“From the open kitchen door flooded light, and mouth-watering smells of bacon and coffee.”
The above quote is from Rosamunde Pilcher’s novel Winter Solstice. I love the way she describes living. She gets it. That there is beauty in the most simplistic things. There are smells that remind you of home, of comfort and security. Maybe it’s the calming peace of piano music playing in the background of daily life. Drinking coffee or cocoa on a cold morning by the fire. The good times. The times we try to get back to when things rush out of control.
In this season of rushing and doing those moments seem few and far between. There are lists to check off and places to be. We have obligations and responsibilities. Not to mention sick kids, pageant rehearsals and goodies to bake. But what if we decide to start each day with just a little bit of peace.
Peace! Wouldn’t that be better than any surprise in an Advent Calendar? To give your family the gift of peace each morning. Just imagine with me an alternate reality for a moment. You wake up first, the coffee is on and you cook something easy but tantalizing bacon or cinnamon rolls. Something that will welcome your family’s waking. As others rise you hug them and say, “I love you.” You tell them your plan to start each day with peace on earth, goodwill toward man. They smile and say, “Mom, you’re a cornball, but I’ll try.” Even if you fail they’ll remember the year you tried this crazy scheme to start each day peacefully.
Maybe I am dreaming. But I think it’s worth a shot. Shouldn’t we strive for the ideal home life. I’m not asking for Norman Rockwell. I like the nitty grittiness of life it makes me laugh. What I’m promoting is a little bubble of peace to start your day. Let’s appreciate the day we’ve been given. It’s all we have.
Below is Ina Garten’s recipe. I want to give this to my family this week.
Croissant Bread Pudding
Prep Time:10 min
Cook Time:1 hr 30 min
8 to 10 servings
3 extra-large whole eggs
8 extra-large egg yolks
5 cups half-and-half
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
6 croissants, preferably stale
1 cup raisins
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the whole eggs, egg yolks, half-and-half, sugar, and vanilla. Set the custard mixture aside. Slice the croissants in half horizontally. In a 10 by 15 by 2 1/2-inch oval baking dish, distribute the bottoms of the sliced croissants, then add the raisins, then the tops of the croissants (brown side up), being sure the raisins are between the layers of croissants or they will burn while baking. Pour the custard over the croissants and allow to soak for 10 minutes, pressing down gently.
Place the pan in a larger one filled with 1-inch of hot water. Cover the larger pan with aluminum foil, tenting the foil so it doesn’t touch the pudding. Cut a few holes in the foil to allow steam to escape. Bake for 45 minutes. Uncover and bake for 40 to 45 more minutes or until the pudding puffs up and the custard is set. Remove from the oven and cool slightly. Serve warm or at room temperature.