Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Red Tails & Red Violins

I was going to post a picture of my African Grey's Red Tail, but time is running short since I had a stressful day - not one of those Red Letter Days you enjoy having. It began with my Brittany Puppy of 11 months eating some of my husband's blood pressure medicine. A mad dash to the veterinarian to get Paisley to throw up took up most of my morning. I'm happy to report that she is fine tonight.

I was going to post a poem on Red from my favorite children's book - which I cannot find now that I am looking for it! I'll locate it later and share some of the poetry. I'm seeing 'red' as I can't find it!

Izzy, the African Grey would love me to hold her so I'm going to do that instead of making her pose for a picture.

I am, however, going to write about one of my favorite movies: The Red Violin. Since I play the violin it makes it even more interesting. Maybe I'll hold Izzy and watch the movie! Have you seen it? It is an epic adventure of mystery and obsession around a one-of-a-kind, red violin and the lives of all who touched it.

Now for the fun. Guess what was used to make the violin 'red' in color and I will draw from those who leave a comment with the correct answer. You have to accept my version of what they used to color it since I control the contest! The winner wins a copy of this wonderful movie. Good luck and post your guess in the comment section.

We are off tomorrow to another color.

Until Later,

Monday, June 28, 2010

Gift of Threads

This Lovely heart graces the blog of a recent follower! Since it is Red (and White) and is a heart, and checkerboard as well, I think the owner of this blog deserves to win the gift of threads (Red Threads of course) I am giving away this month. So, If Colorado Blogger will contact me via email to give me her address I will package up a nice red package, filled with red threads and other red goodies in celebration of our Month of Red in June!
Pass the word about the blog as I am going to give a huge thread give-a-way when we reach 100 followers! In the meanwhile, we will continue to explore color, and I will find some interesting items to give away on my blog!
By the way, wish you were here to taste the salmon - it is delicious. . .
Until Another Day, Cecelia

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Smoked Salmon Recipes

I remembered that I have two recipes that are equally wonderful for smoked salmon. The first one is more of a Teriyaki Salmon and the second one is from my Son, Gage, who is a terrific cook and this is his personal recipe. Enjoy!

Teriyaki Smoked Salmon

2 C Soy Sauce
1/4 C salt
1/2 C brown sugar
1 C water
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp black pepper (fine grind)
1 C white wine (dry to medium)
1/2 - 1 tsp. poultry seasoning

Combine and stir until salt and sugar dissolve. Cover salmon with brine and refrigerate for 8-12 hours. Wash brine off and put salmon on racks to air dry for 1-2 hours or until a shiny skin look (dried brine) forms. Spray racks with pam or use foil. Smoke 5-8 hours at 130 degrees using soaked wood chips with your smoker 3-4 times. You will have to adjust cooking time to the degree of moistness or dryness you like in your smoked salmon.

Gage's Smoked Salmon

32-oz apple juice
2/3 C kosher salt
1/3 C brown sugar
1 teaspoon allspice
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1 teaspoon black pepper
2 whole cloves
1/4 tsp paprika
2 teaspoon dried onions
1 clove garlic, minced
1 sprig each of fresh lavender, sage, rosemary and a couple of bay leaves
Use fresh herbs if possible and dry bay leaves unless you are lucky enough to have a Bay Tree!

Brine fish in brine for 24 hours. Rinse and pat dry with paper towels. Smoke fish at 140 degrees for 2-3 hours or unil done. Fill smoker pan with wood chips a couple of times. This is based on using salmon fillets. Thicker pieces will require longer cooking time.


Until Later,

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Strawberry Jam

It's that time of year - Strawberry Season. I made Strawberry Jam yesterday, the same way my Mother made it before me. Strawberries, sugar, lemon juice, fruit pectin and White Karo Syrup to keep the crystals from forming in the freezer. As I crushed the fruit I thought of all the times I helped My Mom make this same jam. . . .and I am thankful I learned to make homemade jams and jellies. For freezer jam we simply used the recipe on the MCP packet. Perhaps some of you have a favorite recipe for Jam. I have one I love for Apricot Jam that I will share during July even though we won't be blogging about Orange that month! Naturally I had to taste my Jam before I froze it!
Tomorrow I'll post a recipe for another 'red' food we are smoking today - fresh Salmon just in from Alaska. It is a wonderful recipe so check back tomorrow.
Until Later,

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Red-Letter Days

Red-Letter Days

The origin of Red-Letter days was written about in The Boke of Eneydos from 1490: "We wryte yet in oure kalenders the hyghe festes wyth rede lettres of coloure of purpre."

This transcribes to writing church festivals in red on calenders and more recently, any special day.

We are having a Red Letter Day in our family this weekend with the Wedding of a Grandson.

Another interesting quote from Aesop's Fables:

"A truthful Man, finding a musial instrument in the road, asked the name of it, and was told that it was a fish-horn. The nex time he went fishing he set his nets and blew the fish-horn all day to charm the fish into them; but at nightfall there were not only no fish in his nets, but none along that part of the coast. Meeting a friend while on his way home he was asked luck he had had. "Well," said the Trughtul Man, "the weather is not right for fishing, but it's a red-letter day for music".

What Red-Letter days do you carry in your heart of memories? I carry those days where my children were born or came into my life, saying good-byes to old friends and family at the gravesite, saying goodbye to my childhood home when it was sold. Some happy, some sad, but all moments in time that have made my life. Marriage, grandchildren, first days of school, Christmas' of past, a memory of a day at church. . . . moments that make a life.

Spend a few moments writing about your Red-Letter Days.

Until Later,

Sunday, June 6, 2010

The Perfect Red

Did you know that we can distinguish a single shade of color from the millions of colors in our world? Red, it seems is a very important color. "We roll out the red carpet, catch crooks red-handed, and dread getting caught in red tape. We stop at red lights, ignore red herrings, and celebrate red-letter days. Depending on our political persuasions, we wave the red flag or fear the red in the bed. When hot rage overpowers us, we say we see red." This quote is from a favorite book:

The color red is an ancient one and the quest for the 'perfect red' is a story that fascinates. Did you know that the bug Cochineal was the answer to this quest for the perfect red? "The History of this mad race for cochineal is a window onto another world - a world in which red was rare and precious, a source of wealth and power for those who knew its secrets. To obtain it, men sacked ships, turned spy, and courted death." This is their story.

You will not be sorry if you purchase the book by Amy Butler Greenfield.

More on Red Later. . .