Wednesday, November 04, 2009


"November always seemed to me the Norway of the year."
~ Emily Dickinson
(November Flower of the Month)


~ Sweet Decadence from an old Southern Living, perfect for the holidays

20 ladyfingers
3 (16-oz.) cans undrained apricot halves
2 envelopes unflavored gelatin
5 organic egg yolks
1 1/4 cups sugar, divided
1/8 tsp. salt
1 cup milk
2 Tbsp. apricot brandy (or light rum)
1 (2-oz.) package slivered almonds
1 1/2 cup whipping cream
3/4 cup whipping cream
2 Tbsp powdered sugar
1/8 tsp. almond extract


sliced toasted almonds
fresh mint sprigs

  • Cut a 30 x 3-in. strip of wax paper; line sides of a 9-inch springform pan with strip. Split ladyfingers in half lengthwise; line sides and bottom of pan with ladyfingers.
  • Drain apricots, reserving 1/2 cup juice. Set aside 4 apricots for garnish.
  • Add remaining apricots to food processor and process 1 minutes. Set aside. Sprinkle gelatin over 1/2 cup juice and set aside.
  • Combine egg yolks, 3/4 cup sugar, and salt in heavy saucepan. Gradually add milk; cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, about 4 minutes, or until mixture thickens and food thermometer reaches 160 degrees. Add softened gelatin mixture, stirring until gelatin dissolves. Stir in pureed apricots, brandy, and slivered almonds. Chill mixture until consistency of unbeaten egg whites (about 30 minutes).
  • Beat 1 1/2 cups whipping cream until foamy; gradually add remaining 1/2 sugar, beating until soft peaks form. Fold whipping cream into apricot mixture; spoon into springform pan. Chill 8 hours.
  • Remove ring from springform pan; remove wax paper. Beat 3/4 cup whipping cream until foamy; gradually add powdered sugar and almond extract, beating until soft peak form. Pipe or dollop on top of mousse. Slice reserved apricots; arrange on whipped cream. Garnish with toasted almonds and fresh mint springs.


Roses and Lilacs said...

What lovely photos, the pinks blend so beautifully. Oddly, I have never seen those mum colors available here. Our garden centers are years behind in carrying the newer hybrids.

The apricot mousse sounds wonderful.

Marysol said...

Another lovely image Joey. It resembles a ballerina's tutu (I might've butchered the spelling).

Did you know I was a ballerina once? Yes, I still remember that day...

Monica the Garden Faerie said...

Hmmm, does that make Sweden December and Finland January?! Thanks for all the lovely mum shots. It's funny because as a kid I never liked mums and was bummed they were my birthday month flower, esp. since I didn't like topaz as the birthstone, either. I felt jipped. But now I love mums and I'm wild about amber, which comes in the same golden color as topaz... and I feel lucky! ;-)
P.S. Do you know how to look up people's birthdays on Blotanical?

Chloe m said...

Scrumptious recipe, and such divine pink mums. I think the mums have less calories, i will stick with those. Thanks for sharing.

Unknown said...

Beautiful mosaic, Joey. And I like the flower angle. In a different perspective. Gorgeous blooms!

The mousse sounds wonderful. Have a great November!

TYRA Hallsénius Lindhe said...

Hm...November is not my favourite month of the year, the only good thing about it that I can stay indoors without bad conscience and bake. I love making my own bread, just now I'm doing some experimenting with different sourdough recipes. Love your beautiful mums and I looked at your mums from last year too, very nice Joey.

xoxo Tyra

joey said...

Hi Marnie ~ actually, these mums are quite ordinary ones I used for color inside. One is an outdoor mum for a basket by the living room fireplace and the others are in small arrangements for tables, etc. Good natural lighting on my sunporch made for a fun photo shoot.

Very clever, Monica :) Actually, I'm not a big fan of most mums (hate the smell) but some are lovelier than others and photograph beautifully. I never plant them in the garden (shame on me ... I buy, enjoy, and pitch ...) And I'm with you regarding topaz as our birthstone. In Blotanical, you can find birthdays by visitng gardener's 'Plots'.

Great idea, Rosey :) Mum petals, though edible, are not my favorite so I never have to worry about eating too many :)

Thank you, dear Marysol, and no I did not know that you were once a ballerina but considering your many talents, I am not surprised! Please tell me more ...

I agree, November is very conducive for baking, Tyra. Since I have not finished putting my gardens to bed, I feel guilty in the kitchen unless it's after dark (which at 6 is too early these days). Your house must smell divine! Though it's been years since I've baked a good loaf of bread, I use to bake all my own when the children were small, sourdough a favorite (got my starter in San Francisco, many, many, years ago during the hippie era) xxoo ;)

Mary Delle LeBeau said...

This is my first visit to your blog. I love it. Your quotes, your photos collages, all such good photos. I'm really impressed.

Anonymous said...

The other half of my personality lives with a little frilly person who loves to decorate her house with pink! I almost built a farmhouse all white inside and these flowers on your site today made me wish I had. But here I am living in a craftsman that I love surrounded by my golden tones. Ahhh, choices choices. That's why I garden. Lovely today and yummy too Joey. I love Southern Living.

joey said...

Delightful to see you, Mary Delle, and thank you :)

Hi, dear Anna! Actually, their throats have golden tones and might work. Since I love southern gardens, trying to incorporate as many zone friendly plants as possible in my own, I have collected years of old Southern Living magazines (Southern Accents, Veranda) and many of their cookbooks. Though often tweaked as most recipes in my kitchen (except for baking), their recipes are wonderful. Off for a busy few days at lake this afternoon ... hope your weekend is wonderful :)

The Weathered Pane said...

Beautiful collage! Nancy

Carol said...

Joey your first photo is so gorgeous ... so soft and other worldly... the light... just stunning! All of your photos have a quality of light that is beautiful.

Rob (ourfrenchgarden) said...

Chrysanthemums are absoluely the flower for November.

Their colour is everywhere with All souls day.

Gail said...

Perfect flower for this month! The gray days that will happen soon need the lovely pinkness of this mum! As I type this Joey, I can see your golden leaves montage from last post...luscious! Right now November is beautiful, with a fine blue sky and warm sunshine. gail

Anonymous said...

Hi Joey, this is too great! I need a nice dessert for Thanksgiving beside pumpkin pie, have to make that or there will be a revolt by the hungry hoardes. This one is getting copied and saved. I do love everything about apricots, my favorite color too, like the mum. :-)

joey said...

Your words are a delight, Carol. Happy weekend dear new gardening friend!

Thanks Rob ~ I love November and though not a huge lover of mums, when color wanes, appreciate their vibrant gift!

Glad you are enjoying November, Gail, one of my favorite months. Young Son, a blessed autumn gift to 10/11 yr older sister/brother, was born on Nov 1st (my birthday follows later in the month). November to me a 'golden' month where gardeners tuck not only gardens but memories to bed :)

joey said...

Oh dear Nancy ... thank you! Delighted to see you posting again ... it's been way too long :)

Rose said...

I do love mums, Joey! At this time of year I am happy to see them in any color.

I am still chuckling at the quote by Emily--that has to be the funniest thing she ever wrote:) And apricot mousse...I love apricots, and this sounds like heaven!

joey said...

Honestly Rose, I agree ... I searched for Nov quotes and scratched my head posting this. But I do love apricots and these mum photos seemed to agree :)

Kate/High Altitude Gardening said...

What a lovely soft shade of pink... That's a favorite color in my meadow garden.

That dessert recipe looks pretty irresistible too! :))

donna said...

I subscribed to Southern Living magazine for many years for delicious recipes just like Apricot Mousse. I luv anything apricot. Over the years, I've owned many, many of the SL cookbooks, too.

I never hear anyone say Chrysanthemum anymore. It's always just Mum.

Joey, you sure know how to give us a pretty post.

joey said...

Hard color not not too like, Kate, as is the dessert (if you love apricots)! Bet your meadow garden is awesome :)

How sweet, Donna, thank you! I think perhaps mum is not only easier to say but sounds more garden friendly (wish the smell was more nose friendly :)

Catherine said...

Gorgeous Mum captures Joey~ Gorgeous pinks! I love the first photo, and another recipe to tempt the taste buds!
Hope you are enjoying a beautiful weekend!!

joey said...

Hi dear Cat, and thank you. It's been a memorable weekend (sad & happy). Closing my sister's estate plus entertaining my daughter's old high school friends. Coming and going from one spectrum to the next, I'm experiencing life 'as good as it gets'! (As I write from the lake, the loons are yodeling ... perhaps bidding adieu on their way south for the winter :)