Friday, February 21, 2014

Have Some Honey.......

Stocking up for the winter on my local cranberry bog honey is a must for me. I LOVE IT.   It not only tastes delicious, it's beneficial to your health.  A tasty health gift so to speak.  Local honey has made a substantial difference in my seasonal allergy symptoms.  The health advantages are tremendous.  Besides helping with allergies it reduces cough and throat irritations, has anti-bacterial and anti fungal properties and is a probiotic.

My favorite way of eating honey is with yogurt, fruit and nuts.  This afternoon though, I had it in tea with cinnamon and lemon.
“The keeping of bees is like the direction of sunbeams.” 
― Henry David Thoreau

Monday, February 17, 2014

White Mountain Weekend..........

My sister Mary and my brother- in- law Rick invited us up to their home in the mountains.  Sparked by the frigid weather and the snow falling wildly on the mountains we partook of a delicious lunch enjoyed leisurely and interrupted only by the stunning view.  We had our choice of a hearty beef stew or a cream of roasted butternut squash soup.  Both were served up in large dark brown earthenware mugs which seemed to echo the whole rustic elegance of both their home and the view.

Because we were in the heart of the mountains our appetites seemed almost as expansive as the view through the windows.  We ate more than usual and savored every bite. Having supporting roles to the stew and soup but just as enjoyable was the cured hard Italian sausage and local aged sharp cheddar cheese.

Next up,  Castelvetano olives and imported cornichons from France.  The vinegary tartness of both the olives and pickles were perfect accompaniments to the sharp cheese and sausage.  A choice of red or white wine smoothed and mellowed out the lunch.
This is the view from the living room. Isn't it beautiful. I wish you could actually see how tall the mountains are from my photos. To gain some perspective, the little specks on the mountains are the skiers.  The gray hue of the photos is from the snow that fell most of the weekend.  Thank you Mary and Rick it was a lovely weekend and just what we needed.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Kale and White Bean Soup with Chorizo

Like everyone else these days, I am in love with kale and eat it when ever I can.  This soup has just the right amount of spice from the garlic, heat from the chorizo and creaminess from the white beans.  Delicious!
  • 1lb. chopped kale, large stems removed
  • 3/4 lb. chorizo, casing removed ( its usually 2 links)
  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 2 carrots diced
  • 2 medium red potatoes, diced
  • 32 oz. low sodium chicken broth
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 14.5 oz. diced tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp. chicken base
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 cans cannellini beans rinsed and drained
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
In a large pot with 2 tbsp. of olive oil in the bottom saute the chorizo, onion, garlic, kale, carrots, bay leaves and red unpeeled potatoes.  Keep stirring everything around until the chorizo is nicely brown and the onion is cooked.
Add the chicken broth, water, tomatoes, chicken base, drained beans and simmer for 45 minutes. It's ready that quick.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Simple Pleasures.....Simply Delicious

I don't know where I first saw these.  It could have been Pinterest, a blog or maybe someone just told me about them.  At this point I don't really care because they are delicious.   Stuff a white chocolate chip inside a fresh raspberry and that is it.  Simple pleasures.........

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

More Snow......

We had quite a snow storm today. When it winds down later this evening the storm will have dropped  a foot of snow.  Usually a storm this big  means a snow day.  So.....this afternoon dressed for the weather, I decided it was a good day to use my  new snowshoes. It was cold, snowy and a lot of fun.  You can feel you muscles working almost immediately and I loved it.  Snowshoeing is a great cold weather activity.  I wish I had tried it years ago.  Here is some information on the benefits of snowshoeing from the Tubbs brand snowshoe website.
Snowshoeing improves your coordination, balance and endurance, so you’ll become a more fit walker. Here are the benefits of snowshoeing for walkers:
• Enhanced total body strength, which boosts energy and endurance
• Tone hip flexors, thigh muscles, and butt, due to the lifting motion involved in every step forward
• Improved arm strength as a result of the swaying you’ll do to propel yourself forward, with or without snowshoe poles
My hips are hurting already! 

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