Sunday, December 10, 2017

Weekend Round-Up Part 2

Emily Elizabeth Dickinson (December 10, 1830 – May 15, 1886) was an American poet . Born in Amherst, Massachusetts to a successful family with strong community ties, she lived a mostly introverted and reclusive life returning to her family's house in Amherst after a few short years at an academy. Emily was thought of as an eccentric by the locals. She became known for her penchant for white clothing and her reluctance to greet guests or, later in life, even leave her room. Most of her friendships were therefore carried out by correspondence.

While Dickinson was a prolific private poet, fewer than a dozen of her nearly eighteen hundred poems were published during her lifetime. The work that was published during her lifetime was usually altered significantly by the publishers to fit the conventional poetic rules of the time. Dickinson's poems are unique for the era in which she wrote; they contain short lines, typically lack titles, and often use slant rhyme as well as unconventional capitalization and punctuation. Many of her poems deal with themes of death and immortality, two recurring topics in letters to her friends.
A Book
by Emily Dickinson
There is no frigate like a book
To take us lands away,
Nor any coursers like a page
Of prancing poetry.
This traverse may the poorest take
Without oppress of toll;
How frugal is the chariot
That bears a human soul! 

Easy Christmas Trifles are a perfect sweet treat to mark special occasions. Trifles are like secret weapons that are especially handy during the holiday season when you need easy desserts that can feed a crowd.
Some Ever Ready favorites include:
Low Calorie Raspberry Amaretto Chocolate Trifle 

This has been my most popular pinned recipe on Pinterest 2017

Mixed Berry Trifle
This holiday season I'll be serving up an easy Christmas Trifle made with red velvet cake mix, pistachio pudding and whip cream from All Thats Jas site. Here's a sneak peek at the recipe 
Christmas Trifle
My glass compote is ready 
While trifles can be calorie busters and splurges set aside for holiday entertaining think about adding some low calorie meals for the upcoming holiday weeks try 
   Strawberry Spinach Crunch Salad 
Cook's Notes: Chilled cooked chicken added would elevate this side to a main meal. 
Recipe adapted from
Salad Ingredients:
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
  • 1 (3 oz) packages ramen (seasoning discarded)
  • 1- 10 oz baby spinach or combination of spinach and romaine
  • 1 lb fresh strawberries , hulled and sliced
  • 1 cup red onion sliced into small rings 
  • 4 oz goat cheese , crumbled

Honey-Red Wine Vinaigrette
  • 1/3 cup honey 
  • 1/3 cup red wine vinegar, Cranberry Pear Balsamic, Pomegranate-Quince Balsamic or White Raspberry Balsamic
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 1/8 tsp salt
For the dressing:
  • Combine all dressing ingredients in a mason jar with a lid or blender. Shake to blend well. Taste and adjust ingredients. Chill and allow flavors to meld while preparing salad.
For the salad:
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spread almonds onto one side of a rimmed baking sheet then break ramen into small pieces onto opposite side of baking sheet. Toast in preheated oven until almonds are golden brown, about 5 - 9 minutes, tossing once halfway through (if the almonds start toasting faster then the ramen just pour the almonds into a bowl and continue to toast the ramen until its just lightly golden). Let cool.
  • Mix almonds and ramen together. There will be extra to use another time when making a salad. 
  • In a salad bowl gently toss together spinach, strawberries, red onion slices, mixture of toasted almonds and ramen. Add goat cheese and give it another light toss. Pour dressing over top and serve immediately after adding dressing (or plate and add dressing to individual portions).
Food Gifts
Chicken with Cider and Apples
Pistachio Dark Chocolate Pretzel Bark 
Shrimp, Avocado Tomato Crostini

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