Saturday, December 21, 2013

Embrace the Light

Today is the Winter Solstice, the shortest day and longest night of the year in the northern hemisphere. For thousands of years, the winter solstice has played a significant role in religion, spirituality and celebratory festivities. While it's certainly the day with the least amount of sunlight, let as look forward to the the weeks ahead that become brighter. These lyrics embrace the dance of life. Enjoy every step as we sing and dance toward spring.
"Lord of the Dance" is a hymn with words written by English songwriter Sydney Carter in 1963. He borrowed the tune from the American Shaker song "Simple Gifts." The hymn is widely performed in English-speaking congregations and assemblies.
It follows the idea of a traditional English carol, "Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day," which tells the gospel story in the first person voice of Jesus of Nazareth with the device of portraying Jesus' life and mission as a dance.
Lord Of The Dance
I danced in the morning when the world was young
I danced in the moon and the stars and the sun
I came down from heaven and I danced on the earth
At Bethlehem I had my birth 

Dance, dance, wherever you may be
I am the lord of the dance, said he
And I lead you all, wherever you may be
And I lead you all in the dance, said he 

I danced for the scribes and the Pharisees
They wouldn't dance, they wouldn't follow me
I danced for the fishermen James and John
They came with me so the dance went on 

Dance, dance, wherever you may be
I am the lord of the dance, said he
And I lead you all, wherever you may be
And I lead you all in the dance, said he 

I danced on the Sabbath and I cured the lame
The holy people said it was a shame
They ripped, they stripped, they hung me high
Left me there on the cross to die 

Dance, dance, wherever you may be
I am the lord of the dance, said he
And I lead you all, wherever you may be
And I lead you all in the dance, said he 

I danced on a Friday when the world turned black
It's hard to dance with the devil on your back
They buried my body, they thought I was gone
But I am the dance, and the dance goes on 

Dance, dance, wherever you may be
I am the lord of the dance, said he
And I lead you all, wherever you may be
And I lead you all in the dance, said he 

They cut me down and I leapt up high
I am the life that will never, never die
I'll live in you if you'll live in me
I am the Lord of the dance, said he 

Dance, dance, wherever you may be
I am the lord of the dance, said he
And I lead you all, wherever you may be
And I lead you all in the dance, said he
_____________________________________________________________
Eggnog Cheesecake Bars
Cook's notes: If you still have some baking to do try these wonderful creamy eggnog bars. The recipe was quite easy. It comes from Midwest Living Magazine November/December 2013. 
In this photo I made a Gingersnap cookie crust as an alternative to a graham cracker crust and added crumbled almonds.I really liked the crust which was a nice contrast to the flavor of eggnog/cheesecake. 
Ingredients:

  • 2 cups graham cracker crumbs or gingersnap cookie crumbs-reserve 1/4 cup crumbs
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 12 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 3/4 cup eggnog
  • 1 tablespoon bourbon or rum (optional)
Directions
  • For the crust, combine the 2 cups graham cracker or cookie crumbs, 2 tablespoons sugar, ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg in a medium bowl. Stir in the melted butter with a fork until evenly combined. A food processor or blender can be used for this step
  • Transfer the crumb mixture to an 8 x 8 glass baking pan 
  • Press crumb mixture down flat in an even layer. Bake in a 375 degrees oven for 5 minutes. Remove from oven and reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees 
  • For the filling, in a large mixer bowl, beat cream cheese on high for about 1 minute
  • Add in 1/3 cup sugar, eggnog, egg and bourbon or rum beat until the mixture is light and no lumps remain
  • Pour the filling over the crust in the baking pan. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup crumbs
  • Bake for 28 minutes or until the center is just set. Cool in pan on wire rack for 1 hour
  • Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours before serving. 

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