Tuesday, June 14, 2011

What We Do While We Wait - More Food

For those of you who love dessert, this is one delicious, easy, melt-in-your-mouth, full-of-sweet-goodness, recipe!

Off the top, let me say that I love to garden and pull weeds and pick things and can those things.  I love to see a dried up little seed grow into a lush, harvest bearing plant, then pick and store up that food for my family and friends.  I am certain I could write an entire book on the theology of gardening.  So, for this recipe, I canned apple pie filling last fall.  It was the first time I had ever thought of doing that (with the suggestion of a friend) and it was EASY and boy, were we all glad I had done it when the COLD, dreary winter days were upon us.  You can completely skip this step and buy apple pie filling from the store or cook apples right at the time you decide to make these - assuming you will make these.  You would be crazy not to try them at least once.  TRUST me on this one.

If anyone is interested in the recipe for apple pie filling, please let me know.  I'm going to skip that step here, but will be happy to pass it along.  It is EASYas long as you have a few simple tools to do the job.

Anyway . . . You will need some form of this:

I highly recommend that you find an orchard near you this July and go pick some Yellow Transparent or Lodi apples and can a dozen quarts of this.  You will not regret it for a single second.  Again I say, TRUST me.  If you are time challenged, however, you can run to the store and grab some Granny Smith's and whip up a single batch for the following recipe.  Let me know and I can send you a good recipe.

Here we go . . .

First, you'll need to gather the ingredients.  You need:  apple pie filling, puff pastry sheets, one egg - beaten and ready to use with a pastry brush, butter, cinnamon sugar, powdered sugar, a little bit of milk and vanilla.

Next, preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Thaw puff pastry until it is pliable enough to unfold.  On a clean, smooth counter or similar smooth surface, unfold puff pastry sheets, and repair any cracks by pressing them back together. Gently roll sheet to enlarge it about an inch in each direction.  Be careful not to smash it too much - GENTLY roll until each sheet is in the shape of a square.  Then cut each larger square into 4 smaller squares.

Spoon apples onto the center of each square. Place a few dots of butter on top of apples and then sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.  Take the egg wash and with your finger or a small pastry brush, paint the egg along the sides of the pastry sheet.  This acts as a "glue" to hold the pastry together better.  Fold over from corner to corner into a triangle shape, and press edges together to seal. Place turnovers on parchment paper on a baking sheet, leaving about 1 inch between them. Gently paint egg wash over the tops of triangles and sprinkle with additional cinnamon sugar.

Bake for 20-25 minutes in the preheated oven, until turnovers are puffed and lightly browned.

Now . . . for the glaze . . .  Please don't skip this step.  Please.

To make the glaze, mix together about 2 cups of the confectioners' sugar, a tablespoon or two of milk and 1 teaspoon of vanilla in a small bowl. Adjust the thickness by adding more sugar or milk if necessary. Glaze should be thin enough that you can drizzle from a fork.  Next, drizzle.  Drizzle.drizzle.drizzle.  I drizzle over warm turnovers.  Some recipes say to wait until turnovers are cool, but believe me when I say, you want to eat this sweet, gooey, flaky delight while it is warm.  

Are you ready?

Just hot from the oven:

Drizzling . . .

Serve to the smiling, longing, drooling faces surrounding you.  You won't have to call them if they are anywhere within nose-shot of your kitchen.  Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and you will have them wrapped around your finger for days.

Do not expect leftovers unless you are crafty and can figure out a way to hide one for later consumption.  My favorite spot is the pantry.  At night.  When all the little darlings (and one big darling) are fast asleep.  Some day I'll tell you about whole pecans dipped in Nutella.  In the pantry.  At night.

Have a great day!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Still Waiting!

Well . . . we are still waiting! :-( June 3 marked . . .

. . . months of being DTE (Dossier to Ethiopia).  We are SOOOO very close to getting our referral.  KILLING ME!!!  We are both trying to stay busy (NOT difficult, believe me), keep our eyes and hearts turned to and focused on God, and believing that the ONE who has called us to this is exceedingly, abundantly able to do more than we can think or imagine.  It has in the most blessed way caused us to keep our eyes fixed on him.  Caused us to pray more and better and to TRUST that He is working ALL things together for good.  ALL things.  Not just on the adoption front, but in every tiny detail of our lives.

I was reminded by a cousin-in-law this past Sunday that God already knows the outcome.  He has had the exact children for our family decided from the beginning of time.  His timing and the orchestration of events is happening now in ways we may never see or even be able to imagine this side of heaven.  Our job is to pray and BELIEVE that He has it.  He has it.

I will be completely candid and say that for several months now I have been playing the game of shoving all thoughts of this adoption out of my mind. The idea of waiting and waiting since the slow down kills me.  The idea that there are children sitting in an orphanage somewhere WAITING for paperwork to be done so they can be placed in a HOME and a forever family kills me.  The thought that people who could expedite that paperwork will not or cannot kills me.  So, over time, I've begun to realize that I have stopped believing that God can or will make this all come together.  That He who called us to this really cares how or if it will all turn out. 

And then this . . .

From that unbelief, I realized that for so long I have functioned in my own strength.  I pray, but I'm not sure I really believe he hears or cares.  I pray, but I don't lay it all out there.  I don't want to burden him with my deal.  Make any sense???  Like . . . He's got enough going on without adding more to His plate.  Somewhere along the way I went from a little girl who BELIEVED He loved me and CARED about every detail of my life and LOVED to tell Him about every detail to a woman who read too many books and heard way too many academic sermons and lost the ability to TALK to my ABBA.

I realized a few weeks ago that I have been praying for Him to restore that desire and belief in me.  Even while praying not being sure I believed He would.  But, He has.  In an incredible way.  In this way - THY WILL be done.  In this adoption, in our family life (immediate and extended), in our marriage, in our homeschool, in our ministry.  Thy will be done.  And you know what?  It feels free and terrifying all at the same time.  To pray it and say it and mean it.  To really mean it.  Take my life - our lives, we pray together - and use them for your glory and your kingdom.  The stuff?  Use it for your glory.   Our time?  Use it for your glory.  Career?  For your glory.  Help us to be completely done with my way - our way - and have our eyes fixed firmly on you.  Scares the pants off me.  But there is no other way to go beyond with Him.  To move past the ordinary, safe, in my own strength kind of living.  No other way.

And so, we are waiting.  :-)  Expectantly and with great hope.  Knowing without a doubt that it will come together in exactly the way and time and place that He ordains.