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Happy New Ear!

December 31, 2019

It’s New Year’s Eve. I am snug on my couch in my flannel pajamas with my fuzzy, cream bathrobe on, keeping an eye on Topper, cozy in the corner. I am having a cocktail of Maker’s Mark whiskey and Canada Dry Ginger Ale with TWO cherries and am incredibly content.

I’ve never been one to traipse around in high heels at New Year’s Eve parties. I always hated being at parties when it turned midnight and every guy you weren’t interested in wanted to kiss you. No thanks. Give me my bathrobe, a lit tree in the corner and a cocktail and I’m happy.

My parents were much the same, although my mom had some interesting ideas about what brought luck for the New Year. Most everyone agrees that pork is good luck because pigs root around with their snouts in a forward motion. (Italians say Sempre Avanti – always forward.)

My mom took the whole pig scenario a step further and actually carried the pork roast she was going to cook for New Year’s Day dinner to the front porch, just before midnight. I’m guessing this was an attempt to increase the pork’s luck factor.

I think she believed it was doubly lucky if there was a full moon on New Year’s Eve. If so, she would take her purse outside, open it up, hold it up to the moon and say, “Fill it up, fill it up, fill it up!” I watched her do it, as my father stood at the front door staring at her incredulously. Then he’d walk back inside shaking his head. She’d just say, “Nevermind him. Go ahead Frenzy, getta your purse and bring it out.” Apparently, she thought the moon had strong, mysterious banking powers we both could cash in on .

Then when midnight struck, she yelled, “Happy New Ear!”

Happy New Ear!

I’m not sure her antics ever brought in any extra money in the coming year, but the entertainment value was well worth a trip to our house on New Year’s Eve. When she finally did come inside, we’d have a shot of wine, champagne, Vermouth or Anisette to celebrate.

I know I talk about her a lot, but every time I think I’ve told all the stories, I remember another snippet, and feel compelled to share it. Much like I feel compelled to share my favorite new recipes.

Since I’ve been crazy busy I haven’t cooked as much as I wanted to, but I did create a cranberry sauce that was really good. It had fresh pineapple and orange rind and such a wonderful fresh taste, it makes it a perfect accompaniment to turkey or pork chops or chicken. Usually stores still have cranberries for another week or two after Christmas, so try this recipe. Frozen cranberries work too. Try it, you’ll love it!

I wish you the very best in 2020. I even like the sound of 2020. Let’s hope it brings us all health, happiness, peace and prosperity in abundance, as Mom would say.

Cranberry Sauce with Pineapple and Orange Rind.

Cranberry Sauce with Pineapple and Orange zest

Yields1 Serving

 12 oz fresh or frozen cranberries
 ¼ cup water
 1 cup sugar
 ½ cup fresh pineapple chopped in to small chunks
 ¼ of the rind of one medium orange

1

Rinse the berries and place them in a small pot on the stove under medium heat. Add the water and the sugar and stir as the berries pop. Once the berries are cooked, about 10 minutes, add the pineapple chunks and the orange rind. Cover and let cool. Chill and serve.

Ingredients

 12 oz fresh or frozen cranberries
 ¼ cup water
 1 cup sugar
 ½ cup fresh pineapple chopped in to small chunks
 ¼ of the rind of one medium orange

Directions

1

Rinse the berries and place them in a small pot on the stove under medium heat. Add the water and the sugar and stir as the berries pop. Once the berries are cooked, about 10 minutes, add the pineapple chunks and the orange rind. Cover and let cool. Chill and serve.

Cranberry Sauce with Pineapple and Orange Rind

  • Reply
    daedae51
    January 10, 2020 at 7:04 pm

    Happy New Year Fran! Always love stories about your mom & dad, they were gems! I too make my cranberry sauce with orange zest, now will try the fresh pineapple. I eat it year round on turkey, pork and sometimes chicken even on sandwiches. As you can see by date I’m trying to catch up with new year.

  • Reply
    Chas Madonio
    January 2, 2020 at 8:59 am

    I’ll have to try that with my pork roast next year. Have a great year!

    • Reply
      Fran Tunno
      January 2, 2020 at 10:01 am

      You’ll love it Chas, it’s really good. Thanks for always reading and taking the time to post. You are the best. I will try to be better about posting this year. Happy New Ear to you and Nancy and the family!

  • Reply
    Matilda S. Novak
    January 1, 2020 at 9:49 pm

    Sweet Fran, what a blessing to read your words again. You Always make me smile….. We were both so fortunate in our Mamas. i’m going to add some fresh pineapple to my cranberry sauce next year! (i already do orange, and that combination sounds Fabulous)

    • Reply
      Fran Tunno
      January 2, 2020 at 10:00 am

      Hi Matilda, so good to hear from you! You won’t regret the addition of pineapple, it’s really good. Wish I would have posted this sooner but last year really got away from me! Happy New Ear!

  • Reply
    JoAnn Jones
    January 1, 2020 at 7:02 pm

    Happy New Year, Fran, I love reading the stories about your mom & dad and have so many wonderful memories of the times spent in Pa especially at Christmas . 😘🤗

    • Reply
      Fran Tunno
      January 1, 2020 at 8:54 pm

      Thank you so much JoAnn, you are so sweet to always read and take the time to comment. I appreciate it more than you know! Happy New Ear to you and your family!

  • Reply
    Nicol Z
    January 1, 2020 at 9:10 am

    Happy New Ear, Fran!!! Your cookies were the first taste of this new era for me so I know mine will be filled with sweetness and flavor. Salute, my lovely friend. I know it will be good for you, too!

    • Reply
      Fran Tunno
      January 1, 2020 at 8:53 pm

      Thanks Nicol, I’m glad your year is off to a good, sweet start. With you at the helm, I would expect nothing less! Happy New Ear!

  • Reply
    Monica Muehsam
    January 1, 2020 at 5:02 am

    I hope you continue to remember stories about your mom, Fran, they are priceless! Happy New Ear to you too- here’s to a great year ahead!

    • Reply
      Fran Tunno
      January 1, 2020 at 7:41 am

      Aww, thank you Monica. I hope your book is doing well. I need it to get out of my whiskey and ginger ale rut! Happy New Year to you, Dave and the kids!

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