Tracks are from two lost dogs......
The resident neighborhood bear has, I think, hibernated. Well, she should have anyway! Our garbage remains undisturbed and that's one sign of no bears.
Meantime, Advent cookie baking continues for DROP IN AND DECORATE, coming up on Monday, December 14, 4-7pm. Looking forward to decorating some great cookies with all of you (rsvp if you haven't already) ... The Bridge, a local assisted-living facility, is the lucky recipient of your good work. SEE YOU SOON!!While it's so cold, I thought you might like a good pot roast and next-day beef-vegetable soup recipe. We've enjoyed it for a few days and have shared with neighbors who haven't gotten out in the weather either. You could freeze the soup for a quick holiday-time meal when your family's in town and you'd rather play cards than stay in the kitchen. Stop by your favorite bakery and pick up best-quality bread, double-wrap in aluminum foil and freeze with the soup. To reheat soup, place up-side down container in sink under hot water until soup "pops." Place in large crockpot and let unthaw on low all day. For bread, place frozen, wrapped loaf in 350F preheated oven for 15-20 minutes. Unwrap and slice. Splurge on a little butter.
Butternut Squash Pot Roast
4-5# chuck roast (or any pot roast)
4T gluten-free flour mixture, divided (fine to use regular flour)
2 large onions, sliced
2T canola oil
2-3 c red wine
2 c gluten-free beef broth (or regular broth)
1# butternut squash, peeled and cut into 3-4" pieces
3 large carrots, peeled and cut into 2" pieces
3 parsnips, peeled and cut into 1-2" pieces
5-6 sprigs fresh thyme or tsp dried thyme; 2 lrg sprigs rosemary or 1/2 tsp dried
Kosher salt and freshly-ground pepper1/4-1/3 c water
Heat oil over medium-high heat in dutch oven or stockpot. Cover roast with 2T gluten-free flour mix and a generous amount of salt and pepper. Don't be stingy with seasoning this big piece of meat. Brown meat well on one side for several minutes. Turn meat and add sliced onions. When second side in nicely browned, add wine and broth. Reduce heat and cover. Simmer for about 2 hours (or place on low in crockpot for 6 hours after adding vegetables below).
When meat is just beginning to be a little tender, add vegetables, thyme and rosemary to the pot for the last hour of cooking. When everything is fork tender, remove meat and vegetables to a platter and cover with foil to keep warm.
Stay warm; stay well. Keep your Advent journey well-fed. If you share your Advent plate, it won't get too full. It's a crazy season. Pick the couple of things you like most to do and skip the rest. Turn down the lights; put the candles on. Invite your friends and family. They won't see the dust. They don't care anyway; they just need to know you want to be with them. Ok, wipe down the bathroom sink if you have to.
Advent Reading: Henri Nouwen: ADVENT MEDITATIONS, LIVING IN HOPE
Advent Listening: We try to change out our cds daily to listen to different music every dinner. Three on the stereo right now are
THE HOLLY AND THE IVY Clare College Choir/John Rutter
AND GLORY SHOWN AROUND The Rose Ensemble
ALL ON A WINTER'S NIGHT Sting
Gabby wants to know if I'll post a picture of her and her new friend, Anna ( who recently adopted some good human friends of ours):
Gab and Anna, seeing who has the best Christmas outfit................... Or ----
Anna says,"Not the Mama!"
Sing a new carol; Dave and I have written one. New problem: how to share it on the blog..