Archive for the ‘Recipes’ Category

A Grand Excursion Awaits!

April 26, 2011

This Atlantic Maritime tour is truly a grand excursion. As a visitor you will do more than just witness this unique way of life – you will live it!  Enjoy simple pleasures, breathtaking vistas, stories, music and wonderful recipes.  History will come alive as you tour Louisbourg, literature becomes real as you tour “Anne of Green Gables”.  Lighthouses and miles of white sand and red cliffs abound.  All this beauty is just waiting for you to enjoy on this escorted vacation to another, more gentle, way of life.

Riding the ferry and feeling the ocean breeze is a sure cure for whatever ailment you may have.   You’ll find you have more spring in your step and a clearer more joyful outlook.

While visiting the historic places you will discover the legacy which has been left for us all to learn from and appreciate. They show the important relationship Aboriginal people had with the land, the patterns of settlement established by Europeans, the impact of centuries of farming and fishing, and the faith that sustained many in building their communities. Each historic place conveys the sense of accomplishment and pride of generations of Islanders. There is so much to see and experience for those visiting.

I’m sure by now you know that I am a true “foodie” – so here’s the deal on the food. The food will simply delight you, as will the simple joy found in most of the natives who prepare it.  Everywhere you go you’ll find lobster, scallops, mussels and oysters–just a few of the seafood delicacies Prince Edward Island (PEI) is famous for worldwide. The New York Times food critic, Frank Bruni, visited the Island recently in search of the freshest of fresh shellfish, noting, “This is where the oysters that go by the designations or labels Malpeque, Raspberry Point and Colville Bay originate. This is what the initials PEI in front of a mussel mean. A PEI mussel is like Niman Ranch pork: a brand with real clout, a boast restaurateurs itch to make.”  Enjoy them, savor them and have some for me – they are one of my absolute favorites!!

PEI Coat of Arms

I found this recipe taken from the Royal Winter Fair. In partnership with the award-winning Culinary Institute of Canada and the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, they welcomed the opportunity to tell you more about their products and how they can be best prepared for your enjoyment.  Bon Appetit!

PEI Crab or PEI Lobster Cakes

1 egg 2 tbsp mayonnaise 1 tbsp Dijon mustard 2 tsp dry mustard 2 tbsp parsley, finely chopped 2 tbsp scallions, finely chopped juice of one lemon 1½ lb PEI crab meat or PEI lobster meat 1 cup fresh bread crumbs salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste oil or clarified butter for frying Combine first 6 ingredients in a bowl and mix thoroughly. Season with lemon juice. Add remaining ingredients and mix until just combined. Season with salt and pepper. Form into 8 patties. Heat oil or butter in frying pan and fry on both sides until golden brown or bake in a 350ºF oven for 5 to 10 minutes. Makes 8 servings. I’m making these for a dinner party – let me know if you make them and how they were received.

With your free time in Charlottetown you may want to seek out a truly unique Island experience by becoming a lobster fisherman for the day. Embark on an adventure from the Charlottetown Harbour aboard the Top Notch - an authentic lobster boat with a genuine lobster fishing crew. Enjoy lobster on board.  There are three trips daily.  Call Mark at 902-626-6689 (T) to get the details.

Prince Edward Island offers a complete range of affordable and accessible golf experiences. Nine- and 18-hole courses are located across the province. The total now numbers 34. Golfers can book their tee-off times online at www.golfpei.ca. Golf season on the Island runs from May through October. Guaranteed tee-off times can be arranged by calling the courses directly. If golf is your game, here is an opportunity to play on some of the most beautiful courses and boast to friends that you shot a !!! on the back nine on PEI!!

THE ISLAND WAY OF LIFE fosters creativity in its people, and as you explore PEI, you will soon understand why so many artists find inspiration in the gentle Island landscape. Nature forms the foundation of fine creations such as earthy pottery in Breadalbane, the graceful lines of contemporary woodwork in Rustico, or colorful paintings of Island scenes throughout PEI. A PEI Studio Tour offers you the chance to watch artisans at work. You may even want to put your own talents to the test if you sign up for one of the Once in a Lifetime Experiences. Looking for sophisticated glass in a stylish setting? Want some hand-knit mittens made from Island wool? How about a painting or print that captures the special Island light? The gifts and souvenirs available on Prince Edward Island vary as widely as the waves on the ocean. I hope the ones you take home will remind you of your very special mini-vacation with Interlude to this gentle and lovely Island.

Yes, you might get your hands dirty. You might even get your shoes wet. And your knees stained. Maybe you’ll even get a little windburn or sunburn.  All this will just make your Island experiences more memorable and more fun in the retelling. Please check out the full itinerary which is running twice, once in July and once in August. You are guaranteed a meaningful experience and a terrific good time.

Atlantic Maritimes (click here for itinerary)
(10 days, 9 nights)

Eadie
– Interlude blog team

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Deep In the Heart of Texas

November 8, 2010

Along the San Antonio River, you won’t see any rustic gambling boats or anything close to it. Instead you’ll find tropical walkways, gourmet restaurants and rare boutique shops lining the banks of the peaceful river. In May 2009, the new Museum Reach portion of the Riverwalk opened featuring over one mile of new Riverwalk footage, beautiful landscaping and lighting at night. It begins at the Holiday Inn El Tropicano Riverwalk Hotel and ends at the Pearl Brewery Complex just South of Brackenridge Park. On the new Museum Reach of the Riverwalk you will find the beautiful San Antonio Museum of Art, a lock system for the river boats, and the oldest VFW Post in the State of Texas. It is a gorgeous portion of the Riverwalk to enjoy in a boat or on a leisurely walk, be sure to take in as much as you can during your San Antonio adventure.

Every day of this escorted vacation is full of new and exciting things to see and do. Among my personal favorites is the LBJ Library and Ranch. Did you know that Lyndon Johnson’s first career was as a teacher and principal of a Mexican-American school in Cotulla, Texas. He later taught debate in Houston. The Texas White House was officially opened to the public on August 27, 2008. At this time, rooms available for public tours include the President’s Office, living room, and dining room, restored to their 1963-1968 appearance. The remainder of the home is still undergoing restoration. The focal piece of the LBJ Ranch is the LBJ Ranch House, the home of President Johnson and a center of political activity for more than 20 years. Leaders from around the world visited the Johnsons there, and during the Johnson Administration it became known as the Texas White House. President Johnson was the first President to create a functioning White House away from Washington. The Texas White House was donated to the National Park Service in 1972 and after the Johnson’s death in 1973, Mrs. Johnson continued to live at the Ranch part time until her death in 2007. Mrs. Johnson kept on display many of the gifts they received while in public service. The Texas White House is “a house full of gifts that’s a gift to our nation.” Another political tidbit – Lyndon Johnson was the first candidate in history to campaign by helicopter. Known as “The Johnson City Windmill,” it was used during his second bid for the U.S. Senate in 1948.

There is nothing quite like a visit to the Alamo and the IMAX movie make this lore-filled experience even better. Be sure to keep a look out for the beautiful Texas bluebonnets as you travel from destination to destination.

Once you get home from your Texas tour you might want to host a Texan Ranch theme party when showing all your incredible photos to your friends. When hosting your party I have a few recipes that should help you capture the style and flair of an authentic Texas ranch. First send out your invitations about a month in advance and ask your guest to “dress” cowboy style. It’s amazing how coming in costume just about guarantees a great time. Secondly, find some old country music that just feels Texan – you might even contact a square dance group or caller to teach your guests the Texas Two Step. Such fun!! Third, serve your meal buffet style so that tables can be easily moved to get ready for the dancing. And finally – if your time and energy allows play a few hands of Texas Hold-‘em poker!! Remember, Texans do everything in a BIG way so just let your imagination run wild. Your Interlude in the Heart of Texas will give you plenty to draw from. Below are some great recipes that are truly authentic Texas Tidbits.

Crowd- Pleasing Chili
A great crowd pleaser, and good for Texans who refuse to put beans in their chili.
• 3 lbs beef brisket cut into 1/4 inch cubes
• 1 cubanelle pepper chopped
• 3 tablespoons olive oil
• 1/2 lb ground pork
• 1 tablespoon cumin
• 5 tablespoons chili powder
• 1/4 teaspoon oregano
• 6 garlic chopped
• 1 large onion chopped
• 1 teaspoon dry mustard
• 1 small can plain tomato sauce
• 1 cup canned whole tomatoes
• 1 small can chopped mild green chilis
• 1 small can chopped HOT green chilis
• 1 beef bouillon packet
• 2 teaspoons brown sugar
• 1 can beer
• 1/4 cup bourbon
• 1/4 cup tequila

Texas Peach Cobbler
1/2 cup margarine
3/4 cups all purpose flour
pinch of salt
2 cups sliced peaches
2 cups sugar ( divided )
2 tsp. baking powder
3/4 cup milk

Melt butter in a 2 quart baking dish. Combine 1 cup sugar, flour,
baking powder, and salt. Add milk, and stir until mixed. Pour batter
over butter in baking dish, but do not stir. Combine peaches, and
remaining sugar, and spoon over batter, but do not stir.
Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.

Check out the itinerary for Interlude’s Spring Fiesta, buy a pair of boots and grab a cowboy hat and be prepared to thoroughly enjoy your adventures in The Lone Star State. Just remember that the first word spoken from the moon on July 20,1969 was “Houston” – true Texans won’t ever let you forget it!

San Anonio Spring Fiesta (click here for itinerary)
April 13-17, 2011 (5 days, 4 nights)  

Eadie
– Interlude blog team  

•For immediate service, please call (317) 913-0387 or email us
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M is for ….a 5 star holiday

July 8, 2010

 

M is for…

M is for Morven Park Mansion, Monticello, Montpelier,  music and dancing -  and making cookies!  M is for meeting, meandering, mulling over hot tea and making new memories. M is for this MARVELOUS holiday tour to the Homestead Resort nestled in the mountains of Virginia. What better way to rest up before the holiday madness than at the healing springs of this elegant resort and join a guest list that includes princes and presidents!

The Morven Park estate, 1,000 acres just west of Leesburg, Virginia, was home to two governors: Thomas Swann, a governor of Maryland in the 19th century, and Virginia’s reform Governor Westmoreland Davis. The mansion evolved from a fieldstone farmhouse in 1781 to its present turn-of-the-century appearance. It is actually three structures moved together. Entering through a Greek Revival portico, you will see a Renaissance great hall, a Jacobean dining room, a French drawing room, a library and a display which highlights the life and times of Governor Davis. Because the Davis’ traveled widely, the furnishings are of varied styles and eras, including 16th century Flemish tapestries, Renaissance and neo-Renaissance pieces, l’art nouveau, silver and glass, fine paintings and porcelain figurines.   All dressed in its holiday décor, the mansion is a wonderful beginning to this holiday happening.

Monticello is an incredible tribute to the genius that was Thomas Jefferson.
Every visit provides another astounding tribute to the brilliance of this forefather. Be sure to notice the portico on the east front. The ceiling of this portico incorporates a wind plate connected to a weather vane showing the direction of the wind.   Also a large clock face on the external east-facing wall has only an hour hand since Jefferson thought this was accurate enough for outdoor laborers. The clock reflects the time shown on the “Great Clock”, designed by Jefferson, in the entrance hall. I am a clock person and find these little tidbits fascinating.

Nestled in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Orange, Virginia, Montpelier was the lifelong home of James Madison. Madison was raised at Montpelier, lived there after his marriage to Dolley, returned there after his presidency, and died there in his study surrounded by the books and papers that marked so much of his life’s work. It was at Montpelier where Madison researched past democracies and conceived of the system of government that became our republic.  A true patriot, his home is a great reflection of the man and his time.  Located in the shadow of the Blue Ridge Mountains, you have an opportunity to spend some time learning more about the man whose contemporaries called “Father of the Constitution,” and the woman who inspired the title “First Lady.”  Dolley’s recipe for bouillion is truly a keeper.

Ingredients:
1 Pound(s) Beef stew meat
1 Beef knuckle
1 Cup(s) Chopped carrot
1/2 Cup(s) Chopped onion
1/2 Cup(s) Chopped turnip
1/2 Cup(s) Snipped parsley
2 Tablespoon(s) Salt
1/8 Tablespoon(s) Cayenne
Directions:
In large saucepan or Dutch oven, combine stew meat, beef knuckle, carrot,
onion, turnip, parsley, salt, cayeene, and 12 cups water. cover; simmer 2
hours. Strain the broth. Season to taste. Serve hot. Makes 10 servings.

The highlight of this holiday happening is the Homestead Resort. While there you’ll have the opportunity to attend a cookie making class, and visit the indoor mineral pool and spa – decadent!  If you choose you also have a Holiday Decoration Class available to you.  The Homestead also offers a wide variety of specialty shops with unique items, local fare and apparel for that last minute Christmas shopping!  The dining facilities are exquisite as well.

The European-style Spa at The Homestead is among the nation’s most historic retreats, well-known for its naturally heated healing springs. The spa menu offers pampering and rejuvenating treatments  using local indigenous ingredients which include the Mineral Springs Mud Wrap; Sunflower Soak with Buttercup Bath; the Southern Harvest Apricot & Sweet Vanilla Wrap and the Virginia Dogwood Pedicure.  This could easily be a Christmas present from you to you.  The authentic Jefferson Pools are a relaxing retreat for both mind and body featuring natural mineral spring waters. The pools are named for the third president, who journeyed to The Homestead for three weeks in 1818, and soaked in the spring waters of the Gentleman’s Pool House, which was built in 1761, and remains largely the same today as when it first opened. The inside pool, listed on the National Register of Historic Places and a Virginia Historic Landmark, is about 120 feet in circumference, and holds 40,000 gallons of constantly flowing, crystal clear, mineral spring water. It is considered the oldest spa structure in America.

In June 1836, a separate Ladies Pool House was opened at the Jefferson Pools, fed by another spring whose waters have the same properties as those which supply the adjacent Gentlemen’s Pool House. The crystal clear spring waters at the Jefferson Pools are rich in minerals, and are a constant 98 degrees at their source – perfect, natural body temperature. “Taking the waters” at the Jefferson Pools continues to be a favorite activity today, and I strongly encourage you to visit the pools while at the Resort.

When booking this escorted vacation, you join a list of distinguished guests which include twenty-two American Presidents. Other famous names that have been drawn to The Homestead over the years include those of royalty, captains of industry and high-society – among them the Windsors, Astors, Rockefellers and DuPonts, as well as J. P. Morgan, Thomas Edison, Harvey Firestone and Henry Ford and – YOU.

I guarantee that after experiencing this wonderfully paced tour, you will be filled with the holiday spirit – relaxed –rejuvenated – refreshed.  I truly hope you treat yourself to this well-planned adventure as a gift to yourself.

The Homestead Resort’s 5-Star Christmas (click here for itinerary)
(5 days, 4 nights)

Eadie
– Interlude blog team

•For immediate service, please call (317) 913-0387 or email us
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Weekend in the Big Apple!

May 27, 2010

New York City is hoppin’ all year around and even though we may love Paris in the springtime –there is absolutely nothing like September in the Big Apple!   We’ll start off with a breathtaking panoramic view of New York City from the newly renovated Observation Deck on the 70th floor of 30 Rockefeller Plaza. From this magnificent vantage point you’ll see Central Park and the northern half of Manhattan, a view that can’t be found anywhere else. New York’s other landmarks are visible as well, including the Chrysler Building, Times Square, the Hudson River, the East River, the Brooklyn Bridge, and the Statue of Liberty. This trip is a four-day, three night east coast whirlwind adventure. Lot’s to see and loads to do in one of the most exciting cities in America.      

Top of the Rock

Top of the Rock

Even if we were not offering wonderful sightseeing, a Broadway show, Times Square and Ground Zero, the food in New York City is almost worth the trip. From Jewish Deli’s to Chinatown, and everything in between to tempt your palate.  If you were not lucky enough to grow up with an Italian grandmother (Nonno) you will adore the Italian hospitality found at both Carmine’s and Pasticceria Rocco, both featured on this trip.  Known for their generous portions these casual eateries will make you think you’re dining at Nonno’s.  May I suggest starting off with a Belini – Prosecco, Carmine’s Private Label, Valdobbiene, Italy, NV, soft and delicate Italian champagne with peach and citrus – molto benne.   

One of the recipes on the menu at Carmine’s is Chicken Scarpariello which means ‘chicken shoemaker-style.’ It is an interesting name because the lowest compliment you can pay a French chef is to say, ‘He cooks like a shoemaker.’ I feel quite differently: and think that the name implies a true compliment. Scarpariello, may well have been a testament to the resourcefulness of our Italian immigrants who achieved seductive flavor from few ingredients.  I’ve attached my recipe and hope it’s close to the one served at Carmine’s. I’ve never seen it in an Italian restaurant in Indy so this could be a culinary adventure.   

 

Eadie’s Chicken Scarpariello Recipe (Click here)   

I do get carried away by food!  Check back in a few weeks for some suggestions for getting the most out of your free time in NYC.  It’s a fabulous town.   

These are only a few of the highlights! As you’ve seen on our blog, each of our escorted vacations is completely packed full of amazing attractions, breathtaking vistas, and surprises of all kinds. So please take a look at the itinerary details!   

New York City, Fun in the Big Apple (click here for itinerary)
(4 days, 3 nights)   

All of these tours have the following things in common:   

Eadie
– Interlude blog team 

The Interlude Tours Blog Team 

•For immediate service, please call (317) 913-0387 or email us
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