Monday, March 31, 2014

FAREWELL MARCH! ~ GRILLED ROSEMARY BALSAMIC PORK TENDERLOIN & ROASTED SWEET POTATOES

"It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light, and winter in the shade."

  ~ Charles Dickens, Great Expectations





Muscari 
(Grape Hyacinth)



 GRILLED ROSEMARY BALSAMIC PORK TENDERLOIN & ROASTED SWEET POTATOES

 ~ Moist and tender, perfect for a 'simple one plate spring supper'. 
(Slightly adapted from RecipeGirl.com )


2  lbs pork tenderloin (silver skin removed)
4  Tbsp. Balsamic vinegar
1/2  cup extra-virgin olive oil
2  tsp. crushed garlic
3  Tbsp. chopped 'fresh' rosemary
3  Tbsp. chopped green onions
1/4  cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1  Tbsp. freshly ground cracked pepper
coarsely ground sea salt to taste
2-3  Tbsp. white balsamic vinegar


  1. Combine marinade ingredients and pour over prepared tenderloins. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours, turning frequently. (Can also use a large ziplock bag). 
  2. Prepare grill. Let tenderloins sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes before grilling. Remove from marinade and grill on high for 8-12 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 150º. Allow to rest 5-10 minutes before slicing. 
  3. While tenderloins are cooking, heat marinade on high then turn down to reduce. Add white balsamic vinegar. 





4 scrubbed sweet potatoes (peeled or unpeeled)
extra-virgin olive oil
coarse salt & freshly ground cracked pepper

Slice potatoes in thin wedges or chop in bite-size pieces. Place in ovenproof pan or iron skillet. Toss with olive oil. Sprinkle with cracked pepper and coarse salt. Bake in 450º oven or 45 minutes or until roasted. (4 servings)





Thursday, March 20, 2014

VERNAL EQUINOX




For lo, the winter is past,
the rain is over and gone;
The flowers appear on the earth,
the time of singing has come
and the voice of the turtledove
is heard in our land.
The fig tree puts forth its figs,
and the vines are in blossom;
they give forth fragrance.
Arise my love, my fair one,
and come away. 

~ The Song of Solomon, 2:11-13

Saturday, December 21, 2013

WELCOME WINTER!

"Winter, a lingering season, is a time to gather golden moments,
embark upon a sentimental journey, and enjoy every idle hour."

~ John Boswell



'Old Man Winter'

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

NOVEMBER SONG ...


Hating to say goodbye,

heart shaped clumps of hosta cling ...



Monday, October 14, 2013

LIVIN'/LOVIN' SIMPLE MID-OCTOBER LIFE AT THE LAKE (SIMPLE GRILLED RIBEYES ~ SIMPLE KALE AND ROMAINE CAESAR SALAD)

 “Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.”

~  Dr. Seuss



Mid-October Sunset
(Hubbard Lake, MI)


SIMPLE GRILLED RIBEYES

Ribeye Steaks
Extra-virgin olive oil
chopped fresh rosemary
fresh chopped garlic to taste
freshly ground black pepper to taste

  • Slather steaks with olive oil, chopped fresh rosemary, garlic, and black pepper. Allow to rest for 20 minutes or so before grilling.
  • Grill on high to desired donedoness. We enjoy steaks rare/med rare but all depends on temp outside and your grill. Allow steaks to rest a bit before eating.


SIMPLE KALE AND ROMAINE CAESAR SALAD

 6 oz. bunch of sliced Kale (center spine remove if large)
6  oz. bunch of sliced Romaine Lettuce

Lemon (squeezed juice plus zest)
2 cloves minced garlic
1  Tsp. anchovy paste
1  Tsp. Dijon Mustard
6  Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper

freshly grated Parmesan cheese to taste

Combine lemon, garlic, anchovy paste, Dijon, olive oil, salt & pepper in blender until thick. Lightly toss with greens and top with grated Parmesan.



Mt Maria
(Hubbard Lake, MI)

Monday, September 30, 2013

FAREWELL SWEET SEPTEMBER! (LEMON SPINACH LENTIL SOUP)

"Autumn carries more gold in its pocket than all the other seasons." 

~ Jim Bishop




LEMON SPINACH LENTIL SOUP

~ A fall favorite

4  Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
2 diced stalks of celery
3  diced carrots
2  medium diced sweet onions
4-6  minced garlic cloves
3  bay leaves 
1  Tbsp. chopped fresh thyme (1 tsp. dried)
Freshly ground black pepper & coarse salt to taste
2  quarts organic chicken (or vegetable) broth
1  28 oz. can diced tomatoes
3  cups rinsed lentils (I like black, French green and red)

juice and zest from large lemon
1/2  lb. baby spinach 

  • In large stockpot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onions, carrots, and celery and cook until tender. Stir in garlic and thyme and cook for 2 minutes. 
  • Add broth, tomatoes, bay leaves, and lentils. Bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer 45 minutes or until lentils are soft. 
  • Add lemon zest, juice, and spinach. Cook until spinach wilts. Adjust seasonings. (Puree 1/2 of soup for creamier texture ~ add a bit of water if too thick). 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

"HOW DO YOU GET FROM HERE TO THERE, WHAT DO YOU DO?" (JUNE ~ MID-JULY RECAP) ~ SALMON with BLUEBERRY SAUCE/SALMON with GRILLED PEACH SALSA

"Life is short, God's way of encouraging a bit of focus."

~ Robert Brault



Two different worlds ... and I love both








SALMON with BLUEBERRY SAUCE

2  lb. Salmon Filet
2  Tbsp. butter
2  cloves minced garlic
1  Tbsp. fresh thyme (or one tsp. dried)
pinch of sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Sauce:

1  cup blueberries
juice from lemon
1  Tbsp. Arrowroot powder or cornstarch
2  Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
1  tsp. Herbes de Provence
1/4  cup white wine
1  Tbsp. butter


  • Heat grill. Rub salmon with butter and sprinkle with minced garlic and thyme and salt & pepper. 
  • Grill to desired taste. 
Sauce:  Mix juice of lemon with arrowroot powder or cornstarch in sauce pan. Add Blueberries, balsamic vinegar, Herbes de Provence, and white wine. Simmer on low for 20-30 minutes. Stir in butter and reserve until fish is done.  






















SALMON with GRILLED PEACH SALSA

For Salsa:

2  Peaches, cut in half and pit removed
1  Tbsp olive oil
2  Tbsp. finely chopped red onion
Small seeded and chopped jalapeno pepper
1  Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
2  heaping Tbsp. chopped cilantro
1  tsp. honey
juice of fresh small lime

For Salmon:

1 large or 2  7-8 oz. salmon filets
extra-virgin olive oil
fresh (or dried) thyme to taste
freshly ground pepper and sea salt to taste

  • Heat grill. Brush cute side of peaches with olive oil. Place cut side down on grill and grill peaches until caramelized but still hold their shape (about 3-4 minutes).
  • Remove peaches, slip off skin, and cut into 1/2 inch cubes. Toss in bowl with olive oil, onion, jalapeno, balsamic vinegar, cilantro, honey, and lime juice. Let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.
  • While salsa rests, season salmon with olive oil, thyme, salt & pepper.
  • Grill until desired taste or fish flakes easily. 
  • Remove from grill and top with Peach Salsa. 

Saturday, June 01, 2013

Sunday, April 28, 2013

SPRING BLESSINGS ... (SIBERIAN SQUILL 'Scilla siberica')

Blessings in life are often small and overlooked ...


Scilla siberica (Siberian squill or wood squill

... a sure sign of spring!

Saturday, April 27, 2013

APRIL LOVE (Spring Fever)

"It's spring fever. That is what the name of it is. And when you've got it, you want - oh, you don't quite know what it is you do want, but it just fairly makes your heart ache, you want it so!"

Mark Twain (Tom Sawyer, Detective.)



Friday, April 19, 2013

SIMPLE PLEASURES

“I adore simple pleasures. They are the last refuge of the complex.”


~ Oscar Wilde





Cheers to thawing April Lake!
(Hubbard Lake, MI)

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

SAYING GOODBYE TO WINTER ~ VERNAL EQUINOX

"Behold, my friends, the spring is come; the earth has gladly received the embraces of the sun, and we shall soon see the results of their love!"

~ Sitting Bull



Vernal Equinox
(Hubbard Lake, MI)


For lo, the winter is past,

the rain is over and gone;
The flowers appear on the earth,
the time of singing has come
and the voice of the turtledove
is heard in our land.
The fig tree puts forth its figs,
and the vines are in blossom;
they give forth fragrance.
Arise my love, my fair one,
and come away.

~ The Song of Solomon, 2:11-13

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

WON'T BE LONG NOW ~WITH 'THOUGHTS OF SPRING' (LENTEN-FARE: HONEY SALMON and ROASTED CAULIFLOWER)

"No matter how long the winter, spring is sure to follow."

  ~ Proverb




HONEY DIJON SALMON
~  delicious Lenten offering with Roasted Cauliflower and healthy baked Sweet Potato for color and flavor

1  lb. salmon (trout or like fish)
1/4  cup extra-virgin olive oil
3  Tbs. honey
3  Tbs. Dijon Mustard
2  cloves minced garlic
3  Tbs. fresh lemon juice plus zest
1/2  tsp. coriander
cayenne pepper to taste
dill weed to taste
freshly ground pepper to taste

  • Combine oil, honey, mustard, garlic, lemon juice plus zest, coriander, cayenne, dill, and ground pepper. 
  • Pour over salmon and marinate for 30 minutes or longer.
  • Bring to room temperature and grill on high for 7 minutes or, depending on thickness, until done to liking.
ROASTED CAULIFLOWER

Separate head of cauliflower into florets. Spread florets on roasting pan sprayed with Pam. Drizzle florets with good olive oil and toss until coated. Sprinkle with freshly ground black pepper and coarse salt to taste. Roast at 425º for 25-35 minutes until golden brown.


Sunday, March 10, 2013

DAYLIGHT SAVINGS ... SEIZE THE DAYLIGHT!

"Tempus fugit" 
(time flies)




'Kaleidoscope Clocks'