Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Facinating!

Some of my favorite childhood memories were spent at my Grandmother's house.  Where, up the stairs was my Uncle's room, quietly preserved, as he traveled the world.  At times, my Sister and I would sneak into his room and- Behold! 
A photographic-montage covered every corner of the walls within his room.  Beautiful and dreamy pictures of female icons. 

 Not to mention, books!  Lot's of books, about every juicy, documented detail of their lives!
It was fabulous to be a young lady and literally be transported into another world, a place that both strong and fragile women ruled and their beauty, even within the flaws of their lives -were undeniable. 

I am glad that I secretly entered his room...-many times.  The things I thought about as I looked at the pictures and read their stories have stayed with me to this day, and, as a side note, helped to create the passionate spirit within me. 

Elizabeth R. Taylor
   February 27, 1932 - March 23, 2011

photos via: #1, #2, #3, #4, #5

Monday, March 14, 2011

It's a dirty job but someone's got to do it!


I started composting three years ago because I thought it was a good way to recycle food waste and also get good soil amendment called vermi-compost or worm compost material. The worms turn the scraps and garden waste into a rich form of worm compost through their digestive system. The compost and the compost tea are full of micro-organisms and nutrients.

The compost started out with about 100 worms and now I have so many I would not be able to count them! The worms used are Red Worms: Eisenia Foetida -commonly known as red wiggler, brandling or manure worm. Red worms are the best because they can withstand various conditions.

I feed my worms about once a week. They love coffee grounds most soft vegetable peels and fruit scraps. I usually cut banana peels so they are easier for the worms to digest. They cannot be feed anything acidic such as citrus; lemons, chicken manure, tomatoes and chili. Acidic foods will also unstablize the ph level in your compost. Worms thrive in neutral ph conditions.  Another tip, do not include anything that has been cooked or has grease, no meat- this stuff will attractive rodents to your worm compost.

Each worm contains a male and female organ, so any mature worm from the same species can mate. After mating they produce a capsule containing 20 eggs. A mature compost worm might mate every 7-10 days & produce 4-20 capsules per week, but only 3 capsules will hatch with 4 worms inside. Thus producing 12 baby worms, per mature worm, each week!

For the compost tea; simply add 1-2” of compost to your water can and allow compost and water to steep for a day, mixing occasionally. Then use to water plants. This works as fertilizer and insect repellent.

Take care of your worms and they will take care of your garbage and produce compost. You will notice less bedding and more compost in 3-5months after setting up your worm farm.  This means it is time to harvest. Harvest means removing the compost from the container. It’s like striking gold! Your plants will be so much healthier and you will not believe the results.

To learn more about Worm Composting:






Article and photo via:  Guadalupe Lucio

Sunday, March 13, 2011

BLOG LOVE- First Post Feb 2009



Love
(February 2009)
Just because Valentine’s is over, why should the romance end?
My romance with food began as a small child in the kitchen with my Grandmother.
She was a simple woman whose
small abode was always filled with visitors and family.
My favorite place to be was right next to her in the kitchen where,
 I became fascinated in the wonder of watching her tiny, well-worn hands delicately prepare exquisite and thoughtful meals.
As she sang songs from her youth she sliced and diced, sautéed and fillet.
Not, until I found myself in the kitchen as an adult did I realize that all of her culinary masterpieces where prepared on a very limited budget. It had never crossed my mind because
every mouthful had been prepared with love.

What is the connection between food and love?
The evidence is all around us.
Remember your first taste of cotton candy at the fair or a romantic candle-lit dinner?
Perhaps even the gallon of Rocky Road ice cream when that date didn’t quite work out?
In food there is a giving and a sharing mixed with a bit of the unknown.

My romance with food and the people with whom I share it is an ongoing adventure in which I will always be opened minded, because I know that when inspired with love- anything is possible!

Jeanne from the Collage of Life has designed a very special way to reflect on the development of a blogger and the blogs that we have created. 
She is a very talented blogger and a person that I admire, greatly! 
If you click her picture above, you will read her very first post, and she has requested that we put up our first posts as well.  It had me thinking, what was my very first post?  I originally started this blog when I began writing food reviews for the local paper of my small town.  But, I could not even remember what my first post was about!  I looked back into the archives and found what had inspired me to start River-Rose...Thank you, Jeanne and to all of the many fascinating and creative bloggers that have made my blogging experience a pure joy!
xoxo

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Molasses-Gingerbread Cake with Mascarpone Cream

Wonderfully submitted by:  Guadalupe Lucio

Total Time: 1 hr 30 min.
Makes 9 servings

Cake

2 1/4 C all purpose flour
1 ¾ ground ginger
1 t cinnamon
1 ¾ t baking soda
½ t salt
¾ c plus 2 T canola oil
¾ c plus 2 T honey
2 eggs
1 t finely grated lemon zest
¾ boiling water

Orange Confit

1 orange, zest peeled with a vegetable peeler and sliced lengthwise into 1/8 strips
4 Cup water
½ Cup sugar

Mascarpone Cream

1 C mascarpone at room temp
¾ C heavy cream
¾ t finely grated orange zest
2 T confectioners’ sugar

1. Make the cake: preheat the oven to 350. Spray a 9-inch square baking pan with vegetable cooking spray. In a large bowl, combine the flour with the ground ginger, cinnamon, baking soda and salt. In a medium bowl, whisk the canola oil with the brown sugar, molasses, honey, eggs and lemon zest until smooth. Whisk the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until combined. Whisk in the boiling water. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and bake for about 1 hour and 10 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean or a toothpick. Let cake rest on a rack for about 2 hours.

2. Make the orange confit: In a medium saucepan, combine the strips of orange zest with the water and sugar. Bring to a boil and cook over high heat until syrupy and the orange zest is soft, about 30 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a plate, discard the syrup or use as simple syrup for a cocktail.

3. Make the mascarpone cream: In a large bowl, using an electric mixer at med speed, beat the mascarpone with the cream, orange zest, confectioner’s sugar and salt until soft peaks form.

4. Cut the molasses cake into squares and transfer to a plate. Dollop with the cream on top and garnish with the orange confit.

The cake will keep for 2 days at room temperature wrapped in plastic wrap. The orange confit will keep for 3 days airtight at room temp.
 
**Thank You, Dear Friend, for submitting!-- River-Rose**