Sunday, March 30, 2008

Sunday Worship

I am trying to improve the quality of my Sacrament Meeting experience. I think this desire has been inspired by the great Sacrament Meetings we have had in our ward lately. Palm Sunday was great - our high council speaker was awesome, along with a great talk by the Bishop's daughter. Then Easter Sunday one of our top ten favorites of all time spoke - the "W" family. They did an awesome job, along with the youth speaker. All wonderful talks that focused on the Savior. We also had beautiful inspiring music.
Often the music we sing is the most uplifting and inspiring to me. Today in Sacrament Meeting we sang hymns from my childhood - oldies but goodies. I was touched by the opening hymn,"Precious Savior, Dear Redeemer" - especially in light of some the events of the last little while.

Precious Savior, dear Redeemer, Thy sweet message now impart.
May thy Spirit, pure and fervid, Enter every timid heart;
Carry there the swift conviction, Turning back the sinful tide.
Precious Savior dear Redeemer, May each soul in thee abide.

Precious Savior, dear Redeemer, We are weak but thou art strong;
In thy infinite compassion, Stay the tide of sin and wrong.
Keep thy loving arms around us; Keep us in the narrow way.
Precious Savior, Dear Redeemer, Let us never from thee stray.

Precious Savior, dear Redeemer, Thou wilt bind the broken heart.
Let not sorrow overwhelm us; Dry the bitter tears that start.
Curb the winds and calm the billows; Bid the angry tempest cease.
Precious Savior, dear Redeemer, Grant us everlasting peace.

This last verse brought to mind the messages of the last two weeks. Too often we think we can handle things ourselves, and what we need to do is turn to the Savior. Only He can truly understand all that we are going through and has the power to comfort and sustain us when the world lets us down.

Strawberry Shortcake

We had Easter Dinner with the Bishop's family and we brought the dessert - Strawberry Shortcake. Strawberries were such a good deal at Fiddleheads Marketplace last week it was a no-brainer - 99 cents a quart! The Bishop emailed and asked for the recipe for my shortcakes - anything that I make lately with a WOW factor comes from "America's Test Kitchen" - I love these guys. They publish "Cook's Illustrated", "Cook's Country" and a myriad of cookbooks. My cousin's son is an editor for them - they are based in Vermont. You will find that their recipes always include some "extra" steps that you might think to leave out. I find they have tested and tested these recipes to discover the ways to get the most flavor and best quality. Although occasionally tempted to leave out these steps, I find it wise to follow their suggestions. Someday I will take pictures as I cook and post them. Someday.
So... here it is.

Strawberry Shortcake

  • 2 quarts strawberries, hulled
  • 6 Tbsp sugar
Crush 3 cups of the strawberries with a potato masher. Slice the remaining 5 cups of berries and stir into the crushed berries along with the sugar. Let sit at room temperature until the sugar has dissolved and the berries are juicy, about 30 minutes.

  • 2 cups all purpose flour, plus extra for the counter
  • 5 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 8 Tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes and chilled
  • 2/3 cup half-and-half
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 large egg white, lightly beaten
While the berries macerate, adjust an oven rack to the lower-middle position and heat the oven to 425 degrees. Pulse together the flour, 3 Tbsp of the sugar, the baking powder, and salt in a food processor until combined. Scatter the butter pieces over the top and process until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal, about 15 pulses. Transfer to a bowl. (I confess I don't have a food processor so I make it like pie crust, with a pastry blender)
Blend the half-and-half with the beaten egg and pour into the bowl with the flour mixture. Stir with a rubber spatula until large clumps form. Turn the mixture onto a lightly floured counter and knead lightly until the dough comes together.
Use your fingertips to pat the dough into a 9 by 6 inch rectangle about 1 inch thick. Cut out 6 dough rounds using a floured 2 3/4 inch biscuit cutter. Reform the remaining dough and cut 2 more rounds. Place the rounds 1 inch apart on a parchment-lined baking sheet, brush the tops with the beaten egg white, and sprinkle with the remaining 2 Tbsp sugar.
Bake the shortcakes until golden brown, 12 to 14 minutes. Let the shortcakes cool on the baking sheet for at least 10 minutes.
To assemble: Split each biscuit in half, laying the biscuit bottoms on individual plates. Spoon a portion of the fruit over each bottom, then top with a dollop of whipped cream. Cap with the biscuit tops.
(I learned from the test kitchen that you shouldn't twist the biscuit cutter or your biscuits will come out flatter. Just push down, lift up and then lift up your biscuits by separating the dough. I repeat do not twist the biscuit cutter.)

Whipped cream
  • 1 cup heavy cream, chilled
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
Whip the cream, sugar and vanilla in a chilled bowl with an electric mixer on low speed until frothy and the sugar has dissolved, about 1 minute. Increase the speed to high and continue to whip until doubled in volume and soft peaks form, 1 to 3 minutes.


Friday, March 28, 2008

Day late and a dollar short...

OK I know this is too late for St. Patrick's Day, but here is my recipe for Corned Beef Dinner.

Corned Beef Dinner

Place one 3-4 pound corned beef brisket in Dutch Oven (I use flat cut), barely cover with water. Add 1/2 cup chopped onion, 2 cloves garlic, minced; and 2 bay leaves. (If your corned beef came with a seasoning packet, add that, too). Cover and simmer 3-4 hours until tender. (I go long for really tender fall-apart beef.)
Remove meat from liquid, keep warm. Add 6 medium potatoes, peeled and quartered, 6 carrots, peeled and sliced (you can also add turnip here if you wish), cover, bring to boiling; cook 5 minutes. Add 6 cabbage wedges and cook 25 min. longer.
If desired glaze meat while vegetables cook. I recommend this step! To glaze, spread fat side (I trim most of the fat off at this point before glazing) of meat lightly with prepared mustard. Sprinkle with mixture of 3 T. brown sugar and a dash of ground cloves. Bake in a shallow pan at 350 degrees about 15 minutes.

Serves 6 (OK maybe only 3-4 Kanes)

A promise of spring...

Two flower shows this year! A quick trip to Philly to see our grandson included the bonus of attending the Philadelphia Flower Show with Kelley. This show is outstanding, exceptional, and exhausting! We had a great time. Here are a few of the floral arrangements and displays that I loved.

Larish and I also went to the Flower Show in Boston. Not quite the same, but we had fun. It is much smaller. Here are some highlights from that show.This is a fish and bug made entirely out of plant materials. You look in a little window like you are looking at an aquarium. Very cool!


Will all this snow ever melt? (add several inches to the above picture from today's storm)

Will the storms drains be enough to collect the melted snow without "the floods of 2008"?
Will spring ever come? No, really. Will spring EVER come?

Checking items off the list

Click here to see our bucket lists. Larish's dream has come true...OK maybe it wasn't truly the open seas, but we did get out into the ocean and had a wonderful cruise. The Freedom sails from St. Augustine, Florida. Larish had the opportunity to raise the sail (I am sure there is a more technical term, but to me he just pulled hard on this rope when they told him to)Didn't he do a great job?Aunt Lou came with us. It was so peaceful and beautiful. They used engine power to get us off the dock, but once we went under the "Bridge of Lions" they set the sails and turned off the engine. Silence is golden. The sunshine made the water glisten. You can barely see the lighthouse in the distance.
We loved St. Augustine. It is a beautiful old city and we had a great time, but definitely the highlight of the trip for us all was this Windjammer Cruise!This is what the Freedom looks like full sail, going past the fort in St. Augustine. What a beautiful day!

Friday, March 21, 2008

Oooops it was a Grammy, not an Oscar. I am still proud of Josh. And for those of you who are curious, go get the Steve Earl CD "Washington Square Serenade".Or at least download (legally of course) these two songs:"Tennessee Blues" and "Sparkle and Shine". Love it. Love Josh. And I want him to be rich, so buy those songs legally, ok?

Thursday, March 20, 2008

And the Oscar goes to...

That's my boy! Look here to see what one of my kids is up to! Congrats, Josh Wilbur! You are awesome, but we all know that. Good job, Gary and Linda!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Happy Anniversary Katie and Rode

March 15, 2007. One of the happiest days in the history of mankind!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Hey! I know that lady!

I was outside the temple on Thursday, and a familiar face came walking out from the distribution center downstairs. It was none other than Ann Romney! I never recognize famous people so was quite proud of myself for knowing her. I told her I wished that her husband was still running for president and she said, "Everybody does!" and I told her that I thought he was great and that I did vote for him. (Duh, so did a lot of other people. Vote for him, that is. Was that the best I could do?) Anyway she was very pleasant and didn't act a bit disturbed that some stalker lady spoke to her.I will say this. She is even more beautiful in person. She is a beautiful woman as you can tell by her pictures, but seeing her in person, well she is just gorgeous.
The last time I saw a Romney at the temple, we were standing in line on a Sunday at 6am to go to the first dedicatory session (in 2000?) and this guy behind us had to be someone important because every network and local news person was interviewing him, asking him what he thought about this new temple. I asked Larry who the important guy is behind us and he said "Beats me". Well, later I am reading about the Olympics, Massachusetts Politics etc and lo and behold - the famous guy was Mitt Romney!Shoot, I wish I had told Ann that I love her meatloaf recipe! It is a very sweet meatloaf and I love sweet meatloaf.

President Romney's Meatloaf Cakes

- 1 ½ lbs ground beef
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- 1 egg
- 4 slices of white bread broken into pieces or bread crumbs
- ¼ cup onion, chopped
- 2 tsp seasoned salt

Sauce Ingredients
- ½ cup ketchup
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 1 tsp dry mustard
- ¼ tsp cloves
- ¼ tsp All spice

Mix together loaf ingredients, shape into 6 individual loaves. Bake for 15 minutes at 350 degrees. Mix together sauce ingredients and spoon on top of loaves. Continue baking at 350 degrees for 30 additional minutes.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Family History

Larish has been having a great time here doing family history. He has visited with some second cousins and gotten some great stories for the family tree.

Pinewood Cemetary on the corner of Main Street and Peninsula Drive is a pretty famous place during bike week - Koons burial site
Hot Dog Stand in the cemetary! (It is bike week after all)

The Boot Hill Saloon during bike
week from the Pinewood Cemetary.

We went to Tomoka State Park and saw a statue made with a Coquina Stone base that his Uncle Barnette built.

We also saw beautiful bald eagles flying overhead.

Bike Week

Well, Uncle Billy, eat your heart out. Here I am in Daytona Beach Florida and it's bike week!

The Weather

Wednesday February 27

Thursday February 28

Ahhhhhhhhhhhhh Florida!