Arabia, Beauty in Nature, Blue, Central Arabia, Clouds, Landscape, Middle East, Najd, Nejd, Saudi Arabia, Sunrise, ancient land, desert, escarpment, highland region, iris in April, peaceful, plateau, solitary

Sunrise in the Najd

Sunrise in the Najd, or “highland,” the central region of the Arabian Peninsula. 

The dromedary camel walks moving both legs on one side then the other while its body rolls side to side.  This seesaw movement can cause a storage bag to rub against the camels body developing  a hole.  As best I can tell this is what most likely took place on one of the caravans crossing the Arabian desert.

Numerous caravan routes criss crossed Arabia.  This image is of one traversing the  Najd in central Saudi Arabia.  Along this ancient trade route a hole wore into a bag carrying iris bulbs.  The seesaw movement of the camel deposited bulbs along the desert floor.  Wind blew sand over the bulbs and they lay dormant until in the spring the winter rains enable the iris to bloom.

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Gift of the Caravans


Homemade Raspberry Crepe

Crepe with raspberry, banana, and creme fraiche

Crepe with raspberry, banana and creme fraiche

Quick, easy, pretty and delicious.  The crepe is made with organic vanilla extract and finely grated lemon peel.  The filling is fresh raspberry and banana. On top is creme fraiche and raspberry.  After gently frying the crepes I put in the filling and broil for a minute or two to make the crepes crunchy. The creme fraiche is placed on top at the time of serving. The combination of flavors is a tasty interplay of tart, sweet and creamy.  If you’re in the neighborhood stop by and I’ll make you some.


Leftover Homemade Peach-Blueberry Pie + Recipie

Homemade Peach Blueberry Pie

Leftover homemade peach blueberry pie

This is a follow on post to the Peach Pie post yesterday.

The only reason this much was leftover is because we wanted to have more tomorrow.  We’ve gotten a lot of interest in the Peach Pie post and requests for the recipe.  Enjoy

Pie Crust

I found this dough recipe in Cook’s Illustrated magazine.

This recipe will yield an 8” to 10” crust for the top.

1 1/4    Cup unbleached all purpose flour                                                                                   1/2       Teaspoon table salt                                                                                                                 1           Tablespoon sugar                                                                                                              6           Tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4 slices                                                       1/4       Cup cold vegetable shortening cut into small pieces                                                        2           Tablespoons cold Vodka                                                                                                2           Tablespoons water                                                                                                                                                                        Process until the mixture has chunks like cottage cheese.                                                      Wrap the dough in plastic and refrigerate for 45 minutes.                                                        The dough can be stored for up to two days.

While you prepare the filling take the dough from the refrigerator and let it soften so you can roll it out after you’ve completed the filling.

Peach Filling

In my opinion Georgia peaches have the best flavor.  Select firm peaches.

8 to 10 peaches peeled and sliced (thick)                                                                                 1/2        of 1 Lemon, juiced                                                                                                                 1           Egg                                                                                                                                      2           Tablespoons Flour                                                                                                           1           Tablespoon cornstarch                                                                                                   2/3       Cup sugar                                                                                                                          1/3       Cup melted butter                                                                                                            2           Teaspoons Vanilla, use the highest quality you can find. Lanes has a Mexican vanilla.                                                                                                                                            1           Teaspoon grated nutmeg, grate the nut                                                                               1           Teaspoon cinnamon                                                                                                                 Blueberries, about a cup

Gently mix together and heat on stove do not boil, the goal is to thicken and create a sauce.                                                                                                                                                  Place the Peach filling into the pie plate.                                                                                    Cover with a layer of fresh Blueberries.                                                                                        Roll out the dough to the size of your pie plate.                                                                   Option: Cover the entire top or cut slices and create a lattice.                                                                                                                                                                           1          Egg white, whipped moderately.  Brush on top of the dough.

Cook at 400 degrees for 15 minutes on the middle oven rack.                                               Reduce heat to 350 degrees and cook for about 45 minutes.

Your oven will bake differently than mine so keep an eye on the pie. Patti, my wife, recommends the pie be served warm with Haagen Dazs vanilla ice cream (in another dish) –she hates it if the crust gets mushy!