How did you like the recent cold spell? I enjoy that you can dress up when it is colder. Hot weather limits how many clothes you can take off and not be accused of indecent exposure, ha, ha.
Two weeks ago I went to visit my son and brother in San Diego. Tommy, my brother, offered to pick me up in his plane -- a Cessna 182 four-seater. Since he has been asking if I could paint a mural over his fireplace, I figured it would be an even trade.
This was my first time flying with him -- and the first time I had flown in a small plane. I never doubted Tommy's ability as a pilot. It was the confined space I didn't like. Once he arrived in Mesa, I was committed, no turning back.
To help me relax, I put a few drops of Rescue Remedy under my tongue -- then I was ready to listen about flying procedures: use the restroom, do not eat during flight (you can get nausea if flight gets bumpy due to weather), in an emergency landing, if door gets stuck, kick front or back windows out, etc.
He is very meticulous and checks the plane inside and outside before takeoff. We got in, tightened our seat belts -- head phones, oxygen, engine, flight book, etc. -- ready. It was so exciting to hear him talking back and forth to the tower and experience how smoothly he handled the plane from takeoff to landing one-and-a-half hours later in San Diego. Except for enjoying the view, I didn't dare move for fear of making the plane off-balance. Yes, laugh if you want. I know better now. The flight back was more relaxing.
His friends asked how I liked flying with Tommy. My comment was "The pilot was great, but the stewardess never showed up to offer drinks or peanuts." They all laughed.
The mural I did has the look of old brick with ivy growing on it. He liked it.
OK, let's get creative with two great salads using apples that will make your palate dance: Apple and Chicory Salad and The New Waldorf Salad
Today's tip: Being single: Eating alone tends to be inseparable from cooking alone. But it is. There is at least one person worth cooking for -- yourself!
Apple and Chicory Salad
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
3 red apples
3 celery stalks, thinly sliced crosswise
1 small heart of chicory (curly endive), torn into pieces
2/3 cup (5 fluid ounces) sour cream
2 tablespoons plain yogurt
1 tablespoon freshly grated horseradish
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
6 walnut halves, coarsely chopped.
Fill a large bowl with water and add the lemon juice. Core the apples, but do not peel them. Cut them into 1-inch chunks, dropping them into the bowl of water as they are cut.
Drain well and add to a salad bowl, along with the celery and chicory.
In a small bowl, stir together the sour cream, yogurt, horseradish and salt and pepper until well mixed. Pour the dressing over the salad, add the walnuts, toss and serve.
The New Waldorf Salad
Created at New York's Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in the 1890s, Waldorf Salad originally contained only apples, celery, and mayonnaise. Later, walnuts became a "must." This version adds kiwi fruit, pineapple and lemon yogurt.
1/2 of a fresh pineapple, peeled, cored, and cut up (2 cups) or 2 15-1/4 ounce cans pineapple chunks (juice pack), drained
1 medium apple, cored and coarsely chopped (1 cup)
1/2 cup thinly sliced celery
1/2 cup halved seedless red grades
1/2 cup toasted walnut pieces
2 kiwi fruit, peeled, halved lengthwise, and sliced
1/2 cup reduced-calorie mayonnaise or salad dressing
1/3 cup lemon-flavored yogurt
1 tablespoon honey
Lettuce leaves (optional)
In a large bowl, gently toss together pineapple, apple, celery, grapes, walnuts and kiwi fruit.
In a small bowl, stir together the mayonnaise or salad dressing, yogurt, and honey; fold gently onto fruit mixture. Cover and chill for 2 to 24 hours. Serve on lettuce leaves, if desired.
Makes 6 to 8 servings.