Ambrosia Fudge

Pretty little candies, perfect for afternoon tea!Image

Ambrosia Fudge

Makes about 36 pieces of fudge

Orange-flavored white chocolate fudge studded with dried fruits and coconut.

2/3 c. evaporated milk

1 2/3 c. granulated white sugar

3 T. unsalted butter

2 c. miniature marshmallows

7 1/2 oz. real white chocolate, chopped

2 t. orange extract

1/3 c. chopped dried apricots

1/3 c. chopped dried cherries

1/3 sweetened flaked coconut

  1. Spray an 8” square baking pan with vegetable oil. Line pan with heavy duty aluminum foil, allowing foil to drape over sides of pan. Spray foil with vegetable oil. Set aside.
  2. In a 2 qt. non-stick saucepan, combine evaporated milk, sugar and butter. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring frequently. Boil for 4 to 5 minutes or until the mixture reaches the soft ball stage.* Remove from heat.
  3. Immediately stir in marshmallows, white chocolate, orange extract, apricots and coconut. Beat vigorously with a mixing spoon about 3 to 5 minutes until glossy and the only lumps are from the fruit,.
  4. Spread mixture evenly into pan. Cool in the refrigerator for one hour.
  5. Remove fudge from pan by lifting out the aluminum foil. Pull foil away from fudge and then inspect to make sure that no bits of aluminum foil are stuck in the candy. Using a sharp, heavy knife, cut fudge into pieces.
  • Soft ball stage in candy making is 235 to 240 degrees F.  At this stage, a spoonful of the candy mixture dropped into cold water will form a soft ball.

Note: To store fudge, line an airtight container with waxed paper. Arrange the fudge pieces in the container. If you need to stack the pieces of fudge, place wax paper between layers. Top with waxed paper and then the lid to the container. Store in the refrigerator. Allow to come to room temperature in the air tight container before serving.

Beautiful Blood Orange Margarita


Happy National Margarita Day (February 22nd)! To commemorate the occasion, here is the recipe for a beautiful and delicious Blood Orange Margarita.  Salud!

Blood Orange Margarita

2 oz. anejo tequila

1 oz. orange liqueur

juice from 1 blood orange

juice from 1 lime

lime slice for garnish

edible flower for garnish

1. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add tequila, orange liqueur, blood orange juice and lime juice. Shake well to chill and to mix ingredients.

2. Strain into a margarita glass. Garnish with lime and flower.

Enjoy, but please don’t drink and drive!

Dried Marilyn

With a day so gorgeous, I decided it was worth a second post. This picture is of a Marilyn Monroe rose dried on the bush. I leave the flowers on my rose bushes at the end of the gardening season as a reminder that once winter passes, they shall bloom lushly once again.


I hope that you, too, are getting to enjoy the weekend!

Siberian Iris Seedpods

Today is just one of those winter days to be treasured. The sky is an intense cyan blue; and with temperatures in the mid-50’s F,  it feels almost balmy. I had to take the opportunity to go out into my garden and take some photos. This was my favorite of the afternoon.


Have a beautiful day!

Stalwart Watcher

I’ll confess – I didn’t want to spend too much time taking photos outside today. I’m more of a fair-weather photographer. The rain, sleet and hail, have done a good job of turning into snow – for now; but I thought that I’d share this shot from earlier today, when, we were still having a bit of everything coming down. Brrr … what a cold, gray, wet day. Ah, how nice to be back inside with some hot tea! 


Well, That’s Kansas Weather …

Just a few days ago, it was nearly 70 F degrees here in Manhattan, and the balmy temperatures melted away almost all of our snow. But so far today we have had thunder, hail, rain, snow and sleet; and yet it is supposed to go up to 47 here this afternoon. Well, that’s Kansas weather for you. At least we aren’t getting hit by the blizzard that has moved in to the west of us!


Wherever you are, may your day be lovely!

Gallery Page

In honor of Valentine’s Day, I just published a gallery of photos from some of the weddings that we have had the honor of hosting at The Morning Star. Unfortunately, I don’t have photos from all of the weddings, but I hope that you enjoy the images that we do have. Since most of our weddings are garden weddings, the gallery includes lots of garden photos.


Valentines’ Mocha

A special after-dinner coffee made with dark chocolate and chocolate vodka. Don’t forget to dip your strawberry in the whipped cream before drinking! Happy Valentine’s Day!


Valentines’ Mocha (serves 2)

1 c. fresh-brewed, good decaf coffee

1 oz. dark chocolate

1 oz. chocolate vodka

1 T. dark brown sugar

1/4 c. heavy cream

2 large, ripe strawberries (cleaned and stemmed)

cinnamon sugar

1. Place coffee, chocolate, vodka and dark brown sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir occasionally until chocolate and brown sugar are melted and blended into the coffee.

2. Meanwhile, whip cream until it holds soft peaks.

3. Pour coffee into two glass coffee mugs. Garnish mugs with strawberries. Top with whipped cream and cinnamon sugar. Serve immediately. Enjoy!