Monday, December 19, 2011

This Witch Can Cook!

Hello,
Well, the holidays are upon us and the winter solstice is only a few days away... I actually had the day off yesterday and I spent it in the kitchen baking up a storm.  I broke out the cute apron I bought at BBCMS in Birmingham this fall when I was there doing an author event for Practical Protection Magick. The apron is black and orange with lace and silly ball fringe. Embroidered on it is two crossed brooms, a witch hat and the phrase, "This Witch Can Cook!" 

That bib apron is so 1950's retro and silly that it appeals to my sense of humor. I think it's the ball fringe around the bottom that got me... how can you not smile at that?

First on my baking list was cranberry orange bread and banana nut bread. I bake these in mini tins and give them as gifts to my family every year. Its an inexpensive way to give a thoughtful gift, and my relatives look forward to my baking gift boxes every year.
Also, I think that there is something so festive about cranberry orange bread. And as the orange is aligned to the Sun I always feel it is appropriate at this time of year. There is nothing like adding a little fresh orange zest and some cranberries to your basic quick bread batter.
Banana nut bread I just have a thing for... ever since I stayed at a B&B in Salem Massachusetts several years ago. The Salem Inn used to serve it for breakfast with fresh fruit. I just experimented at home with a basic recipe and doctored it up until I had one my whole family liked.

There is one cookie I typically make only at Yuletide- Jam thumbprint cookies. I tried this recipe for the first time because well, I am a Barefoot Contessa fan. I saw these on her cooking show and thought... That looks good. This year I made them with both apricot and blackberry jam. I think they look like little suns, don't you?
For the recipe follow this link to the Food network website. www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/jam-thumbprint-cookies-recipe/index.html
I will warn you now... these are some dangerous cookies! Besides the fact that they have almost a pound of butter in them- they are some of the tastiest shortbread cookies I have ever baked.  So I make them, enjoy one while they are warm, and freeze them immediately so I don't end up eating them all before the holidays. These cookies have become a family favorite.

I did not get around to wrapping my presents yesterday, as I spent hours in the kitchen instead. I'm going to work on that chore this morning. In the peace and quiet with NO football on the television. I like football and enjoyed watching the Patriots smack down the Broncos yesterday... But sheesh. It's the football on all damn day- that really gets to me.

I don't have to go in to work until this afternoon today, so my master plan for the morning includes brewing up some tea, cranking up my iPod and hitting the "Yule" playlist and wrapping gifts listening to my favorite holiday tunes.
Enjoy your week and the coming holidays everyone!
Blessed be, Ellen




2 comments:

  1. Sounds like a great way to spend the day! Love the apron!! Thank you for the recipe link!! If you ever get bored, I would love to see your bread recipes as well. But only if you're bored. =) Thanks for the blog this morning!! Have a good one.

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