December 21, 2017: Merry Solstice to All – The Eckbank Table of Solstice Baking

Over the years one of our Solstice traditions my wife has always kept to  is the Solstice baking schedule to bake cookies, cakes, making peanut brittle, pecan fudge, sugar cookies, Fudge Delice (my favorite and made with dark chocolate), pizzella, shortbread, ginger pies, “Elsa” cookies, Red Velvet cookies, and so much more…21 tins in all.  As each day’s baking cooled, whatever was baked was  placed in one of our many holiday tins collected over the years and placed on a table dedicated for Solstice Baking.  The magical aroma of the day’s baking wafted though the house and when I came home each December evening, it was like walking into a bakery.

The urge to “sample” was overpowering at times but the rule was no sneaking, tasting, or even opening a can once it was placed on the Solstice table until after dinner on Solstice Eve.  As each day neared Solstice Eve  the holiday tins grew and grew and grew until finally Solstice dinner was enjoyed by all and the tins could be opened and sampled to each heart’s delight.

This year, the Solstice Table was our recently acquired German Eckbank in the den,

Without further adieu, today’s image is the “Eckbank Table of Solstice Baking”.  (I’ve also included an index of what each can contains.)

The Eckbank Of Solstice Baking

The Eckbank Of Solstice Baking

Eckbank Table of Baking index

Eckbank Table of Baking index

From each of us to each of you…Merry Solstice and may the New Year usher in a better world for all of us!

Cheers!

 

 

 

 

 

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December 20, 2017: Solstice Challenge – Solstice Eve Flyby

My wife’s favorite ornament for the Solstice Eve celebration…

Solstice Eve Visitor

Solstice Eve Visitor

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December 19th, 2017: Homemade Solstice Decorations

Over the years my wife has handmade a number of our decorations and this year she made a number of craft faux porcelain decorations to put on our trees.  Once dried in the oven, they can be hand painted and have a porcelain-like appearance.  Once fully cured, they don’t break easy and can be placed outside without worry about getting damp.

Homemade "faux" Porcelain Solstice Stars

Homemade “faux” Porcelain Solstice Stars

 

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December 18, 2017: Solstice Challenge – The Gingerbread Mountain Of Gold Hoard

My wife had an inspiration a short while ago when contemplating which Gingerbread house to make for the grandkids.  As we were talking she thought of making a Gingerbread “Mountain” with gold coins inside that would tumble out when the grandkids began to take the sides off.  The idea originally came from an Ikea gift bag that provided an idea for window covers but morphed into the Gingerbread “mountain of gold” idea.

Soon the Gingerbread dough was made, cut into appropriate shapes, baked, cooled, icing applied in appropriate colors, and Royal icing used to “glue” to hold the mountain together.  Once the mountain was constructed and dried, gold chocolate coins were dropped down the top until the inside of the mountain was chock full of luscious chocolate gold coins.  Final touch ups with the royal icing, allowed to dry completely and then placed under a glass dome.  Here’s a link to my wife’s post where she is much more eloquent than I about the Gingerbread Mountain.

It’s magnificent to say the least!  The grandkids saw it for the first time this weekend and immediately called it “Elsa’s Castle”.  We can’t wait to “open” Elsa’s Castle on Solstice eve (after dinner on Wednesday).  And, the grandkids will be completely surprised when they pull a triangle off and the chocolate coins come tumbling out!

When you lift the glass dome you’re absolutely entranced by the gingerbread aroma…it’s simple a fantastic aroma.

The image is a crazy diorama of sorts with Matryoshka dolls on either side and our old German coffee grinder looking down.  The Matryoshka dolls in the background were featured in a previous post a short while ago and the two in the front are the “self-righting” types when tilted over.

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December 17, 2017: Solstice Challenge – Espresso, Anyone?

Yes, we live in the Pacific Northwest…espresso is everywhere, even on our tree!

Espresso, Anyone?

Espresso, Anyone?

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December 16, 2017: Solstice Challenge – The Three Bears

Bears seem to be the theme and rightly so as I have a fascination with bears in general. These three bears came from Leavenworth some years ago and are always on our tree.

The Three Bears

The Three Bears

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December 15, 2017: Solstice Challenge – The Bear Ice Sculpture

Today’s image is one from Berlin in the mid-1970s – a little brown bear chiseling an ice Bear sculpture.  Another favorite as you can imagine.  I love the look on the brown bear’s face and the fine details in the ice sculpture.

A Brown Bear chiseling an Ice Bear sculpture

A Brown Bear chiseling an Ice Bear sculpture

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