Thursday, March 06, 2008


" Forsythia is pure joy. There is not an ounce, not a glimmer of sadness or even knowledge in forsythia. Pure, undiluted, untouched joy. "

GARDENING TIP: Buckle your galoshes ... grab a pail and pruning shears and trudge through the snow. Snip forsythia branches all the way to the main stem. Back inside, fill bucket with cold water and let rest 24 hours. Tomorrow, snip ends and arrange in container or vase, stripping leaves and buds below water line. Bursting buds will appear in a week or two.


~ Enjoy citrus while still at its peak ... delightful salad for lunch or light supper

1 large head romaine
bunch of watercress
2 large wedge-sliced avocados dipped in freshly squeezed orange juice
2 large wedge-sliced red or green pears dipped in freshly squeezed orange juice
2 oranges, peeled and sectioned
3-6 sliced cooked chicken breasts
(gently poach in fresh orange juice, water, a bit of white wine & tarragon)
toasted almonds or pistachios

1 Tbsp. freshly squeezed orange juice
6 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp. wine vinegar
pinch salt & freshly ground pepper

  • Combine orange freshly squeezed orange juice, olive oil, wine vinegar, salt & pepper in screw-top jar & shake vigorously.
  • Gently toss watercress & romaine in salad bowl. Place on individual chilled serving plates. Artfully arrange avocados, pears, orange segments & sliced chicken. Splash with vinaigrette. Sprinkle with cracked pepper and top with toasted almonds or pistachios. (Serves 3-6)


~ from Scones, Muffins & Tea Cakes

3 cups flour
1 Tbsp. sugar
2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, chilled & cut into 1/2-inch slices
1/2 cup pitted Kalamata olives, sliced in thirds
2 tsp. finely chopped fresh rosemary
2 tsp. grated lemon zest
1 cup buttermilk
1 egg beaten with 1 Tbsp. cold water - for egg wash
2 tsp. coarse sea salt

  • Preheat oven to 400-degrees.
  • Lightly grease baking sheet and set aside. In large bowl, stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda & salt. With tips of fingers, blend butter into flour mixture until it resembles coarse cornmeal. Stir in olives, rosemary & lemon zest. Make a well in center and dd buttermilk. Mix until well blended with fork. Gather dough into ball and divide in half. On lightly floured board, roll into 2 circles (1/2-in. thick). Brush each with egg wash and sprinkle each with 1 tsp. of sea salt. With sharp knife, cut each circle into 6 triangle-shaped wedges.
  • Bake scones on baking sheet for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. (12 scones)


Melanie Chopay said...

Mmmm, I don't know what's better. Your delicious recipes or your stunning forsythias! I know I've got to give that orange vinaigrette a try.

joey said...

Thank you, melanie. Until the weather breaks and I can work in my 'outside' garden, it's an uplifting salad to eat on my 'indoor' garden sunporch surrounded by 8 inches of snow ;)

Katarina said...

How I wish I had a bush of Forsythia! Lovely pictures!
/Katarina at Roses and stuff

The Weathered Pane said...

Me, too! We don't have forsythia here.... But I have fond memories growing up in Oregon and my mom always forced stems. I'm forcing Blueberry branches! I'll use it for my Easter tree. Your pictures are so stunning, Joey. Are these all of your place? The blooming cherry tree (or whatever it is). Some day I want to visit Mackinac Island when the lilac trees are in bloom; one of my favorite trees. And any time you want to visit Juneau, just let me know! You've not mentioned your sister lately, how is she doing? Nancy

joey said...

Thank you, Nancy ... the photos are all here except for the magnolia tree that is just down the street (taken last spring). Mackinac Island is a favorite of mine. I have many photos posted on my blog from last June when the lilacs were in bloom ... a feast for the eye and nose. Check out last June archives and do plan on visiting ... let me know! Thanks for inquiring about my sister who is living with us and has a long road ahead. Now legally blind following her horrific illness, my days are filled helping her move forward. My heart aches for her but we are following every avenue possible to guide her to an independent life. Stay warm ... spring is right around the corner (I hope);)