I think one of my favorite things in all this world is that first cup of coffee in the early morning light. I never get tired of the taste, the smell, or the feel of that warm mug of goodness. Truth be told – I’m not even a huge coffee drinker, so it’s more than the actual beverage (although I do love that caffeinated rush it brings!) I just love the ritual of making that first pot, sipping that first taste and knowing that a new day is before me.
Ritual. Maybe that’s it. Coffee means a new day and the chance to do some great things. Ritual. I like the sound of the word. It brings a sense of steadiness to a crazy world, doesn’t it? A world where too often people are rushing around doing their own thing, going their own way with little regard for …..well, ritual!
Here’s a ritual that I wish I observed more often – BRUNCH! It’s difficult to get my family together these days, so yesterday, when I had most of my clan at home, I had to have a meal together. Creating a little bit of ritual for them, you see.
On the menu:
We all gave this 5 stars. We smothered ours in fresh avocado and salsa. (of course!)
Mango Pineapple Green Smoothie
I give it 5 stars. This lovely drink has been in my mind ever since Denise blogged about it.
My boys did not love this, but they are not huge smoothie people. My daughter and I LOVED it.
Plum Torte with Almonds and Orange
Tweaked from Cuisine at Home magazine (July/August 2012)
A total 5 star rating from all of us!
The recipe was very simple but added a nice touch to then end of our meal.
Here’s what you need for the torte:
¾ C sugar
½ C sliced almonds
¾ C flour
½ t baking powder
¼ t salt
6 T butter, cut into cubes
1 t vanilla (always use the good stuff – it does make a difference)
Zest of 1 orange
1 lb fresh plums – cut into eighths
Here’s what you need for the sauce:
½ C orange marmalade
Splash or two of dark rum
2 T brown sugar
Juice of 1 orange
Here’s what you do:
Process the sugar and almonds until finely ground. Add the flour, baking powder, salt and butter. Process a bit more. Add the eggs, vanilla and zest. Process about 10 seconds.
Spread the dough into a 9-inch springform pan which has been sprayed and floured. Arrange the plum slices, skin side up, in a pretty design. Bake for 40 minutes at 325 degrees.
While the torte is in the oven, make the EXCELLENT sauce by heating the marmalade, rum, brown sugar and fresh orange juice. Boil for a few minutes until desired consistency. Strain the sauce and set aside.
Cool a bit before removing the outer ring. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve with pride. We ate our while it was still warm from the oven and the sauce was warm too - killer!