Sunday, January 04, 2009
Of snow and snow and jackrabbits...
It's been one of those winters when I'm sure I know what it must be like to live in the Arctic Circle. We're northerners who are used to tough winters, but so far, this one's been a doozy. Not only is there plenty of snow, but plenty of cold to go with it. Most nights the temperature sinks below the Zero Mark and most days do not reach 20*. Just 55 miles south of us, there is no snow and people actually know what Freezing (32* F) feels like. In the picture above, our eldest son is moving snow away from his house which is on the west side of the shelter belt from us. They've been literally buried in snow drifts. The attachment on the back of the tractor is a snow blower which uses a couple rotary gizmos to suck up the snow and then blows it out the side. It's fun to watch.
I took a good walk on my snowshoes today. The temp was just at 20 degrees and the sun was shining so I bundled up and trudged around on the snow drifts near the shelter belts, trying to keep out of the wind. By the end of my walk, I was working up a sweat. Above, do you see two ears sticking up? (click to enlarge)
The jackrabbits have moved in closer to the shelter belts and buildings for protection and food. They scamper all over the place and really give our dogs chase. Here, I've caught Peter Rabbit in mid-hop.
Here and there amongst the snowdrifts, you'll find a hole like this where jackrabbits will literally "hole up" for the night. Likely more than one will be in this deep hole.
Walking on the high drifts of snow, I feel like I'm a little closer to touching the moon! And how about that clear, blue sky?
I took this picture because I can see that there's been a rabbit slumber party going on here. See all the tracks together and all the digging? Now upon closer look.....
....you can see where they've dug-in a little bit for shelter to keep out of the wind and cold. It doesn't take much of a hole for them to cuddle up and stay warm. The snow was much softer here and would be easier to tunnel in for the night.
After a good, hearty walk, I treated myself to Affogato. I know, I didn't know what that was either until just a few days ago when the UPS man brought my new cookbook: Barefoot Contessa Back To Basics by Ina Garten. Oh, what glorious recipes are in this book! I've never owned one of Ina Garten's books, but I'm thrilled with this one. You'll find Affogato Sundaes in the dessert section. Here's the simple *recipe* (altered to what I have on hand).
2 scoops of vanilla ice cream
2 t. Bailey's Irish Creme (or Kahlua) - opt.
2 T. (or more) of hot espresso
Chocolate-covered espresso beans - opt.
Scoop ice cream into a bowl and pour over the Irish Creme, Espresso and sprinkle with chocolate-covered coffee beans. Top with whipped cream and serve with hot coffee! I made this one other night and only used espresso over the ice cream, no choco-covered beans, and no whipped cream. It was excellent that way too. Try it!
(If your making espresso with a regular electric coffee maker, use 1/3 c. ground espresso and 4 c. water)
Day is done.
Happy New Year!