We are in the throes of Mardi Gras season, which started officially on Jan. 6, the birthday of St. Joan of Arc, France’s patron saint. The date also celebrates the Feast of The Three Kings, the Epiphany. New Orleans kick starts its Carnival on this date each year with a parade, its first of the season. Merrymaking continues and culminates with the festivities this year on Feb. 17 - Mardi Gras, French for Fat Tuesday, aka Shrove Tuesday, the final day of Carnival.
We remember our veterans this time of year, and a special date comes to mind. Nov. 11, of course – the day World War I, the Great War, ended. In remembrance of all of our veterans, I’m sending a shoutout and a big “Thank You,” and hope you had a Happy Veterans Day.
Salagadoola mechicka boola bibbidi-bobbidi-boo. It’ll do magic believe it or not. Bippidy-boppity-boo. These words may not magically turn your pumpkin into a Rolls-Royce or produce the charming prince who is the man of your dreams, but they are a catchy tune that you can sing while you’re cooking up something special – like The Great Pumpkin Meatloaf.
It was sweet, good and fun for everyone. The Philadelphia Honey Festival, held last weekend, proved to bee the queen bee of festivals — one sweet treat. If you missed this year’s festival, mark your calendar for next September, and bee ready to buzz over there. Besides honey tastings from local beekeepers with jars of honey and honeycomb for sale, there were hive demonstrations, honey extractions, plant sales and children’s activities, along with music and a cooking contest. Additionally, two authors were on hand and discussed their new books – one a bee thriller about colony collapse disorder, sprinkled with suspense and romance, and the other about urban beekeeping. Libations made with honey for sampling included mead and Colonial porter — both “unbee-lievaby” tasty.
Donna Zitter Bordelon
| September 17, 2014 |
Saints and begorrah, it’s St. Patrick’s Day! It’s time for leprechauns, fairies and rainbows, and a pot of gold. Mix shamrocks and shenanigans along with some green beer (oh no!), a little blarney, and you’ve got to have some fun, or craic (pronounced crack), as they say in Ireland. That’s the truth, or my name isn’t Donna O’Zitter McBordelon.
“I think I was born with a rolling pin in my hand,” I declared as I wielded the instrument of flat destruction across the pizza dough, flattening the lump into one, very thin cover for a Stromboli extraordinaire. We were making a Stromboli — my sister-in-law, Denise, and me. It would be our family’s last visit to Atlanta to see Nanny, my husband’s mother, who was in at-home hospice at Denise’s house. Denise wanted to learn how to make Stromboli. But who can do that without a rolling pin? A previous phone conversation had disclosed that we would be without that necessary tool, so I brought mine along on our trip from Philadelphia.
For many years, Nov. 11 was a holiday for me. It meant no reveille that morning. It meant a day without fighting my way through traffic formations. It meant no maneuvering to try to find a seat on the express train to town. It was a day to desist from the duties of the day’s regimented drills. Clearly, I wasn’t AWOL. I was just on a day’s leave, thanks to the veterans. I always appreciated that day.
Hello, Northeast Philly readers. Welcome to my kitchen! Come in, sit down, stay a while and let’s talk about good food. It’s been some time since I last wrote the weekly food column for the Northeast Times, and although I haven’t been writing about food in the Times, I certainly have been collecting recipes and cooking. It’s déjà vu – with great classic recipes and many exciting, new ones.
I was planning dinner and thinking about how I could transform some leftover, grilled chicken sausages and bell peppers into another meal. Then it hit me: Pizza! Dinner dilemma solved. I decided to slice the sausages, chop up the peppers, combine them with some mild salsa and cheeses, and use it as a topping for homemade, deep-dish pizza.