Saturday 26 March 2011

Poetry Saturday, Sap's Running

Sap's runnin in the maple trees
The smell of sod is in the air,
Although the wind is raw and cold;
The feel of spring is everywwhere,
This morning 'ere the sun came up
I saw a robin zooming down,
A hardy pioneer no doubt,
Looking up housing in the town.

The maple bush is all alive
With light and shade and pitted snow,
Blue smoke is drifting through the trees;
Above a hill I heard a crow
Giving a broadcast of events,
To fellow crows who listened in,
From the split rail atop the fence.

On every rutted tree there hangs
A shiny pail to catch the sap
As drop by drop it slowly falls
From the small nozzle of the tap,
In the pale liquid clear as wine
A few small twigs and leaves have blown
Combining with the frost and sun
To give a flavour of their own.
~Edna Jacques

Oh the memories this poem brings back to me this morning . . . of early spring trips into the sugar bush with my children. The smell of the wood smoke, the air cold and crisp . . . the smell of maple sugar boiling . . . that tasty treat of a maple lollipop at the end. Oh, I do love my Maple Syrup. I think I get that love from my father . . . how I long for some tasty Maple Candies or a bowl of Maple Walnut Ice Cream. That has always been my father's favourite ice cream. You cannot get it over here. I guess I shall have to dust off the ice cream maker and make my own!

When I came over here to live in 2000, I brought with me on the airplane a big 2 litre metal container of Maple Syrup. It was soooo heavy and you could never get away with that now, post 9/11 . . . but we did so enjoy it. Of course you can find Maple Syrup here these days, at a premium price and every so often I do splurge and buy myself a little bottle. Ahhh . . . memories of home.

When I was a child I can remember my Aunt Thelma sending up beautiful Easter Breads to us each year, stogged full of fruit and decorated with icing and candied cherries. This recipe here today reminds me of them. Bless her heart . . . she did not have a lot of money as a single mom with a houseful of children, but she shared what she could with us. As an adult now myself, I can truly appreciate the generosity of her gift, and the love that she must have had for my mother to do so . . .

*Easter Surprise Buns*
Makes 16 buns
Printable Recipe

A lovely bread roll with the hidden surprise of a hot cross filling inside! They make a delightful addition to your Easter Morning breakfast or brunch!

For the buns:
1/3 cup dried currants
3 tablespoons firmly packed brown sugar
3 tablespoons butter, softened
1 teaspoon grated orange peel
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1 (1-pound) loaf frozen bread dough, thawed
(Or one loaf of white bread dough made in your breadmaker on the dough cycle)
3 tablespoons butter, melted

To frost:
1/2 cup icing sugar, sifted
1 tablespoon butter, softened
2 to 3 teaspoons milk

Make the filling by placing the currants, brown sugar, 3 tablespoons softened butter, orange peel and allspice in small bowl. Mix all together well.

Separate the bread dough into 16 equally sized pieces. Place one teaspoon of the currant mixture into center of each piece drawing dough around it to form a ball. Dip the ball into the melted butter. Place into an ungreased 8-inch square baking pan, seam-side down. When all the dough balls are placed in the pan, drizzle with melted butter. Cover lightly and then let rise in warm place until double in size (about 45 minutes).

Preheat the oven to 180*C/350*F/ gas mark 4. Place the buns in the oven and bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and wait a few minutes before removing completely from the pan and placing on a wire rack to cool completely.

Combine all frosting ingredients in small bowl, mixing together well. Place the buns on serving platter. Place frosting in resealable plastic food bag, cutting a very small tip from one corner. Decorate the top of each bun with cross. Serve.

Over in The English Kitchen today, a tasty Chocolate Fudge Cake.

1 comment:

  1. It won't be long now and Easter will be here. Your bread rolls remind me of we call Hot Cross Buns and most bakeries have them here around Easter time. I always buy some but have never made them. I'll be praying for your friend. May the dear Lord keep her under His good care. I do hope your Saturday is a wonderful one.


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