November 20, 2009: A Special Day and A Very Special Gift - Pay it Forward

Today is a special day for me. I'm publishing my 300th post! If I'd known my blog was going to live this long, I'd have taken better care of it. *grin*

Yesterday I received a very special gift from Thomas at A Growing Tradition. Since I've never been to New England, Thomas sent a bit of New England to me!

On the brown bag, which is printed with replicas of old advertisements, are chocolate covered Cape Cod Cranberries, A little jug of pure Vermont maple syrup, a bag of Hutchinson's Maple Caramel Corn from New Hampshire, A box of Boston Tea Party English Breakfast Tea, and a potholder imprinted with a recipe for real Boston Baked Beans.

Oh, but that's not all! There was one thing in the package that was so very special, it deserved very special treatment, so I got out the recipe for one of my favorite breads and went to work. Well, it's not really work when I make bread in the food processor!

Dakota Bread
Yield: 1 loaf

1 package active dry yeast
1/2 cup warm water (105 to 110 degrees)
2 Tablespoons canola oil
1 egg
1/2 cup cottage cheese
1/4 cup honey....this was very special honey from Stefaneener
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups bread flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup rolled oats

Sprinkle yeast in warm water; stir to dissolve.

Combine remaining ingredients in work bowl of food processor. Add yeast. Process until dough forms a ball, check for moisture, adding a bit more flour or water if needed. Process for about 15 seconds, then let rest for 5 minutes. Process for 60 seconds or until dough feels smooth and elastic (mine was slightly soft and almost sticky, perfect when greased by the bowl).

Place dough in a greased bowl, turn to grease all surfaces; cover loosely with oiled plastic wrap. Let rise in warm place until doubled in size, about 30 minutes. Punch down dough. Shape into one loaf. Place into a greased loaf pan. Cover loosely with oiled plastic wrap and let rise until doubled in size (about 1 hour).

Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes.

Hot from the oven...

Mr. H gets both of the heels while they are still warm. I get a nice, thick slice to toast. Have you guessed where I'm going with this?

Hmmmm, what is that in the jar? must be Thomas' Meyer Lemon Marmalade!

Oh, he's good. Really good. It's perfectly jelled, not too thick, not too thin.

The flavor is heavenly. Sweet, a slight lemon tang, just the tiniest hint of the bitter that makes it marmalade. It's hard to believe this is the first time Thomas has made jam or jelly!

The last bite was as good as the first.

I ended the evening with a cup of hot Boston Tea Party tea, and another reading of Thomas' heart warming blog entry for Wednesday, November 18, 2009, "On Family - Honest Scrap Award". If you haven't yet read it, please do, but be ready to cry. It's a good kind of cry, though.

When I accepted Thomas' offer of a gift, I promised to pay it forward. If you would like to receive a goody bag from Granny, leave a comment on this post to let me know. On Saturday I'll randomly chose by putting your names in a hat and drawing out three. I was going to pick the first three emails sent to me, but I felt there was too much advantage for the eastern time zoners and/or insomniacs ;-)


  1. I guess this is the perfect time to post my first comment:) I've been following your blog for awhile now, and am always inspired by your goings-on.

    Thanks for the sweet offer of this contest....I guess now I have to think of ways to 'pay it forward' if I win!

  2. Oh wow now I'm jealous. You got some of his lemon marmalade. BTW I love that maple caramel corn. Last time we were in New Hampshire my hubby and I pigged out on it and brought two bags home.

    And congrats on your 300th post.

  3. Alright, confession time. I just shrieked when I scrolled to see the marmalade. How very cool.

    I just sent Stefaneener some of the peach and red peper spread in exchange for her honey. I love the idea of paying it forward.

    I'm in!

  4. Oh, yay! I am glad everything arrived in one piece and that you liked the marmalade, Gran. When the man at the post office asked me whether I had any perishables, liquids or glass in the box, I instinctively answered "no" out of fear that they would confiscate everything and interrogate me. LOL! I guess I've gone through too many airport screenings lately.

    That bread looks delicious! I will have to try the recipe.

  5. Um, how rude of me! CONGRATULATIONS on your 300th blog! When you think about it, it's like writing a book!

  6. Congrats on your 300th!! May there be at least that many more!
    Have a great weekend!

  7. Congratulation on your 300 post Granny.
    I saw the marmalade and my mouth started watering. I love anything lemon.mmmmmmm

  8. hey granny congrats and love the bread pics....can i have mine with pnut butter and honey, pleeeeease?
    look forward to the next 300...i'm just at 12!

  9. congrats on your 300th post...look forward to the next 300th..

  10. Congrats Granny!!!

    And I'd love to enter your Pay It Forward contest!

    Your bread looks amazing! As does Thomas' marmalade! Yummo!

  11. The bread looks define!! Congrats on your blogging!! Wonderful

  12. Well, my BFF, If you only do these things occasionally, you are doing better than I.

    My problem is I don't remember I did silly things a day after I did them!

    I juiced my pomagranates, now I just need to make some jelly.


  13. Congratulation on your 300 post Granny! Hope to see many more.

    I read Thomas' post and it just about made me cry. That man is amazing in so many ways.


  14. I am so amazed at the online friendships that can form through blogging. Both you and Thomas are such wonderful people! What an incredible package and an wonderful post and pictures showing the package contents. Congrats on your 300th post!!

    I am looking forward to following the “pay it forward” posts as the magic is spread onward.

  15. Thanks to everyone who commented on my 300th post! I hope I'm around for another 300 ;-)

    All but one of you got entered in the pay it forward fun. Darn it, GrafixMuse, I shouldn't have had my morning coffee so early :-( Maybe we can play it again some day. My "rules" weren't very specific, were they? I'm too much of an "act now, think about it later" type of person.

  16. Now Granny, don't you worry. I posted late because I wasn't entering the "pay it forward" fun. I just wanted to share my enjoyment in your post.

  17. Hey, 300! That's great! And the marmalade looks scrumptious.

  18. Thank you, Rachel, I enjoy your blog too!

    Stefaneener, it tasted scrumptious! So did the bread with the stefaneener honey!

  19. Congrats on hitting 300, that is quite the accomplishment! I am glad you are enjoying your taste of New England, that Thomas has outdone himself once again. :)