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Winter

Winters mood!! For most of us winter brings the fun and celebration of the holidays. But with that, comes a whole host of others things along with it. Colder weather, illness, stress, shorter days, gray skies, so many things that can alter our mood and our mindset. It is always about what we allow in to bother us that is the biggest issue, not necessarily what is going on around us.


There are so many wonderful things about the winter season, the colder temperatures can bring us rain and snow, so many benefits from the water they bring. Now I understand that anything in its extreme can be harmful or damaging, but that conversation will be another time. Right now we are just talking about the normal winter conditions. The cold, the wind, the conditions, the lack of sunshine, no leaves not he trees , everything around us going dormant for a few months. But do we all understand that this has been going on for billions of years, it is not personal. When we don't see and feel our seasons is when we need to worry!!! There are so many outdoor activities to do, so many indoor activities to do, indoor projects we can accomplish, maybe even a bit of hibernation is needed, more time to yourself, turning inward a bit, so good for the soul.


Maybe it is time to learn some new winter habits, new winter activities, new winter foods and recipes to try. Embrace more about what winter has to give, not what winter takes away. We need to see its beauty, every year, learn something new, see something new, hear something new, do something new. You might be surprised at what you can find out about yourself?!


So much more to share about winter, join me here and savor the season!!


Focaccia (for the holidays, or any day)


Ingredients:


4 cups all purpose flour or bread flour. *If using gluten free flour just remember that the texture will be different

2 tsp kosher salt

2 tsp instant yeast *if using active-dry yeast sprinkle it over the lukewarm water and let it stand for about 15 minutes or until it gets foamy; then proceed with he recipe

2 cups lukewarm water

4 tbsp olive oil, divided

1-2 rosemary sprigs

1 container grape tomatoes, cut in half.*You may not need to use all of them also optional.


Directions:


For the dough, using a large bowl whisk together the flour, salt and instant yeast. Add the water.

Using a rubber spatula mix until the liquid is absorbed and you get a sticky dough ball.

Rub the surface of the dough ball with the 2 tbsp olive oil.

Cover the bowl with a damp tea towel, or cloth, place it in the refrigerator immediately for at least 12 hours, or you can keep there for up to three days.

When ready to bake, line a 9x13 pan with parchment paper, or grease it with clarified butter.

Pour the remaining 2 tbsp olive oil in the middle of the pan.

Using two forks deflate the dough by pulling it toward the center of the bowl. Rotate the bowl 1/4 turns as you deflate, turning the mass into a rough ball.

Place the ball in the center of the pan and roll it in the oil to coat it all over, let it rest for 3-4 hours.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

cover the dough with a little more olive oil, then put some on your hands and press the dough out to fill the pan, flat. Lay the rosemary and tomatoes on the top.

Put in the oven on the middles rack and bake for 25-30 minutes, until the underside is crisp and golden. Remove when done and let cool 10 minutes before cutting.




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