valentine

valentine

December 31, 2009

Recipe for a Happy New Year

Take twelve whole months,
Clean them thoroughly of all bitterness, hate and jealousy,
Make them just as fresh and clean as possible.

Now cut into twenty-eight, thirty, or thirty-one different parts,
But don’t make up the whole batch at once.
Prepare it one day at a time out of these ingredients.

Mix well into each day one part of faith,
One part of patience, one part of courage,
And one part of work.

Add to each day one part of hope,
Faithfulness, generosity, and kindness.
Blend together with one part prayer,
One part meditation and one good deed.

Season the whole with a dash of good spirits,
A sprinkle of fun, a pinch of play,
and a cupful of good humor.

Pour all of this into a vessel of love.
Cook thoroughly over radiant joy,
Garnish with a smile,
And serve with quietness, unselfishness,
And cheerfulness.

You are bound to have a Happy New Year!



Have a great weekend. How can you miss - you're in Winnipeg!

December 29, 2009

Cookie Recipe

1 cup of water
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup of sugar
1 tsp salt
1 cup of brown sugar
lemon juice
4 large eggs
1 cup nuts
2 cups of dried fruit
1 bottle Crown Royal/Whiskey/Rum


- Take a large bowl, sample the liquor to make sure it is of the highest quality.

- Turn on the electric mixer... beat one cup of butter in a large fluffy bowl.

- Check the liquor again, pour one level cup and drink.

- Add one teaspoon of sugar... beat again.

- Turn off the mixer thingy.

- At this point it's best to make sure the liquor is still okay, try another cup... just in case.

- Break 2 leggs and add to the bowl and chuck in the cup of dried fruit.

- Pick the frigging fruit off the floor...

- Mix on the turner.

- If the fried druit gets stuck in the beaterers just pry it loose with a dewscriver.

- Sample the liquor to check for consisticis isity.

- Next, sift two cups of salt, or something.... who giveshz a sheet.

- Check the liquor.

- Now shift the lemon juice and strain your nuts.

- Add one table.

- Add a spoon of ar, or somefin.... ah whatever you can find.

- Greash the oven.

- Turn the cake tin 360 degrees and try not to fall over.

- Don't forget to beat off the turner.

- Finally, throw the bowl through the window.

- Finish the bottle of liquor.

- Make sure to put the stove in the dishwasher.


Happy Baking!


Have a great day. How can you miss - you're in Winnipeg!

December 27, 2009

Ring in the New Year

Want a free, fun New Year's Eve? There'll be a New Year's Eve Concert for Hope and Peace at Westminster United Church on December 31st at 6:00 p.m. Ring in the New Year with Andre Macasaet, Bandaline, Rusalka Ukrainian Dance Ensemble, Jazz on Wheels and Fred Penner. Tickets are required and are available December 14th at Assiniboine Credit Union branches.


Okay, it's fun to go out during the holidays and to get together with your nearest and dearest. But, if you're using your car to get around, don't forget that the overnight parking ban is in effect.

Any car parked on a snow route between 2:00 a.m. and 6:00 a.m. may be ticketed.

Stay tuned to local media for imformation on temporary Residential Ovenight Parking Bans following heavy snowfall.

For more information call 775-SNOW or register for automatic e mail notification of winter parking bans.


The Forks is one of those places that people either visit regular or keep meaning to see.

Come on down.

Every Tuesday is Seniors' Day at The Forks. Special discounts are available at participating Forks Market merchants. If you get there at 9:45 a.m., you can join a low impact fitness class at the Tower Atrium. Just bring a bottle of water and your runners.

Check out the Forks Market for their holiday hours.


Have a great day. How can you miss - you're in Winnipeg!

December 24, 2009

Would Santa Ever Find Me? (part 6 - by Margaret Ullrich)

After Mass, when we were leaving the church, I saw a pale cloud in the sky. It looked long and thin, with a sort of bump on one end. For a moment I thought it looked like Santa and his sleigh with eight tiny reindeer.

I kept looking at that cloud. It seemed to follow us from St. Leo’s to Uncle Des’ house, where we had panettone.

When we left, the cloud was still in the sky. I watched it from the car. The cloud followed us from Corona to College Point.


I had never noticed clouds before. Did clouds always follow people from one town to another? Was it really a cloud? Sister had told us that Santa had millions of helpers. They were tiny people called elves. Could that cloud have been an elf picking up the letter from La Befana?


Christmas morning, Pop was eating breakfast while Ma was cleaning Barbara. Ma sent me to the basement to get some dry diapers that were hanging by the furnace.


Being a big sister wasn’t much fun. I pulled down two diapers.


Then I noticed some lumps by the furnace. I thought some clothes had fallen off the line. I walked toward the furnace to pick them up. I hoped they hadn’t gotten dirty. Ma was tired and wouldn’t want to wash them again.


But the lumps weren’t clothes.


They were boxes.

They were wrapped.

They were presents!

They were for me!!


Santa had found me.


Have a Merry Christmas. How can you miss - you're in Winnipeg!

December 22, 2009

Would Santa Ever Find Me? (part 5 - by Margaret Ullrich)

The lebkuchen , zimtsterne, springerle, pfeffernuesse, pfefferkuchen and jam-filled spitzbuben settled like a leaden weight in my stomach. It was all just too much change for a five-year-old to cope with in one year: a new sister, Kindergarten and now Santa Claus. Would the changes never end?


In Kindergarten we learned about God the Father, about how we should pray to Him and tell Him what we needed. I didn’t need another Father. I figured if my Pop was always so busy working, this Father who took care of everything and everybody in the whole wide world would really never have time for me.

I heard my classmates talk about how their Grandmas were always able to fix things in their homes. Both my Grandmas were in Malta.


I needed a Grandma.


The next time we went to Corona, Nonni diNoto saw that something was troubling me. She asked me to help her in the kitchen. There she asked me what was wrong. I told her about Santa Claus and explained that he was in charge of Christmas in College Point. I didn’t know if La Befana would be allowed to visit me there anymore. Nonni listened patiently as I explained how Christmas was handled in College Point.

She repeated the main points. “Santa Claus. A letter.”
I nodded.
“I fix. I write Befana. She give Santa. No hard feelings. Christmas come.”


I had my doubts. Nonni had never been to College Point. Maybe nobody ever had to change from La Befana to Santa Claus. Maybe Christmas was lost forever, like some of the packages we'd never gotten from Malta.


On Christmas Eve we again gathered in Corona at Uncle Des and Aunt Betty’s home. We had the Christmas Eve dinner. Then we went to St. Leo’s for the Midnight Mass. Everything was familiar. Latin and Italian.


Why couldn’t we have stayed there?


Have a great day. How can you miss - you're in Winnipeg!

December 20, 2009

Would Santa Ever Find Me? (part 4 - by Margaret Ullrich)

My friends’ homes had interesting sights and smells, too. On the tables there were bunte tallers: dishes filled with nuts, candies, cookies and fruit. The stoves had bubbling pots filled with bratwursts and potatoes.


My friend Elise invited me to supper. She told me to smear the bratwurst with the spicy mustard. The green beans and carrots were familiar. The bread was dark. I was used to Italian bread and Maltese hobtz. But after I put butter on the rye bread I had to admit it was good, too. I’d had mashed potatoes before, but I’d never had hot potato salad. I was curious about how Elise’s Mom made the potato salad. It was sweet, spicy and tart. Elise’s Mom smiled and blushed when I told her it was so good. “Ach, it’s only potatoes.”


After Thanksgiving, Sister brought a box of kringeln to class. The kringeln were almond studded sugar cookies which had been twisted into figure eights. We helped her hang them on our classroom Christmas tree. It was beautiful and the cookies smelled wonderful. We all oohed and aahed. Then everyone sang a song, O Christmas Tree. I just smiled and silently moved my mouth.

Then Sister told us to gather around her. She was going to read us a story, The Visit from St. Nicholas. Sister showed us the pictures in the large thin book. They were drawings of Santa Claus and his eight tiny reindeer. Sister said Santa was a “right jolly old elf.”

My friends were delighted. I was confused. I had never heard any of this before. There wasn’t any mention of La Befana.

Santa was supposed to slide down every house’s chimney and land in a fireplace. We didn’t have a fireplace. We had a huge, oil-burning furnace in the basement. Ma hung our stockings, along with all the other wet laundry, on a clothesline near the furnace. The furnace made awful noises and had fire in it. If Santa landed in it he’d fry like a strufoli. That would end Christmas forever. I didn’t think Santa would take such a risk for a total stranger.


Oh, boy... I was in big trouble. The lovely cookies felt like a giant rock in my stomach.


Sister talked about Santa checking his list of good little girls and boys. Santa had a list? I knew we were on the Registered Aliens’ list. Every January a man on the television reminded Ma to fill out green cards so that the American Government would know where we were. If we didn’t fill out the cards we’d be in big trouble. We could either be sent to jail or back to Malta.

How could I get on Santa’s list? Could Santa get my name from the Registered Aliens’ list? Did I need to fill out another card?


The afternoon went from bad to worse. Sister told us we could put our letters to Santa in the special mailbox in the classroom. A letter? What language did Santa speak - English or German? He’d never heard from me. I wasn’t on his list. What could I say? “Hi, you don’t know me, but I’d like some toys.”

I’d never written a letter to La Befana. She just gave me toys. When we had moved to College Point, Ma had to fill change of address forms. Was there a change of address form for Santa? Could La Befana still visit me? Did Mr. Santa Claus want to shoot La Befana because she had come to College Point?


Oh, boy... I was in big trouble.


Have a great day. How can you miss - you're in Winnipeg!

December 17, 2009

Would Santa Ever Find Me? (part 3 - by Margaret Ullrich)

After Barbara was born we didn’t have time to go to Corona very often. It was easier to walk to the local church, St. Fidelis, instead of driving to Corona to go to St. Leo’s. Even though Pop didn’t have to commute every day, he didn’t have any time to waste. He was working a lot of overtime.


I missed seeing the rest of my family.


That September I started Kindergarten in St. Fidelis School. Some of the good Sisters had wanted to travel and meet exotic heathens in far away places.

Well, one Sister almost got her wish. I was the first Maltese child she’d ever seen. College Point had been settled by German and Irish families. It was time for me to learn about America through their eyes.


By mid-October my classmates started bringing samples of their mothers’ holiday baking to school. They told me their attics were filled with apple slices which had been strung like beads on a white thread and hung to dry in their attics. Their mothers also had pillow cases filled with cookies hanging from nails in the attic. My friends said their mothers did this so that the cookies would be aged and perfect by Christmas.

I loved the idea of an attic packed with bags filled with cookies. I had never been in an attic. Our house had a store front, but we didn’t use the attic. Nobody I’d known in Corona used their attics, either.


Some of my classmates brought in samples of their mothers’ cookies, the cookies that didn't have to age. I brought some biscotti. My friends were polite and ate the dry, double-baked bread. Then we ate the pfefferkuchen, spitzbuben, sweet honey lebkuchen, and almond pfeffernuesse. My favorites were zimtsterne, cinnamon stars decorated with almonds, and spitzbuben, sandwiched cookies with jam peeking through three holes in the top cinnamon cookie. My friends called them little rogues.


Anise was a popular holiday spice in College Point. It was used in the springerle and the peppernuts. When I told Ma about anise, she said she used it, too, but she didn’t use as much in her cookies.

Pop said, “If you like the taste of anise so much, you’d probably like to drink anisette.”

Ma didn’t think that was a very funny thing to say. I knew about the anisette liqueur. Sometimes Uncle Des put some in his coffee when it was really cold outside. He said it helped him feel warmer. But, when I asked him for a taste, he said it wasn’t for little girls.


There were also special holiday rewards. When I helped Sister put away the puzzles, she gave me a small marzipan pig, wrapped in cellophane.

I’d never seen a marzipan pig before. Neither had my Ma. When I brought the marzipan pig home, Ma put it in the china cabinet. I was sad when it started to get moldy. We didn’t know I was supposed to eat it.


As Christmas approached, the windows of the German bakeries were filled with the most beautiful cookies I’d ever seen. They were in all kinds of shapes: stars, angels, animals and wreaths. They were decorated with coconut, jam, icing and tiny silver balls. There were also holiday breads: glistening loaves of gugelhupf, a sweet bread filled with raisins and almonds, and fatschenkinder, small loaves that looked like babies wrapped in swaddling clothes.

The stollen reminded me of panettone. They both were rich butter breads, filled with raisins, almonds and citron. I was amazed at what German bakers could do with bread. I thought a German Christmas was beautiful and delicious.


I planned to eat German and Italian holiday food every Christmas for the rest of my life.


Have a great weekend. How can you miss - you're in Winnipeg!

December 15, 2009

Would Santa Ever Find Me? (part 2 - by Margaret Ullrich)

The Christmas Eve dinner was a feast. Fish was traditional. Eel for the parents, bluefish for the children. There was also soup, chicken, pasta and vegetables, followed by ricotta pie, anise biscotti, pizzelle and cuccidati cookies, strufoli, creamy roasted chestnuts and torrone candy.

My favorite was the huge strufoli, a golden mound of tiny doughnut balls covered with honey and multi-colored sprinkles. Nadia’s favorite was the prune cuccidati. Aunt Betty’s Cuccidati were filled cookies that reminded me of fig newtons. Aunt Betty filled the cookies with a mix of prunes, raisins, dates, citron, ground almonds and cinnamon. Aunt Betty also made cuccidati using apricots or dates instead of prunes.


After dinner we played games while our parents talked. Then it was time to walk to St. Leo’s for the Midnight Mass. After Mass we returned to Uncle Des’ for hot chocolate and panettone. Nonni’s panettone was a wonderfully rich bread made with butter, raisins, almonds and citron.


Then Nonni would tell us to look at the manger scene for the surprise. The blessed Bambino, Baby Jesus, had suddenly appeared!


Christmas Eve was a wonderful night. But the big day for us children was January sixth - Epiphany, Old Christmas. The night before we had hung our socks and gone to sleep expecting La Befana to fill them with treats and toys. In the old days, Nonni told us, the children would place their shoes on the fireplace hearth for La Befana. But in America we didn’t have a fireplace. Nonni said she liked using the socks since they were cleaner than our shoes.


We knew all about La Befana, a little old lady who had been sweeping her house when the Wise Men suddenly knocked on her door. They had been looking for Baby Jesus and had stopped to ask La Befana for directions. They then invited La Befana to join them. The old woman refused, saying she had work to do. Later that night a shepherd passed by and invited La Befana to come to Bethlehem, but she again said no.

Later that night, when it was dark, a great light and angels appeared in the sky. La Befana realized that the Wise Men weren’t kidding about somebody special being born that night. Broom in hand, La Befana tried to catch up with the Wise Men. She never found them, Bethlehem or Baby Jesus. Every year she searches for Baby Jesus and leaves presents for good little boys and girls.


La Befana took wonderful care of me for four years.


Then, when I was five years old, I was hit with a megadose of change: I got a new baby sister, I started going to school and I got Santa Claus.


A few months before I started school, it was time for my sister to be born. While Ma was in the hospital I stayed with Aunt Betty, Uncle Des and Nadia. It was nice living in Corona again. A few days after Ma went to the hospital, Nonni diNoto took me to the local five and dime. She gave me a quarter.

“Buy for sister.”

I didn’t have any idea what a baby sister would want. I liked watching westerns on television, so I grabbed a toy gun.

“No. Buy rattle.”

A rattle? That sounded boring, but I bought a pink plastic rattle.


In those days children were not allowed to visit anyone in the hospital. When Aunt Betty visited Ma, she gave the rattle to my new sister. I waited outside the hospital and waved to the window of Ma’s room.

When Aunt Betty returned she had a gift from my new sister for me: three fancy pieces of chocolate. Well, wasn’t that nice of my new sister, Barbara. Not as nice as a toy gun, but I thought that maybe that was all Barbara could get from where she’d been.


Maybe having a baby sister wasn’t going to be too bad.


Have a great day. How can you miss - you're in Winnipeg!

December 13, 2009

Would Santa Ever Find Me? (part 1 - by Margaret Ullrich)

At times I really envied my cousin Nadia’s family's rooted past. By the time I was five I’d had enough changes to last a lifetime.


My folks had to learn a lot of new things after they had come to America. For example, in Malta Christmas was celebrated without Christmas trees. Tree shopping was something very new for my parents. But, after their first two American Christmases, Ma was comfortable enough to get her usual real bargains.

We would go to the parking lot where the trees had magically appeared, like the ground beef at the A & P. There we’d browse until we’d found a tree we liked. Ma would quickly switch our chosen tree’s price tag with that of a cheaper tree which no one liked. Then we’d carry the chosen tree to the clerk, who gave us the fish eye as he noticed the fullness of such a ‘good find’. Then he’d sigh and take Ma’s money. The whole deal would be done in ten minutes.

Another American Christmas had begun for us.


In Corona Christmas was a festive season. It began with the first Sunday of Advent, was packed with feastdays of special saints such as St. Barbara on December fourth, and ended on January sixth with a visit from La Befana.

December twenty-fourth was an all-day family affair. At lunchtime we visited Aunt Demi. She was the eldest sister. It was a sign of respect. The visit there was always short. Aunt Demi never let us forget how much she had slaved over the holiday. She had a talent for inducing guilt with a weary ‘Do you know how long I slaved over this dish’ look. Everyone understood. The Aunts knew how many platters of cookies Aunt Demi had in the pantry. We all knew that she was determined to unload every one them.


Maltese desserts are simple: fresh fruit and cheese with an occasional cookie. One Maltese cookie, the biskuttini tar rahal, could be described as hardened library paste with a hint of lemon and a dash of rock hard royal icing. A variation on the biskuttini cuts the sugar by half and replaces the royal icing with a sprinkling of sesame seeds. Both cookies are wonderful teething rings.

Another favorite is the biscotti. The big thrill with a biscotti is seeing how much milk it can suck up before breaking in half and falling into your glass. It’s like eating the sinking Titanic. For the holidays, we borrowed recipes from the Sicilians and made kannoli tar-rikotta (ricotta in a fried pastry tube) or a qassata (a sponge cake covered with vanilla custard).


For our main Christmas Eve festivities, we gathered at Uncle Des and Aunt Betty’s home. A whole corner of their living room was filled with Nonni DiNoto’s manger scene. St. Francis would’ve loved what Nonni DiNoto had done with his presepio idea.

Nonni DiNoto’s daughter Betty had married Pop’s brother Des. Then, two years after we had arrived in America, Nonni's son Salvatore had married Pop’s sister Helen. So, Nonni was a double Grandma in their families.

Since all my grandparents were in Malta, Nonni treated me as a grandchild, too.


Nonni’s manger scene was not just a simple shed with Mary, Joseph, three kings and one shepherd standing around Baby Jesus. Nonni had a complete village with houses, shrubbery, trees, hills, paths, ponds and animals. There were people walking around just minding their own business and doing real things. Some of the figures were really old and we couldn’t play with them.

But each year Nonni added something new: an old woman carrying a basket of eggs, a farmer carrying a head of cabbage, a man carrying a bundle of wood for a fire to keep the baby warm. There were rich people, too, walking through Nonni's Bethlehem and looking very important.


Nonni’s manger scene was better than any Manhattan Fifth Avenue store's window display.


Have a great day. How can you miss - you're in Winnipeg!

December 10, 2009

Healthy Holidays and Double Chocolate Brownies

The holiday season plays hell with everybody's healthy eating habits. What with old family favorites and old family guilts, it's hard to resist another serving... or two.


Here are a few hints to keep you on track:

Keep your eye on portion sizes: Your girlfriends are right - size does matter.

Plan ahead of time: Try to visualize the whole event's menu. Go easy with the appetizers and the drinks. Remember to leave lots of room for the main course and the desserts.

Go for Color: Head for the fresh veggies and the fibre-packed hummus dip.

Go for the Crunch: Reach for the crispy pita triangles, flat bread and melba toast. Top with salsa, bean dips or bruschetta for a lower calorie appetizer.

Switch drinks: Choose a light beer, dry wine or liquor served with diet pop or soda water. Alcoholic beverages can dehydrate you, making you reach for another drink. Alternate the alcohol with sparkling mineral water with slices of lime or lemon.

Keep Active: Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate activity each day. Do something you enjoy.


For more healthy eating tips, call Nor'West Co-op's Registered Dietitians at 940-2020.


Got some e mails reminding me I haven't mentiond chocolate in quite a while.

Sorry about that. Chocolate goes well with the holidays, too. And what is better than chocolate? Double chocolate, naturally.


DOUBLE CHOCOLATE BROWNIES

greased 9 inch pan
preheat oven to 325º
bake 35 min.

combine
3/4 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
----
combine in a medium saucepan
1/3 cup butter
3/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons water
bring just to a boil
remove from heat
----
add
1 cup chocolate morsels
1 teaspoon vanilla
stir until smooth
----
add one at a time
2 eggs
beat well
gradually blend in flour mixture
----
stir in
1 cup chocolate morsels
1/2 cup chopped nuts
spread in pan
bake


Have a great weekend. How can you miss - you're in Winnipeg!

December 8, 2009

Fun at the Forks

The Forks is one of those places that people either visit regular or keep meaning to see.


Well, come on down.


Local school choirs will be there singing. The singing kids are guaranteed to put everyone in the holiday spirit. Speaking of kids, every Saturday and Sunday until Christmas, from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., you can snap your own photo of them (or other family members or friends) with Santa. Just bring your camera. On December 18th Santa will be communicating in American Sign Language with his special friends.


Every Tuesday is Seniors' Day at The Forks. Special discounts are available at participating Forks Market merchants. If you get there at 9:45 a.m., you can join a low impact fitness class at the Tower Atrium. Just bring a bottle of water and your runners.


The music, fun with Santa and exercise are all free!!


Don't forget to bring a new unwrapped toy to add to the Tower of Toys for the Christmas Cheer Board. If you have an extra toy, bring it to the BED IN with 92 CITI FM. It's a live on-air fundraiser being held from December 9th to 11th, in support of the Salvation Army.


Check out the Forks Market holiday hours. Just so you know, The Forks will be closed on December 25th.


Remember Eaton's Santa Village? It's still here in Winnipeg. While you're in the neighborhood, drop into The Manitoba Children's Museum and revisit your nursery rhyme friends.


Have a great day. How can you miss - you're in Winnipeg!

December 6, 2009

Family Fun and Easy Sugar Cookies

Tired of seeing Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol on TV? How about an old-fashioned dramatic reading. Ron Robinson, Marilyn Maki, Margaux Watt, Gord Leclerc and Carson Nattrass will be reading at Crescent Fort Rouge United Church at 7:30 p.m. on December 11th. Tickets are $10 and are available at McNally Robinson and at the door.


Crescent Fort Rouge United Church will also be presenting Holy Day, Snowy Nights on December 12th at 7:00 p.m. An evening of choral music featuring The Winnipeg Boys Choir, Sandra Boyes, Scot Braun, Lottie Enns-Braun, Cary Denby and the Sisler High School Chamber Choir. Tickets are $5 and are available at the door - under 12 years old are free.


A Jazzy Christmas is more your style? Come to the Muriel Richardson Auditorium at the Winnipeg Art Gallery for a Nat King Cole Christmas. Denzal Sinclaire will be perfoming on December 13th, 2:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Tickets are available at McNally Robinson or call 632-5299.


Catskill wil be performing at the West End Cultural Centre on December 13th at 8:00 p.m. Free admission.


Remember Wayne Newton in Dead Ringer? Okay, if you'd like to see this rare 1981 episode of the TV show Vega$ come to Into the Music on December 14th at 4:30 p.m. The screening will be followed by an hour of music. Hey, it's a free show.


Want a free, fun New Year's Eve? There'll be a New Year's Eve Concert for Hope and Peace at Westminster United Church on December 31st at 6:00 p.m. Ring in the New Year with Andre Macasaet, Bandaline, Rusalka Ukrainian Dance Ensemble, Jazz on Wheels and Fred Penner. Tickets are required and are available December 14th at Assiniboine Credit Union branches.


Okay, it's fun to go out during the holidays and to get together with your nearest and dearest. But, if you're using your car to get around, don't forget that the overnight parking ban is in effect. Any car parked on a snow route between 2:00 a.m. and 6:00 a.m. may be ticketed. Stay tuned to local media for imformation on temporary Residential Ovenight Parking Bans following heavy snowfall.

For more information call 775-SNOW or register for automatic e mail notification of winter parking bans.


Okay. The kids want holiday cookies and your fancy, Christmas-themed, only-use-once-a-year cookie cutters are in a safe place.

No problem.

These cookies look festive and are just the right size to dunk. All you need is the bottom of a drinking glass - any size, glass, metal or plastic.

If all your glasses are in a safe place - getting a little paranoid, are we? - then grab a jar or bottle. Flatten, bake and enjoy.


EASY SUGAR COOKIES

grease 3 cookie sheets
preheat oven to 400º
bake 10 min.

in a large bowl combine
2 eggs, beaten
2/3 cup oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoons lemon extract
(if you prefer orange, almond, anise, rum, brandy
extract or totally vanilla, fine - they're your cookies)
----
blend in
3/4 cup (minus 1 tablespoon) sugar
----
sift together
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
add to beaten eggs mixture
----
pour into a medium-sized bowl
1 jar red or green-colored sugar
Scoop cookie dough by teaspoonfuls and drop into
the colored sugar
roll the dough balls around to cover them in sugar
place the dough balls on the cookie sheet
flatten with glass
bake
remove at once and cool on racks


Have a great day. How can you miss - you're in Winnipeg!

December 3, 2009

1930s Dollar Fruitcake (Winnipeg Free Press)

It's that time of year.
 All together now: "Tradition... Tradition..."

During the early 1930s this recipe cost $1 to make.
By 1974...
the cost of those same ingredients had increased to more than $4.
By 1979...
the price passed $8.

Now?
Don't ask. Just enjoy.


1930s DOLLAR FRUITCAKE

Line 9-inch tube pan with greased brown paper or heavy-duty aluminum foil
Preheat oven to 300º

Wash by pouring boiling water over
1 pound sultana raisins
Dry raisins thoroughly between towels.

In a large bowl combine washed raisins with
1/2 pound candied cherries, halved
2 Cups mixed peel
1/2 Cup blanched almonds, chopped
1/2 Cup walnuts, chopped

Sift together
2 Cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
Sift again over the fruits and nuts, mixing until each piece is coated.

Cream
1 Cup butter

Gradually blend in
1 Cup sugar

Add, one at a time
3 eggs
Beat well after each addition.

Combined
1/4 Cup fruit juice (orange, apple, grape or juice from canned fruit)
1/2 teaspoon brandy flavoring or almond extract

Stir flour / fruit mixture alternately with combined liquids into the beaten eggs mixture.

Spoon batter into prepared pan.
Bake 2 1/4 to 2 3/4 hours (until cake starts to pull away from side of pan)

Let cake cool in pan on rack.
Remove from pan.
Wrap well and store in airtight container.


Merry Christmas!

December 1, 2009

Lectures and Concerts

Want a no-cost break from shopping?

The Downtown Library is more than just a building full of books. On Wednesdays, from September to March, their Reader Services Department is hosting a lecture series featuring teachers and researchers from the University of Winnipeg. On Thursdays the library is providing a showcase for Manitoba's musicians.


Their next lecture and concert features:

Dec. 2 - Prof. Pauline Pearson, UWinnipeg Psychology, talking about Visual Working Memory

Dec. 3 - Wuchu Manitoba Dragon & Lion Dance - expressing Chinese culture, legend, myth and elite skills through acrobatics and dance


Dec. 9 - Prof. Christopher Wiebe, UWinnipeg Chemistry, talking about The World through the Eyes of the Neutron

Dec. 10 - Come to the Cabaret - a variety ensemble led by chanteuse Meaghan Reimer


It's all free, but seating is limited. The events are from 12:10 - 12:50 PM, so bring your lunch and come early to the Carol Shields Auditorium.

The schedule is subject to change without notice. To confirm, or learn about future events call the Reader Services at 986-8386 or dpilon@winnipeg.ca


Wondering what to do with the kids after the Big Day? Check out the Children's and Teen Programs at the Winnipeg Public Library. There's lots happening there, too.


Did I mention it's all free?


Have a great day. How can you miss - you're in Winnipeg!