A Very Special Rose Garden


However much we may learn of chlorophyl, chromogen, and colour-cells – the pigments of nature that are made from the earth and rain, air and sun,


Pamela Temple rose garden 1

somewhere in the dark habitation of the roots and the airy galleries of the leaves – we do not know why the same ingredients clothe one petal with flame and another with blue.


Pamela Temple rose garden 2

Colour, like fragrance, is intimately connected with light; and between the different rays of the spectrum and the colour-cells of plants there is a strange telepathy. 



These processes, so little explored, seem in their deep secrecy and earthly spirituality more marvelous than the most radient visions of the mystics.

 From The Spring of Joy by Mary Webb

Pamela Temple rose garden

These images are taken in the treasured Northern California garden of Pamela Temple. I've had some of my life's happiest moments amongst its many roses. I often dream of being there.


Many thanks always Pamela !


Chicken Roasted on Potatoes and Garlic


I'm always looking for new ideas for chicken tenders. The cookbook Flavours, by Petrina Tinslay provided the following recipe.



 I’ve made this dish six times now and we've taken it to two potlucks. 



The colorful potatoes come from Trader Joes,.



The recipe called for oregano, but I used marjoram from the garden. 


Potatoes and garlic for roasting

The vegetables roast for 20 minutes before adding the chicken.


Chicken roasting on potatoes

Moisture from the veggies steam-bakes the chicken.


Chicken Roasted with Potatoes and Garlic

2T olive oil for veggies; 1 or 2 T more for chicken
6 (or enough to layer a baking sheet) new potatoes (one kind or a mix), cut in chunks
1 large yellow onion cut in chunks
1/4 cup of fresh marjoram, or oregano
12 fat cloves of garlic
1-2 lbs. chicken tenders brushed w olive oil, sprinkled with s&p


Preheat the oven to 400°. Toss the potatoes, onions, garlic, and herbs with olive oil and salt and pepper. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove vegetables from the oven, and place chicken tenders on top. Return to oven and bake another 12  to 15 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.

The house smells so good while this dish is baking. When the chicken is done I remove it and slice it, at an angle, into chunks. Sometimes I put the potatoes back in the oven, under the broiler, for five minutes for a little browning. When the potatoes are ready, toss with the chicken and sprinkle all with paprika.

I usually serve a dish like this on top of salad. 


Hummus (without tahini)


Warm pita triangles with a generous dollop of silky, creamy hummus is one of my favorite food combos. However, tahini (sesame paste) is one of the main ingredients in a traditional hummus recipe, and this cook hasn't cracked the code on how to combine the separated oil floating on top of the paste, with the actual paste. On the internet, one post says, "Just stir it together." Sorry, it just doesn't happen for me.

It's o.k. I have a fabulous tahini-less hummus recipe. Silky-creamy it's not, but rich with a nice texture it is.


Pan-roasted sesame seeds are the secret. Note the red arrow– don't even think of having the heat any higher– lower is good too. You want those seeds to brown gradually– no burning allowed.


The finished hummus after a whirl in the cuisinart.


Hummus, veggies,


and Japanese-style rice crackers make a yummy lunch.

Hummus (without tahini)

1 15 oz. can of garbanzo beans, drained– save 1/3 cup of the liquid
3 T sesame seeds, toasted (add a few extra for garnish)
1 medium cove of garlic crushed (larger if you're a garlic lover, but you know that)
1 T olive oil
1/2 t salt
1/2 juicy lemon, squeezed
Cayenne or white pepper, optional

Brown the sesame seeds in a pan over medium-low heat. Stir, to keep from burning with a wooden spoon. Place all ingredients in a cuisinart or blender and give them a good whirl.