Archive from March, 2014
Mar 31, 2014 - MOCKTAILS, RECIPES    No Comments


Light and refreshing taste.

Makes about 10 pints.

3 1/2 cups superfine sugar  or stevia
2 cups hot water
4 large fresh elderflower heads
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
juice and pared rind of 1 lemon
8 1/2 pints water, heated to almost boiling

Mix the sweetener with the hot water.  Pour the mixture into a large glass or plastic container.
Add all the remaining ingredients.
Stir well, cover and leave for about 5 days.

Strain off the liquid into sterilized screw top bottles.  Glass or plastic.
Leave for a further week (or a bit more).
Serve very cold with slivers of lemon rind.

Mar 31, 2014 - ON THE SIDE, RECIPES    No Comments


8 Servings

6 tablespoons olive oil
2 1/2 pounds rutabagas, peeled, cut into 1″ cubes
2 pounds onions, cut into 1″ chunks
1 pound carrots, cut into 2″ long pieces
1 pound orange-flesh sweet potatoes (yams), cut into 1″ cubes
30 garlic cloves, unpeeled
14 fresh sage leaves or 1 tablespoon dried, crumbled
7 sprigs fresh rosemary or 1 tablespoon dried, crumbled
Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 450°

Place 2 heavy large roasting pans in oven and heat 15 minutes.
Remove from oven.
Add 1 tablespoon olive oil to each.
Add half of vegetables, garlic and herbs to each pan.
Drizzle 2 tablespoons oil over vegetables in each pan.
Season with salt and pepper.
Roast vegetables until tender when pierced with fork, stirring occasionally, about 1 1/4 hours.

Mar 31, 2014 - HELPFUL HINTS    No Comments


Everyone has points they’d like to hide – a few extra pounds, bags under the eyes, etc.

Here’s some pointers sure to keep things hidden.

1.  Lose weight – stand-up straight.  Standing up straight can make the appearance of losing 5-10 pounds in an instant.

2. Color – an instant face-lift.  Wearing dark colors can make you thinner, while light colors can add a few pounds.

Learn your face shape and color accordingly.

3. Size matters – It actually hurts your internal organs when you squeeze into clothes that are too small.  Find your size and own it!

4. Breasts and Hips – Remember the rule of Color.  If you want something to look bigger, wear lighter colors to accent it.
If you want to make it look smaller, wear darker colors.

5. Always wear things you like and recycle the rest.  Thinking is half the battle and if you think something looks awful on you,
chances are you will wear it bad and feel it all the time you wear it.  Your toss off may be another’s treasure so recycle to the homeless,
the missionary barrel or to someone who thinks it’s awesome.  Both of you will benefit.

Mar 30, 2014 - MEAT DISHES, RECIPES    No Comments


Makes 6 servings.

This recipe evokes the flavors of the Mediterranean Sea and the lower Caucasus Mountains. Now you have a reason to visit that little Middle Eastern market for accessories and appetizers such as stuffed grape leaves, taramosalata, or marinated eggplant.

And for an extra treat, fill the chicken with a prosciutto stuffing a full day ahead to allow the flavor to develop.

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley (Italian is best)
2 large garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons dried oregano, crumbled
6 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, minced
2 ounces prosciutto, chopped
1/2 cup pine nuts, lightly toasted

6 skinless chicken breast halves
1/4 cup dry white wine

1 14 to 18 ounce can tomatoes, drained, chopped
salt and pepper
3 tablespoons chopped parsley (Italian is best)

Combine the 1/4 cup parsley, garlic ad oregano in a small bowl.
Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in heavy small skillet over medium-low heat.
Add onion and sauté until onion is golden brown, about 15 minutes.
Stir in half of parsley mixture and continue to cook until garlic is tender, about 2 minutes.
Transfer mixture to small bowl.  Stir in prosciutto and pine nuts.  Cool completely.

Insert small sharp knife into side of each chicken breast at thick end.
Carefully cut side to create 2-inch deep, 2-inch wide pocket.
(Do not cut completely through chicken breast!)
Skewer with toothpicks to close the pocket opening.

Place chicken in baking dish.
Drizzle with 2 tablespoons oil.
Pour wine over.
Sprinkle both sides of chicken with remaining parsley mixture.
Cover and marinate at least 8 hours.  (Can be prepared up to one day ahead.)

Heat remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in heavy large skillet over high heat.
Add chicken (reserve marinade) and cook until brown on both sides, about 3 minutes.
Add half of reserved marinade.
Reduce heat to medium-low.  Cover and cook until chicken is cooked through, about 5 minutes.
Transfer chicken to plates.

Add tomatoes and remaining marinade to skillet.
Boil until slightly thickened, stirring constantly, about 2 minutes.
Season with salt and pepper.
Spoon tomato mixture over chicken.

Sprinkle with 3 tablespoons parsley and serve.  Enjoy!


Mar 30, 2014 - FUN WITH HERBS    No Comments


Softens and Moisturizes

1 tsp beeswax
1/4 teaspoon honey
4 tbsp almond oil
4 tbsp rosewater

Put the beeswax, honey and almond oil in a glass jar standing in a small pan of hot water.
Stir until melted and blended.

Stir vigorously while pouring in the rosewater.
Take the jar out of the water, and continue to stir gently until the mixture has cooled.

Mar 30, 2014 - MOCKTAILS, RECIPES    No Comments


Prepared in 1 Quart quantity

1 quart (32 ounces) vegetable cocktail juice
4 packets, Stevia
2-3 dashes (1/2 teaspoon) celery salt
2-3 dashes (1/2 teaspoon) seasoned salt
2-3 dashes (1/2 teaspoon) Worcestershire sauce
2-3 dashes (1/2 teaspoon) Tabasco ® sauce
2-3 dashes (1/2 teaspoon) lime juice
GARNISH – 4 pickle or cucumber spears

Combine all ingredients. Stir together thoroughly.
Pour over ice in Old-fashioned glasses. Stir.

Best when served within four days.
Calories per serving – 45
Makes 4, 8 ounce servings.

Mar 1, 2014 - HELPFUL HINTS    No Comments


When it comes to a holiday spread or, perhaps, a party of friends, cheese trays are an easy accompaniment for appetizers and snacks.

Here’s a tip to take them over the edge and be the talk of the party.


Use the cookie cutters of any shape (leaves for fall, footballs for the SuperBowl, bunnies for Easter – you’re only limited by your imagination!)
Use them to cut the cheese…er, on the table that is!  OR

Coarsely chop (if your cheese isn’t already grated) and place in micro-wave safe measuring cup (or melt fondue style on the stove…)
When cheese is melted and pourable, pour into the candy molds.

Refrigerate for about 20 minutes to set.  Remove from the molds by flexing the mold.

Cheese is a dairy product.  You’ll want to refrigerate it until serving.

Remember, type of cheese and pattern of cookie cutter or candy mold is only limited by your imagination.  HOW CHEESY!!