Spring is Coming. . . . . .!

In spite of all the continue talk about global warming (even to the point I've heard rumors the new administration is thinking about (or is already) sending pollution particles into the atmosphere to ??? (You have me - I don't know why), we are enjoying (or enduring) another slow spring. While January and February were relatively mild, March was wet and windy, and April can't figure out what it wants to be when it grows up!

It amazes me to think we drove in to the resort in our van five years ago on the first week in April. Today, however, in mid-May we are still waiting for the road department to get the urge and the inclination to open the road. Although I know waiting is supposed to develop patience, sometimes I get tired of these character lessons :-)

So after several lovely, warm days, when spring really did seem to be in the air, we are back to blowing and drifting. It looks like winter out there folks!

However, we have reason to hope. The snow is settling. Bare spots are starting to appear. The snow is softening and feels wet and springy. And, in all reality, it is great to see our lakes full and our rivers running with abundance. Now if I can just figure out what to do to keep myself happy and entertained (without getting too fat with all this good cooking), and this, too, will pass.

Maybe I should take a lesson for the local Grizzly Bears. I hear the Grizzly's on the Rocky Mountain Front are taking it slow this year. Have you heard? According to the Great Falls Tribune, the bears are late coming out of their dens. Of course, the reporters also say the snow continues to fall, the dens are still well covered, and the wind is still blowing at these higher elevations (tell me about it). So, maybe I should take a lesson from the bears and settle in for a bit more of that 'long winter nap' :-)

Lady of the Lake


Bad Weather and Good Food

Snow continues to make the ‘news' around here. In fact, on Sunday the Centennial received another foot of new snow. Even today Ennis has four inches on the ground. Will it end? Sure. How soon? Sometimes it does not seem like it will be soon enough.

Inclement weather often keeping us inside more than we would like. As the season approaches, I start thinking about the food we will be serving. Thus this is a great time of year to do a few experiments.

Believe it or not, you are never our guinea pigs. We really do taste test the dishes we serve! The cold outside makes homemade soup and freshly baked bread seem even more appealing.

Many winter visitors enjoy our fresh baked bread with a bowl of soup One new soup recipe has received some rave reviews. One bread recipe smells as good as it tastes. I have been asked for both recipes.

Except for a few ‘house' recipes I have sworn to never reveal, I am usually happy to share recipes with guests who ask for them. Today I thought I would share a favorite bread recipe with all my blog readers.

Three Herb Loaf
Makes 1 loaf. VERY NICE, fragrant bread with a nice texture.

1 package active dry yeast

2 teaspoons granulated sugar

¼ cup warm water (105-115 degrees)

1¼ cups warm milk (105 - 155 degrees)

1 Tablespoon vegetable oil

½ cup chopped fresh herbs (sage, rosemary, thyme)

1 large egg, lightly beaten

2 teaspoons salt

4 cups bread flour


1 large egg, lightly beaten

In a large bowl, dissolve yeast and sugar in warm water. Let stand until foamy, 5 to 10 minutes. Stir in warm milk, herbs, oil, egg, and salt.

Using a heavy-duty electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and set on low speed, beat flour, ½ cup at a time, into yeast mixture until a stiff dough forms, 5 to 10 minutes.

Turn dough out onto a floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, 5 to 10 minutes, adding more flour to prevent sticking. Place dough in a large greased bowl, turning to coat. Cover loosely with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place until doubled, 1¼ hours.

Punch down dough. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead for 1 to 2 minutes. Shape dough into an oval loaf and place on a greased baking sheet. Cover dough loosely with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place until almost doubled, about 45 minutes.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Brush loaf with glaze. Slash top of loaf in several places. Bake until loaf is golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped, 20 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.


Lady of the Lake


Spring in the Air - Sometimes!

This is the time of year we start longing for spring. Of course spring in the high mountains means sunshine, snow, cold nights, and warm days.

While the warming days tempt us to believe spring is on the way, the cold nights remind us winter is still in control. In a good snow year this is a good time to play. People are few. The snow is good. However, there is a reason the people are few. We are all looking for signs of spring - not reminders of winter.

Fortunately this is also the time of year we get a break. Thus we can spend a week or so in a warmer climate, enjoying some green grass, trees which are beginning to bud, and even an occasional splash of color. Reminders of what will soon arrive in our corner of the world.

This is also the time of year we focus on improving and upgrading and repairing. The time of year we focus on getting things ready for our summer guests. The time of year we can focus more on family time. The time of year which allows us to prepare and regroup for the coming busy summer season.

Thus while we are longing for warmer nights and the first hints of green poking through the melting snow, we are also enjoy a breather between seasons, and we are preparing for and looking forward to your visit.

See you soon!

Lady of the Lake