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SPELLING BEE

Has is been a bit cold for you?

Crunch, Crunch, Snap, Pop, Krackle! Add in high winds and blowing snow across everything. My guess would be that winter has arrived with full sound effects to make it a real January weather experience. We did not need to see the minus sign to know that leaving the shorts at home would be a good idea. I was gifted with new warm socks and gloves so I should be okay for awhile. Maybe I will be less likely to leave those items behind with the cold weather to remind me to stay warm.

The most brave thing I did this week was back the pickup out and then later drive it back into the garage. It’s a close fit even on a good day but up until a week or so ago I have never done that. Husband Larry ALWAYS did that so I had to step up my moves on getting it done. I had backed it out twice before and only put in once but with lots of people help. One time I chickened out and Neighbor Tony put it in. This time I was all by myself and needed to use the truck for an auction pickup. I DID IT without damage to person or building!

I have been busy going through a few tons of paper, magazines and books that were Husband Larry’s pride and joy. I got a lot of magazines canceled and homes found for most of them that took up LOTS of room in the living room. I am currently working on the paper part and finding information on a very wide range of subjects including why skunks are a valuable part of the American landscape. The one hint I found in the sea of information that I will relay to you was how to make a snow angel wearing a “skirt”. Apparently the way I have made them and lots of other people also is to lay in the fresh snow and move ones arms back and forth and do the same with each leg. That gets gets you “pants” on the snow angel as the snow collects in the middle. To make a “skirt”, you put both legs together and move them together back and forth. No middle snow ridge! This is just one of the thousands of trivia things Husband Larry had on hand. Maybe this is just the thing to make you look forward to the next snow storm.

In this kind of weather you can almost hear your oven calling to you to turn it on and bake something. In case you can avoid listening to it but still want to have the house smell good, you can do the spice smell trick. Put a few cups of water in a medium cooking pan and add 2 tablespoons or so of cinnamon and/or other spices and bring to a boil. Turn down as low as possible and keep an eye on the water level, refilling as necessary, and you should have baking smells for hours. You will have to figure out what you say when asked what it was that you baked that smells so good.

You may really want to turn on the oven after you check out this easy but fancy Apple Bread Pudding Cake. You can use cooked apples or even easier is applesauce. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly butter an 8 inch square baking pan and line with foil, leaving 2 inch overhang and butter the foil also. Mix ½ cup golden raisins, 2½ cups applesauce OR cooked apples, 1 tsp grated lemon zest and 1 tsp ground cinnamon in a bowl and set aside. Whisk 4 TBS of melted butter, ½ cup milk, and 2 egg yolks (save the whites) in a shallow dish. You will be using 1 pound of sliced cinnamon-raisin bread with crusts removed. Dip half of the bread slices in the egg mixture and layer in the buttered pan, trimming and fitting as needed. Spread the applesauce OR the cooked apples over the bread. Dip remaining bread and place on top. Bake until top is golden brown and egg mix is set, about 35 minutes. While this is baking, beat the egg whites and add ½ cup powdered sugar until stiff peaks form. When the cake is done, spread ¾ cup apricot jelly on top and put the beaten egg whites over the jelly. Return to oven for 5-7 minutes to brown topping. Cool in pan for about an hour and lift out of pan using the foil. Yummy for the tummy! Share with a friend or neighbor!

BEA WESTERBERG

January 12, 2022