Today I was able to do a rare thing; talk a walk downtown with Katie and Ian, 4 years old and 17 months old, repectively. Most "downtowns" aren't anything like ours. We are lucky. We live in, what our city refers to itself as "Christmas City, USA", Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. We also are very blessed to live on the street most famous in our city, Main Street. Yes, go ahead and giggle, I live on Main Street, USA.
Anyhow, if you click the linked words above you will see that, indeed, Main Street here is quite attractive during the Holiday season. There are carols playing from hidden speakers, shops full of Christmas Cheer, and the lights after dusk are very pretty. We also have a huge star set on South Mountain that is lit up all year long.
We stopped by the bank after dropping 2 of the kids off at school and made customary stops at all my favorite places starting with The Moravian Cook Shop~which is attached to The Moravian Book Shop, who bills itself as America's Oldest Book Store. Cool stuff, huh? Bethlehem was founded by Moravians, Count Zinzendorf in particular, and Moravian College is still alive and doing very well~I should know, I live directly across the street!
On to the food part~we stopped in at the Cook Shop first and Katie had a hot chocolate and strawberry chocolate chip muffin, and I had a cafe au lait and a palmier (!YES , they had them this morning!). That muffin was divine, and I will be sharing a recipe for strawberry bread that is nearly identical.
Off then to Donegal Square, my favorite Celtic shopping spot, where I spied a tea in the window that I made them scramble for when I went in called Taylors of Harrogate, UK~Spiced Christmas Fruit Tea. As soon as we were able to stop for lunch (hot dog for Katie, and turkey on wheat for mom-btw Ian always eats whatever we are all having!) I opened the tin to smell it. Yummy. As soon as hubby gets home I'll brew a perfect pot and if I feel generous I'll make some when my brother and his wife and kids visit next week :o)
Now, this isn't much to the average person at all but, I love food-if you don't know this by now-and these things are all little luxuries to me and, as such, are so well enjoyed.
There were several small things as well that my mom dropped off yesterday. I am lucky enough to be the recipient of her "overages", magazines she accidentally bought twice, food she has too much of or no use for, soaps she bought in abundance; those types of things. Well, she dropped off a full pound of walnuts, a pound of unsalted butter, fresh rosemary, 3 little tea towels made from flour sacks with the cutest little chef design on them,
and~on the non-food-related end~three bars of delicious smelling French milled soap.
Once I utilize these things, you can bet I'll share recipes!
This comes from a cookbook written by my mother's dear friend John Henry, who wrote it for his wife JoAn after her death.
2 -10 oz pkgs frozen strawberries, thawed
1 1/4 c cooking oil
2 c sugar
3 c all-purpose flour
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 c chopped nuts
Stir first 4 ingredients together well then add dry ingredients and stir until combined. Fold in nuts and pour into 2 9x5 inch greased loaf pans. Bake at 350 degrees F for 1 hour or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean.
*I top ours with cinnamon sugar.