glazed Ham


A simple glaze prepared with spicy brown mustard and dark brown sugar brushed over spiral sliced ham.

  • * 1 Cook’s® Bone Spiral Sliced Half Ham
Brown Sugar and Mustard Glaze
  • * 1/2 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • * 2 tablespoons Dijon Mustard
  • * 1 teaspoon water
  1. Remove and discard glaze packet from ham or reserve for another use. Prepare ham according to package directions, uncovering and brushing occasionally with the Brown Sugar and Mustard Glaze for the last 30 minutes of the baking time.
  2. Brown Sugar and Mustard Glaze: Mix sugar, mustard and water until well blended.
  3. Carve ham just before serving.

Great Substitute: Prepare as directed, using Cook’s® Bone-in Butt or Shank Portion (or Half Ham).

Total Lunar Eclipse Coincides with Winter Solstice on Dec. 21, 2010

Okay Night Owls, this ones’s  for you!, On Tuesday am EST between 2:41 am to 3:17 am EST  ( or 17 minutes past midnight PST)  is the best time to get outdoors dressed in your woolens for a picture of the Lunar Eclipse.

This lunar eclipse falls on the date of the northern winter solstice.

“This is very rare “, according to Dr. Tony Phillips of science . nasa.gov.

However, Total lunar eclipses in northern winter are fairly common. There have been three of them in the past ten years alone.

The eclipse begins on Tuesday morning, Dec. 21st, at 1:33 am EST (Monday, Dec. 20th, at 10:33 pm PST)
Eclipse Photos: Upload your photos at weather.com/iwitness!

If you’re planning to dash out for only one quick look -Ã?  it is December, after all -Ã?­ choose this moment: 3:17 am EST (17 minutes past midnight PST). That’s when the Moon will be in deepest shadow, displaying the most fantastic shades of coppery red.
“Why red?

A quick trip to the Moon provides the answer: Imagine yourself standing on a dusty lunar plain looking up at the sky.

Overhead hangs Earth, nightside down, completely hiding the sun behind it. The eclipse is underway.

You might expect Earth seen in this way to be utterly dark, but it’s not. The rim of the planet is on fire! As you scan your eye around Earth’s circumference, you’re seeing every sunrise and every sunset in the world, all of them, all at once.

This incredible light beams into the heart of Earth’s shadow, filling it with a coppery glow and transforming the Moon into a great red orb. ”

Total lunar eclipse visible to all of the United States

How rare is that?

Total lunar eclipses in northern winter are fairly common.

Saint Lucia Day is December 13, 2010

Saint Lucia day is December 13, 1010 and my dad’s cousin Lucy’s birthday is today!

Happy birthday, cousin Lucy!

Saint Lucia Coffee cake wreath:

Saint Lucia Wreath

A Saint Lucia coffeecake is the traditional offering on Dec. 13. The rich dough is colored and flavored with saffron. Either a large wreath or a plate of individual buns — formed in the shapes of wreaths, crowns and cats — is perfect for a holiday brunch or when guests come to call. This authentic recipe is from Beatrice Ojakangas’s “Scandinavian Feasts” (University of Minnesota Press). If yours is a small household, divide the dough in half and make two smaller wreaths.

1 package active dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water (105 to 115 degrees)
3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup (1 stick ) butter, melted
1 teaspoon saffron threads (a good pinch)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup currants
2 eggs, warmed
4 to 4 1/2 cups flour
1 large egg, beaten
Sugar sprinkles, optional

To make the dough: In a large bowl, sprinkle the yeast over the warm water. Add a pinch of sugar. Heat the milk and add the melted butter to it; cool until the mixture is lukewarm.

Pulverize the saffron with 1 teaspoon of the sugar, using a mortar and pestle or with the back of a spoon in a small dish. Add 1 tablespoon of the warm milk-and-butter mixture and allow the saffron to steep for 5 minutes.

Add the saffron mixture, milk-and-butter mixture, sugar, salt, currants and eggs to the yeast. Using an electric blender on medium speed, beat until blended. Add 2 cups flour and beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Add 2 cups of the remaining flour and mix with a wooden spoon to make a medium-stiff dough. Let dough rest for 15 minutes.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured board. Knead for 8 minutes or until the dough is smooth and satiny. Place the dough in a clean, lightly oiled bowl. Turn the dough over to lightly oil the top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

To make a braided wreath: Punch the dough down and divide into 3 parts. With the palms of your hands, roll and shape each part into a rope-like strand about 36 inches long. Braid the strands by aligning them vertically and alternately crossing each outer strand over the center strand. Shape the braid into a circle and place on a greased or parchment-covered baking sheet. Pinch the ends together where they meet to seal the strands and to conceal the beginning and end of the braid.

Transfer to the baking sheet. Brush with the beaten egg. Sprinkle with sugar sprinkles if using. Let rise for about 45 minutes or just until puffy.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until lightly browned, or until a wooden skewer inserted into the center of the dough comes out clean and dry. Cool on a rack. Makes 16 servings.

Note: To make two smaller wreaths: Divide the dough into 2 parts and braid as above. Place each wreath on a baking sheet, allow to rise and bake for about 20 minutes.

reposted from another blog, POST Gazette.com from Pittsburg.
As far as weather, my mother always says, “whatever Pittsburg, Pa gets, that we’re going to get”; for example SNOW is coming our way, since Pittsburgh has it.

Saint Lucia was Italian

Oddly, Saint Lucia was Italian, a Sicilian martyr. So how did an Italian girl-turned-saint come to be honored in Sweden?

There are several legends about the real Saint Lucia. One of the most common is that she was born of wealthy, noble parents about 283 AD in Syracuse, Sicily. Her father died when she was very young.

When her mother fell ill and her death appeared imminent, the desperate Lucia took her on a pilgrimage to the tomb of Saint Agatha, where miraculous healings were rumored to take place. The mother was healed and both women embraced Christianity. Together they pledged to use their wealth to help the sick and the poor.

At the time, Sicily was under the rule of an emperor, and Christianity was forbidden in favor of pagan gods. But the devout young Sicilian virgin held to her faith and distributed food to the homeless and starving.

Many of those poor families sought refuge in caves, and Lucia would make her way through the passageways with armfuls of bread. She wore a crown of candles on her head to light the way, leaving her hands free to distribute the food.

Now the plot thickens. Lucia vowed to remain a virgin. But before her father died, he had arranged her marriage into a pagan family, a deal that Lucia had no intention of honoring. Her betrothed, however, demanded her hand as his bride. Lucia flat-out refused. In a rage, the suitor took his revenge and reported Lucia’s Christian faith to the Roman officials, setting up a worst-case scenario.

On Dec. 13, 304 AD, Lucia was led before a court where she was sentenced. But she was one tough cookie. When the guards tried to drag her away, she was immovable. They tried to poke out her eyes, but she could still see. In desperation, the court ordered that she be burned. Bundles of wood were piled up around her and the fire ignited. But she was not consumed by the flames. Lucia was finally killed by the sword of one of the soldiers.

Later she was venerated as a martyr and saint, and the day of her death, Dec. 13, was named Saint Lucia’s Day.

Bringing light to Sweden

Time passed, and the day had no real significance for centuries. As Christianity spread through Europe and into Scandinavia, though, the pagan celebration of Winter Solstice had to be replaced with a Christian celebration. In keeping with “timing is everything,” winter solstice happened to fall on Dec. 13, so Saint Lucia was the natural choice.

The legend of the celebration was cemented when a terrible famine came to the Province of Varmland in Sweden during the middle ages. The poor village was starving to death. But on Dec. 13 of that year a large white ship was seen coming through the night across Lake Vanern, with a beautiful young woman standing on the bow. She was wearing a brilliant white gown, and a ring of light encircled her head.

The country people boarded the ship to find that its cargo was food, clothing and supplies. They quickly unloaded it, and as they carried the last baskets away the people looked back to see that the ship was no longer there.

Probably, it had been a much-needed supply ship from another province. But many felt in their hearts that it was a gift from Saint Lucia, and as the story spread, celebrations of Saint Lucia’s Day began. Even after the calendar was reformed and winter solstice fell on a later day, the 13th of December remained the celebration of Saint Lucia.

Visiting Lucy and family in Vermont, 2008

12 Days of Christmas- Cookies

12 days of Christmas cookies, let’s start with apple.
Appledoodles, a variation on the traditional Snickerdoodles.

Appledoodles Recipe
(Adapted from Simply Recipes)


Cookie Ingredients:

8 Tbsp. (1 stick) unsalted butter
2/3 cup brown sugar
2/3 cup white, granulated sugar
2 eggs
2 cup all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp. cornstarch
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. nutmeg (optional)
1 small apple, peeled, cored and diced small (about 1/4-inch cubes)
Cinnamon/Sugar Mixture Ingredients:

1/2 cup sugar
3 Tbsp. ground cinnamon

Preheat your oven to 350°F. In a mixer, cream the butter on medium-high speed until it’s soft, smooth and light.

Add both of the sugars to the creamed butter and mix until they are fully incorporated, and lighter in color. Stirring vigorously, add the egg to the mixture and beat until the batter looks uniform.

In a separate bowl, stir together the flour, cornstarch, baking soda, salt and nutmeg. Then slowly fold into the batter until just combined. Then add in diced apples, and gently fold them by hand into the batter until well-distributed.

Form balls of dough (I used a cookie scooper) and plop them in cinnamon sugar, swirling to coat. On a greased or parchment lined cookie sheet, place the dough balls 3 inches apart. Use your fingers to press and flatten the dough slightly and sprinkle an extra pinch of cinnamon sugar on the flattened surface.

Set the first timer for 7 minutes. Turn the pan around and set a second timer for 7 minutes. If you are using a greased pan they might be done at this point, or need another minute. If you’re using parchment, cookies will take 2-3 minutes more. You are looking for golden edges and a blonde middle.

Cool on a baking sheet and enjoy. Snickerdoodles will keep in an airtight container, at room temperature for 3 days, but they are best eaten the day they’re made.

Makes 30-40 cookies.

from networked blogs .com BlogHer

Skywatch Friday-Slow Food’s “Terra Madre” day will be celebrated on December 10, 2010

Lancaster county farm

Celebrate the local farmers and shops and restaurants that support them in your neighborhood community!

Pa farm and clouds














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Ruby Tuesday

O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree

Winter brings the Holiday season , and I’m joining Mary The Teach at http://www.workofthepoet.blogspot.com    to share a little ruby color for Ruby Tuesday.

As a girl, I recall my grandmother’s small white Christmas tree which she decorated with shiny glass ornaments and pretty little birds that clipped on the branches.   On my Christmas tree, can you find the red cardinal?


Christmas Greetings!

This a favorite painted snowman ornament, actually a little too big for the Christmas tree.  Beneath it are two hand-made Christmas stockings of holly print and  a red and white print.  Can you find the Santa’s?

Christmas caroling was a lot of fun last year at this chapel.  After participating in a  sing-a-long  with a choir of religious  music and Hymns from five different countries inside the chapel, we were all given small white candles that were lit and joined in some Christmas carols together.

Joy To the World…….


Candles' all aglow in the night while we sing!








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