A thing of beauty is a joy forever Its loveliness increases; it will never Pass into nothingness; but still will keep A bower quiet for us, and a sleep Full of sweet dreams, and health, and quiet breathing.
– John Keats, Endymion
Arranging a bowl of flowers in the morning can give a sense of quiet in a crowded day like writing a poem, or saying a prayer.
– Anne Morrow Lindbergh, Gift From the Sea
This past week I’m attempting to meditate and center myself as I’m adjusting to the chaos. One of the university administrators asked me if I would be interested in teaching a virtual workshop as a way of engaging alumni during the pandemic. Students are feeling the cabin fever and are itching to learn new hobbies.
I decided to team up with one of my friends and co-teach a crochet class during Friday evenings in the month of March. My experience being president of a knitting club back in high school is coming in handy! In the first couple of hours within posting the event, 18 people signed up!
The deadline to register is the end of next week, but I may already have my hands full with 18 students! I’m planning out the logistics as my friend is figuring out the scarf pattern we’re working on. We picked school colors for the yarn to feature school spirit.
I had difficulty deciding what to bake this year. Since I’m at home due to lock-down, I’ve made three dishes that I have never tried before, but always wanted to taste. Two French dishes and one Dutch delight!
A while back, a baking magazine caught my attention with its lovely tangerine yogurt cake on the cover. Dorie Greenspan was thrilled to share her sweet and savory recipes.
I decided to go with something savory and settled on a mushroom quiche on page 54. I didn’t have a tart pan, so I settled for a pie pan. The aroma of the filling the air as it was baking in the oven. I was excited by the end result.
OH MY GOODNESS..
This quiche personally made me cry with happiness the moment I took a bite! No exaggeration here. This flaky crust was one of the best I’ve ever had. The combination of flavors really sat well with my palette.
I surprised myself. I gorged. I ate half the quiche that night!
My boyfriend said it was good, and my roommate said it was very rich.
Glazed Fruit Tart
Next up is dessert! A few years ago, I found this little book for sale at a used books store and was intrigued by the prospect of 500 types of pies and its variations.
I settled on a glazed fruit tart recipe. The basic sweet crust tasted like a soft cookie. Next time, I will stretch the crust over the pie pan. It shrunk as I baked it. 🙂 I included a citrus scent to the vanilla extract mixture to my pastry cream, arranged my sliced fruit, and topped it off with a warm apricot glaze.
All the bright colors truly made my day! What I love about this recipe was that it wasn’t too saccharine. The whipped pastry was lightly sweetened and the combination of the natural sugars from the layers of real fruit was refreshing. Loved the fusion of flavors!
Melt-In-Your-Mouth Butter Cookies
As I was digging further in my ingredients bag, I found some powdered sugar, and decided to use it to make another treat. Shiran Dickman, blogger at Pretty. Simple. Sweet., shared a recipe for melt-in-your-mouth butter cookies. My cute cookies looked like a village of little igloos with snow sprinkled outside their homes.
Overall Feelings on This Year’s Picnic
This year’s blogger’s bake-off was truly special. The stress from this current events took such a toll on many people around the world. Many bloggers turned to the joy of baking for the first time as they were confined to their homes. Comfort food has a way of reminding us of our connection to family and friends. I know I feel closer to the authors who created these recipes because they brought me happiness to share with everyone I know. Hope you enjoyed my little kitchen adventure! 🙂
Good evening everyone! VJ’s prompt about ripening has me thinking about quite a few things today. With fall looming around the corner, I couldn’t help but think of persimmons with its bright orange color! It is a mighty fruit packed with some powerful benefits:
Aids in weight loss & its fiber promotes a healthy digestive system
Can help regulate sugar in blood for diabetics
Rich source of phytochemicals which helps in warding off inflammatory infections
Anti-hemorrhagic properties which helps control excessive bleeding
Helps with hypertension because of its low sodium levels
Source of vitamin C to strengthen immune system
Source of vitamin A, shibuol, betulinic acid to help fight cancer
Source of a complex vitamin B which helps improve eye health
Source of copper which helps iron absorption and produces red blood cells
Source of potassium which helps retain significant minerals
My thoughts begin to wander onto some quotes, however…
“Age is not all decay. It is the ripening, the swelling of the fresh life within that withers and bursts the husk.”
My father used to grow some persimmon trees in our backyard. They come in two varieties: astringent and non-astringent. When they’re not ripe, biting into one leaves a bitter taste that lingers in your mouth taking its time before it leaves your tongue. With a little more patience, you can taste a wonderfully sweet fruit which makes the wait worth it.
“The world is full of magical things patiently waiting for our wits to grow sharper.
Eden Phillpotts, author
A rather interesting analogy to segway into some new events in my life. I recently got hired to be a technical writer at a cybersecurity firm! Very excited by this new development and chapter of my journey. Yet, it took me a while to get to this point. Many times I felt rather impatient with my own growth, but in hindsight, it took some time for my knowledge and information gained from my studies to mature before it was finally ready to be put into action.
“Knowledge comes, but wisdom lingers. It may not be difficult to store up in the mind a vast quantity of facts within a comparatively short time, but the ability to form judgement requires the severe discipline of hard work and the tempering heat of experience and maturity.”
Calvin Coolidge, Former U.S. president
It’s been a few days since I’ve drank from this firehose of this major life transition – a constant outpouring of new ideas to take in, process, and from that immense gulp, I’m responsible for creating a grand tool that can unlock a whole new world of possibilities for my coworkers and myself.
“Nothing is finer for the purposes of great productions, than a very gradual ripening of the intellectual powers.”
I should really slow down though as the quote above reminds me of the fine potential that can be derived from a gradual ripening. 😉 That said, I feel like a giddy metal worker dancing amidst the flying sparks as I’m in creation mode!
So I just finished decorating my cake after a busy day teaching a youth group how to make sushi! I decided to go with a fruity creation after munching on some fruit the other day. I decided to improvise this Betty Crocker Mango Layer recipe by pairing it with strawberries. I created the cake last night and stuck it in the freezer so that the texture would hold as I applied the frosting. I sliced the strawberries into thin slices so that I can place them in between the layers. I sliced the mangoes into small cubes to decorate the top. Showered it with sprinkles and more frosting and….
Voila! Overall, it was a labor of love! Hope you enjoyed my colorful creation! ❤