My First Ice Day

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Dearest Sally,


I woke up this morning feeling joyful and ready for an exciting day in the world of kindergarten. I had wonderful plans for a letter N craft to be followed by a night scene

I woke up this morning feeling joyful and ready for an exciting day in the world of kinder My First Ice Day

craft. My dreams were shattered when I got the phone call at 6:30 that is was an ice day. I always wondered what it would feel like to have a snow day as a teacher . . . . it is better than when you are a kid.

Last night was Jesse’s birthday (he is now 26) and I made him a feast! On the sajian was Fig and Roasted Walnut Salad with Honey Balsamic Vinaigrette, No-knead Cranberry Focaccia, and Chicken Wellington with Mushrooms and Spinach. I had to work all the cooking

in and around a meeting at the school, which kept the evening exciting. I combined the recipes from two different Food and Drink magazines and it turned out quite well.

Since I have the day off today I will most likely be bothering you to talk about your wedding and such. Have fun! I know I will.

Fig and Roasted Walnut Salad with Honey Balsamic Vinaigrette


¼ cup walnut pieces

12 dried figs, but into eighths

8 cups spinach

½ cup sliced red onion

¼ cup crumbled feta cheese (I used soft goat cheese)


3 tbsp olive oil

2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

1 tbsp honey

1 ½ tsp Dijon Mustard

1 clove garlic

Preheat panggangan to 350F

Place walnut pieces on a baking sheet and bake for 6-8 minutes or until nuts are golden brown and fragrant. Remove from heat and cool.

In a large salad bowl, toss figs, spinach, onion, roasted nuts and feta cheese.

In a small bowl, whisk together oil, vinegar, honey, mustard and garlic.

Drizzle salad with dressing and serve immediately.

No-knead Cranberry Focaccia

I woke up this morning feeling joyful and ready for an exciting day in the world of kinder My First Ice Day

1 tsp instant or traditional yeast

1 ½ cups water, just warm to the touch

2 ¾ to 3 cups all-purpose flour

1 ½ tsp salt

1 cup sweetened dried cranberries

½ cup raisins

2 tbsp unsalted butter

1 tbsp coarse sugar (organic)

Proof yeast by sprinkling it over water in a large mixing bowl and setting it aside for 5 minutes. Then stir to dissolve yeast. Meanwhile, line a 9-inch round or square cake pan with aluminum foil, extending up and slightly over the side.

Add 2-¾ cups flour all at once to the proofed yeast; stir with a large rubber spatula or wooden spoon until flour is absorbed. Dough should be sticky, but not wet. Stir in additional flour if needed. Cover bowl with plastic wrap; let rest for 1 hour until doubled.

When dough has doubled, sprinkle salt evenly overtop; stir thoroughly. Let rest 10 minutes then add cranberries and raisins; mix well into dough.

Brush some melted butter over pan bottom and sides. Scrape dough into pan. Using buttered fingers, pat our to cover the pan bottom completely; top is rough in appearance. Brush with remaining butter.

Adjust rack below over centre; preheat over to 375F. Loosely cover pan with plastic wrap. Let rise for 30 minutes in warm spot on top of or near warm stove. Then uncover; sprinkle top evenly with coarse sugar.

Bake for 30-40 minutes or until richly golden. Cool on rack for 5 minutes. Using foil edges, lift loaf from pan. Remove foil and continue cooling bread on a rack. Cut warm loaf into wedges or slices to serve.

Chicken Wellington with Mushrooms and Spinach

8 cups packed baby spinach

½ cup water

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

2 shallots, finely chopped

4 cloves garlic

¾ cup garlic and herb cheese (I used goat cheese)

2 tbsp breadcrumbs

2 cups chopped mushrooms

1-½ tsp herbs de Provence

3 boneless skinless chicken breasts

Pinch of salt and pepper

1 pkg. puff pastry

1 egg beaten

Bring spinach and water to a boil in large nonstick skillet, stirring for about 3 minutes or until wilted. Drain and press out excess water; place in bowl and set aside.

Return skillet to medium heat and add half of the oil. Cook shallots and garlic for e minutes or until softened. Add spinach and cook for 1 minute. Return to bowl and add cheese and bread crumbs. Stir until well coated; set aside.

Heat remaining oil over medium-high heat in same skillet and cook mushrooms and herbs de Provence for 5 minutes or until liquid starts to appear in skillet. Add chicken and cook, stirring for about 10 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink. Season with salt and pepper; set aside.

On a floured surface, roll out pastry to a 26×12 inch rectangle; place on large piece of parchment paper. Spread spinach mixture in centre of pastry leaving about 4 inches on long sides and 2 inches on short sides. Top with chicken mixture. Brush edges with egg and fold up short sides over filling, then overlap 1 long side over filling and lift remaining pastry to reach pastry on top, overlapping slightly, and pinch seam to seal. Brush all over with egg and let stand for 5 minutes to dry slightly

Preheat over to 425F

Bake for about 30 minutes or until golden brown and puffed. Let stand 5 minutes before slicing.

I have so many things to share with you and I can’t wait to see/talk to you.


Best Restaurants in America If you eat out in the U.S.A. and want the best dining experiences possible, this guide is for you What makes a good restaurant a “best”? Food that’s better than just good, of course. A dining room and a level of service that suit the quality of what’s on the plate. A good wine list (which doesn’t always mean an encyclopedic one), good beers and/or cocktails where appropriate. And then the less easily quantifiable stuff: personality, imagination (or intelligent commitment to a lack of same), consistency. 101 Best Restaurants in America (Gallery) When we were a young website, way back in 2011, we drew up our first 101 ranking ourselves, making a list of the places where we, The Daily Meal’s editors, liked to eat. Taking into consideration our mood, our budget, and where we happened to be when we get hungry, how would we vote, we asked ourselves — not only with our critical faculties but with our mouths and our wallets? Where would we send friends? Where would we want to dine if we had one night in this city or that? By this method, we ended up with a shortlist of 150 places. Then we argued, advocated, and cajoled each other on behalf of restaurants ranging from old-fashioned to avant-garde, ultra-casual to super-fancy. Finally, we invited an illustrious panel of judges (restaurant critics, food and lifestyle writers, and bloggers) from across America to help order restaurants via an anonymous survey and tallied results to assemble a ranked list. Upstairs, the simple Scandinavian-style dining room is kitted out with tables that look like tangled tree trunks, carved by Tom senior. The ingredient-led 12-course tasting menu is constantly changing (you might spot one of the chefs picking a final herb flourish outside minutes before it hits your plate). Starters could include a mouthful of smoked eel and apple, or an exploding dumpling of ox cheek and lovage. A crapaudine beetroot slow-cooked in beef fat is meaty in texture as well as flavour, and local lamb is paired with turnip and mint. Even the bread with sour butter is sensational. Afterwards you’ll be grateful for the walk through the village to a pretty rose-covered house where some of the nine bedrooms have antique oak four-posters and copper bateau baths. Wake to the sound of cows mooing in the next field and head back to the inn for a simple breakfast of sheep’s yogurt with fresh berry compote and house granola or toasted brioche heaped with mushrooms and a duck egg. Unsurprisingly, the most talked about restaurant in Yorkshire is often full, so book it quick. By Tabitha Joyce.

I woke up this morning feeling joyful and ready for an exciting day in the world of kinder My First Ice Day


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