Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year

I want to wish everyone a very peaceful, healthy, and prosperous new year!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

New Years Eve Blue Moon

The Farmer's Almanac defines a blue moon as an extra full moon that occurs in a season.  One season usually has three full moons.  If a season has a fourth full moon, it's referred to as a blue moon.

The Cherokee call the December moon the Snow Moon, the Chinese call it the Bitter Moon.  Other cultures call this the Cold Moon, the Long Night Moon or the Wind & Rain Moon.  On December 31st we’ll have our second full moon of the month, a blue moon with a partial eclipse!  Blue moons occur on New Year’s Eve only once every 19 years.  The last one was in 1990 and the next one will occur in 2028.  However, for those living in Australia and Asia, the full moon doesn’t show up until New Year’s Day, which makes January a blue moon month for them.
Those of us in North America will not be able to see the partial eclipse.  It will be mainly visible in Europe, Africa and Asia and across Alaska.
This full moon occurs in the sign of Cancer, an emotional sign, ruled by the moon.  It’s in axis with Capricorn,  representing accountability, duty and reputation.  It’s important to remember balance at this time, between our home and personal life and our career and goals.  Balance of our emotions.  It’s a time of increased self evaluation and epiphanies.
2009 is almost over and I’m happy to see it go.  It’s been a really rough year for me and a lot of you as well, I’m guessing.  I’m looking forward to a fresh start in a new year....a new decade.  I hope this next year brings us all some peace and joy.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Soft Gingerbread

This is the very first cake I attempted to make without eggs, and it’s still one of my favorites.  I adapted the recipe from a cookbook I picked up at the Hancock Shaker Village in Pittsfield Mass.  The Shakers were one of the more influential religious organizations of their time.  They were responsible for numerous inventions: the clothes pin, the flat broom, and the circular saw.  Borden went to a Shaker village to see their evaporator when he was attempting to invent evaporated milk.  They were also the first to grow and sell seeds in paper packets.  Their furniture designs are beautiful in their simplicity.  Maybe all that creativity was a result of the celibacy thing....

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Raw Cranberry Macaroon Thumbprint Cookies

These cookies are the balance to all of the other holiday baking I’m doing and will be consuming over the next few weeks.  My cranberry macaroons are “raw” which means I dehydrated them at 115˚ instead of baking them.  This way, all of the enzymes that naturally occur in raw foods will still be active.  It also means I used ingredients that were never cooked over 115˚, like raw organic shredded coconut, raw cocoa powder and raw agave nectar.  

Friday, December 11, 2009

Mexican Bean Soup

Soup has always been a family favorite on cold winter nights and this winter is no exception.  A warm bowl of soup always hits the spot, and this soup is one of my favorites.  I adapted the recipe from a book I bought years ago called The Book of Soups by Lorna Rhodes.  

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Cranberry Pecan Oatmeal Cookies

Cookies are a perfect gift.  They’re relatively inexpensive and easy to make, and will please just about everyone.  I mean, really, who doesn’t like cookies??  They can be altered to meet anyone’s dietary requirements.  Allergic to nuts, leave them out.  Hate cranberries...substitute raisins.  There are lots and lots of gluten free recipes out there in blog land, just google your favorite kind.  I’m working on some raw food cookies that will make delicious, well appreciated gifts.  

My Frozen Garden

We didn’t have any snow last night like some of the Bay Area cities but we did have a really hard frost last night.  When I woke up this morning my garden was like a winter wonderland, everything was frozen and covered with ice crystals.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Noodle Pudding - Dairy and Egg Free

One of my favorite dishes as a child was noodle kugel or pudding.  It was something my mother made from a recipe that was handed down from her mother.  More of a casserole than what we traditionally think of as “pudding”, we ate this cinnamon raisin kugel for dinner.