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Mrs. Sundberg's Recipe Collection - 12 tried-and-true--one for each month of the year--featuring an introduction and tips from Mrs. Sundberg herself

Anything Worthwhile Deserves Patience

March 19, 2013

Listened to the show Saturday and it was not bad. After the truly harrowing drive to pick up my daughter on Friday, I will admit once and only once that I must be aging because my body was a mess on Saturday. Muscle tension will do that to you. To tense up every muscle in one's body for a series of hours without a break results, at my age, in a kind of post-muscle-tension-fatigue that will bring on a series of naps and cravings for salt and water and odd fruit I've never eaten. Starfruit, plaintains, durian, poi. Never had 'em. Craved 'em all on Saturday. Go figure.

On Sunday I craved corned beef, and I ate it. A good half pound, if I am right. And a mess of sauerkraut, and when I was finished felt more like I'd visited a German buffet than eaten a plate of Irish food. The day kind of slid into night, and the snow returned, and I got to thinking how I love the inbetween times, but this one is dragging out a bit. You know, the shift from winter to spring. Hard to choose between a heavy jacket and a parka, and you never know what shoes are going to work right. Patience is called for, and luckily we mark our days so we have something on which to hang our hopes, and Wednesday, this week, the 20th of March, is the First Day of Spring. Bring on the cravings.

They're different from winter's, these cravings of spring. Lemons and berries, fluffy things, light. Bare feet, lawn chairs, open windows and tea. Less cheese, more yogurt. Bananas, apples, rhubarb, peas; orchids, tulips and lilies. Jellybeans, and egg dishes, and the feeling you having singing the good old hymns at the sunrise service on Easter morn. Craving the scent of grass, scent of earth, scent of anything on the wind but snow, whose scent is fresh enough but tired now, and give me a breeze and a book and the sound of water dripping. Bring on the melt. The river opening, the great yawn of the lake as the ice draws away and fish ripple the surface waves. Bring on the tinkling of chimes, the lawn ornaments, the mowers and the sun. I can be patient. Anything worthwhile deserves patience. For raspberries, I can wait. And I will.

Couldn't decide, so here are two recipes worth your time. The first, light enough to follow a ham dinner, with your choice of flavors; and the second, something I've always wanted to try, rice pie, and did, and you'll enjoy serving it up with, perhaps, some fresh pineapple, or what berries you might find.

Layered Pudding Dessert

Crust: 1½ cups flour, ½ cup crushed nuts (or oatmeal), 1½ sticks softened butter. Cut with fork until evenly mixed/crumbly. Press into 9 X 13 cake pan. Bake 10 minutes at 350.

Layer 1: mix 8 oz. plus 3 oz. cream cheese with 1 c. white sugar. Add 1 cup Cool Whip. Mix. Spread over cooled crust.

Layer 2: mix 2 small packages instant lemon pudding (pistachio works great for a St. Patrick's Day dessert, or chocolate is great, too). Use about ½ the milk required on package (for greater thickness). Spread over cream cheese layer.

Spread Cool Whip over pudding, as much as you'd like. You'll probably use a 16 oz container for the entire dessert. Sprinkle with nuts if you like.

Easter Rice Pie

8 eggs
1½ cups rice, cooked and cooled
3 lbs ricotta cheese
1¾ cups sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 (9-inch) unbaked pie shells
Cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350. Beat eggs in a large bowl, and add the rice, ricotta, sugar, and vanilla and stir it up well. Pour into pie shells and sprinkle with cinnamon (I like to add a dash of nutmeg). Bake for an hour.

Enjoy!

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