Wednesday, March 18, 2009


"All through the long winter I dream of my garden. On the first warm day of spring I dig my fingers deep into the soft earth. I can feel its energy, and my spirits soar."
~ Helen Hayes

~ Joyful spring pansy faces
~ 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)

Note: Also great with shrimp

~ 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)


Roses and Lilacs said...

That orange vinaigrette sounds wonderful. Easy to make too. I'll skip the avocados.

Gail said...

Joey, They do have the prettiest faces! I found one today that is the closest blue to matching my kitchen tile...a fine cobalt blue...but when you really look at them there is an iridescent quality that is like a fine watercolor. Thank you for this new vinaigrette...I do think the orange will be a great change from lemon or basalmic vinegar. gail

Anonymous said...

Your salad with the orange dressing sounds delicious and colourful!
Love the gay pansies!

Brenda Pruitt said...

My husband loves scones. And I'm not a baker. Wish you were here to bake him some!

joey said...

You can skip the avocados and not hurt my feelings, Marnie. Let's just enjoy spring :)

Hi Gail ~ I'm with you loving cobalt blue. Since we don't use any pesticides in the garden, I delight in blue-face pansies that we not only garnish my flow blue plates with but ... eat!

Welcome Ronell and thank you. I have been a fan of your delicious site for ages ... good food, good family/friends, good life!

Fly me in Brenda! Would delight in joining you in your 'outside' room!

beckie said...

When I read the quote, I thought that's exactly the feeling of a gardener. Nothing quite as satisfying is there?

This vinaigrette sounds like it will taste so fresh. Unlike Marnie, I would use the avacodos. :}

The pansys are so delightful. Some are smiling, some seem surprised and a couple look a little grouchy. Thanks for such a pretty post.

joey said...

Thanks Beckie ~(I'm an avacodo nut)and the vinaigrette is fresh tasting! I've got a bad case of 'spring fever'. Played basketball & wiffle ball with the grandboys and grilled out ... heavenly! And thank you sweet pansies ... it was a time-consuming shoot on my sun porch but at least they stood still!

bg_garden said...

Oh the ingredients to the scone recipe is on my shopping list for tomorrow. Thank you for sharing these recipes. Wasn't the past few days wonderful. Looks like we might be back to spring in the midwest tomorrow.
Always a wonderful show of flowers at your blog Joey!!! THANK YOU for inspiring!

Shady Gardener said...

Hi Joey, Here I am copying recipes again!! Now, if I'd only head for the grocery store, purchase all the ingredients I need, and Stay Home more often, we'd eat Very Well!! I love all those little pansy faces. It reminds me of "crowds of daffodils." :-)

Anonymous said...

Beautiful pansies and a nice Spring recipe to go along with it. I'll be by here tomorrow as I'm looking for a yummy recipe using sun dried tomatoes. I want to fix a pasta salad for this Saturday. Do you have one? I want to put it in a pretty glass bowl. I'm having a family get together. 4 generations of fun. The 4th generation is my grand dog but she counts doesn't she?

Nutty Gnome said...

Ooaah, your recipes make me drool Joey! I adore avocados, so anything tha contains them has got to be good - and I just have to go make those scones....!

joey said...

Thanks Bren ... yes, the weather has been delightful but now back to normal, which is fine since I know spring will arrive tomorrow :) Enjoy the scones!

Hi Shady ~ LOL ... sometimes it's simply fun reading recipes! Pansies have been a favorite since I was a child. I include them extensively in my garden with thoughts of a very special person in my life.

You must be reading my mind, Anna! Friday is always a seafood/fish entry and tomorrow's is salmon with sun-dried tomatoes! How about one of these 2 family favorite pasta salads (key name of recipe in my search blog). Either one would look lovely in a glass bowl and everyone loves them:


Hi Nutty ~ hope these goodies will provide the proper nutrients and extra-energy needed for you and Himself to tackle Mt Fuji this weekend :)

Cindy Garber Iverson said...

You're going to think this is silly but those adorable little pansy faces have made it impossible for me to focus on your recipes. I'm always distracted when I see pansies or violas.


Anonymous said...

Thank you and I would love it if you would email them to me. I knew you would have some pretty and tasty ones for me.

joey said...

Not silly at all, Cindy, I love them also. Warm wishes for a lovely Spring!

Anna ~ the recipes are on the way :) Enjoy and Happy Spring!

Anonymous said...

Always a mistake to read blogs with recipes this close to dinner time! My mouth is watering!

Kylee Baumle said...

Wow, Joey! It's that pansy time of year and you've shown some fabulous faces of them!

joey said...

Hi Susan ... good, mission accomplished :) Happy Spring!

Thanks Kylee ... I'm smitten myself. Pansies make me smile :)

Kerri said...

Mmmm..I love citrus! It all sounds wonderful, Joey.
Happy Vernal Equinox! Happy Spring! At last :)

joey said...

It's here, Kerri! Let's rejoice and be happy :)

Unknown said...

Hi there, Joey! It's been a while. Nice pics and recipes. I just wanted to let you know that we have a new widget at, I thought you might want to try it out. Check it out here! Let me know what you think of the new widget. Thanks! said...

Hello Joey;

My "after the winter" weight loss program isn't going all that well so I have been avoiding The Village Voice since it makes me head to the store for ingredients to follow up on your latest recipes. Just the same I am going to try this one and also the Classic Maple Salad.

At our nursery we take care of lunch for whomever is working that day. Some days things just don't work well and we send someone to the store for sandwiches or salads but usually we take care of things and salads are quite common. We have a special salad dressing that no one has complained about seeing yet but I've been looking for new options. I admit I am loyal to Vermont maple syrup from my days of lifting buckets off trees and carrying them to horse drawn sleds. Our sugaring season has been incredible this year and with all the new technology, we're still making good quality syrup.

I've been bad about our two blogs while renewing our website. Give it a look at when you get a chance.

George Africa
The Vermont Gardener

joey said...

Thank you, Desmone ~ I'll check it out!

Dear George ~ so good to hear your spring voice and know you survived winter :) I'm very impressed with your new website! Wishing you a fruitful spring ... and someday ... someday ... we'll have a taste test ~ Vermont vs. Michigan maple syrup :)