Advent’s Call for Peace

Today posed a challenge. December 5th is National Repeal Prohibition Day. Prohibition went into effect with the passage of the 18th Amendment in 1920 and repealed on December 5, 1933 with the 21st Amendment. Celebrating the end of Prohibition is easy.

The challenge was to mark the end of Prohibition without overshadowing a much more meaningful day – the Second Sunday of Advent. In my book, days of faith take prescience over anything secular in history. Especially Advent – to prepare the way for the Christmas Season, the birth of Christ and His glorious Second Coming. As a Christian, I believe that He will come again. When that may be only the Father knows. Advent is a reminder through prayer, thought and action to be ready in mind, body and soul.

The focus of the Second Sunday of Advent is one of peace. If we are filled with rage or anger or hatred we cannot hope to bring peace into this world. Peace begins within us. Today as we light the candles of our Advent Wreath, we are reminded to let go of anything that might stand in the way of achieving peace within. Forgive one another. Forgiveness isn’t about the other person. It’s about letting go of that which robs us of peace. This is easier said than done. Believe me, I know. As we light the second candle and stand in the growing glow of light, I pray for peace within myself.

Opening Prayer: Lord God, Lamb of God
Let Yours blessings come upon us
As we light the candles of this Advent wreath.
May the wreath and its light be a symbol
Of Christ’s promise of eternal salvation.

Response: Let us go rejoicing to the house of the Lord.

As the first (purple) candle is lit
Prayer: Blessed are you, Lord, God of all creation.
In the darkness and in the light, Holy is Your Name.
We place our hope in you, Oh Lord,
As we prepare our hearts to celebrate the coming of the Lord

Response: Now and forever. Amen.

As the second (purple) candle is lit
Prayer: Blessed are you, Lord; God of all creation.
Let your light shine on those who dwell in darkness.
Let the earth receive her King
And fill our hearts with Your everlasting peace

Response: Now and forever. Amen.

For this supper, I’ve selected recipes that are laced with the celebration of the end of Prohibition. Bourbon is in the glazed salmon, Brandy as part of the dessert. It is both special for Advent Sunday and deliciously whimsical. Enjoy!

A Called to Peace Advent Salmon Supper
Bourbon Maple Salmon Fillet
Lemon Zest Seared Asparagus
Caramelized Onion Garlic Mashed Potatoes
Brandy Eggnog Bread Pudding

Bourbon Maple Salmon Fillet
2 Green Onion, thinly sliced
Fresh Parsley, chopped
4 (6 oz) Salmon Fillets
3 tablespoons Butter, melted
Fresh Black Pepper to taste
Fine Sea Salt, divided
3/4 cup Bourbon
1/4 cup Maple Syrup
1/2 teaspoon Chili Powder
Cayenne Pepper to taste

Heat oven to 425 degrees. Thinly slice green onions and chop parsley, set aside.

Gently rinse salmon under cold water; pat dry an set aside.

Melt butter, lightly brush bottom of a casserole dish with butter. Place the salmon fillets in the dish and brush with remaining melted butter. Season filets with salt and pepper. Set salmon aside.

In a small saucepan over medium heat, mix together the bourbon, maple syrup, chili powder, salt and cayenne pepper. Bring mixture to a boil, stirring with a rubber spatula. Once mixture begins to boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for 12 minutes, until thickened into a glaze. Stir, scraping the bottom of the saucepan every few minutes during the reduction process to keep from burning the sugars in the bourbon and syrup. Do not simmer too long or the glaze with become candied glass once it cools.

While the glaze reduces, bake the salmon in the heated oven. Bake for about 7 minutes or until opaque and flakey.

Transfer salmon fillets to individual plates. Spoon glaze over the fillets, garnish with green onions and parsley. Serve and enjoy.

Lemon Zest Seared Asparagus
1 lb Asparagus
1/2 large Lemon
2 tablespoons Butter
1 tablespoon Olive Oil
Kosher Salt
Fresh Black Pepper

Trim asparagus tips. Set aside until ready to cook.

Cut lemon in half, Reserve half for another use. Zest remaining half lemon, set zest aside.

In a skillet over medium heat, melt butter with olive oil. Add asparagus tips, spreading out evenly in the skillet. Sprinkle with lemon zest. Squeeze the juice of half a lemon over the asparagus. Let asparagus cook undisturbed until it begins to char and is tender crisp, about 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Keep warm until ready to serve.

Caramelized Onion Garlic Mashed Potatoes
2 large White Onions
3 tablespoons Olive Oil, divided
Kosher Salt as needed
2 1/2 lbs Yukon Gold Potatoes,
4 Garlic Cloves
White Pepper to taste

Peel and finely chop the onions; set aside.

In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium-low heat. Add onions, season with salt. Cook, stirring frequently, until onions are caramelized, 35 to 40 minutes. Keep warm.

Peel potatoes, cut into quarters and place in a saucepan with enough water to cover potatoes by 1 inch. Peel garlic, grate over the potatoes. Stir to blend. Bring pot to a boil, the add Kosher Salt to taste. Cover; reduce heat and summer until potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes or so.

Place a colander in a large metal mixing bowl. Drain potatoes into the colander. Lift from the bowl, let drain completely. Reserve 1 cup of the cooking liquid, discard the rest.

Return potatoes speckled with garlic to pan. Add remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil; season with salt and white pepper. Mash until smooth, adding reserved liquid as needed. Stir in onions, taste and adjust seasonings as needed. Serve immediately.

Brandy Eggnog Bread Pudding
1 loaf Brioche
1/4 cup Butter, melted
1 tablespoon Sugar
1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon, divided
3 large Eggs
1-1/2 cups Eggnog
2 tablespoons Brandy
1 tablespoon Powdered Sugar
1/4 cup Caramel Sauce

Heat oven to 325-degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper, set aside.

Cut Brioche to measure 8 cups cubed, place in a large mixing bowl. Melt butter, drizzle over bread cubes. In a small bowl, mix sugar with 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon. Sprinkle sugar mixture over buttered bread. Toss to coat.

Spread bread cubes out on the prepared baking sheet. Place in the oven and let toast until golden brown. Let bread cool to room temperature.

In a mixing bowl, whisk eggs, eggnog and brandy. Add toasted bread cubes, toss to coat. Let bread sit in custard for about 20 minutes to absorb all the eggnog goodness. Toss one last time.

Pour bread pudding into a 6-inch by 9-inch casserole dish. Gently press the bread into the dish to create an even surface and so the custard is approximately at the same level as the top of the bread. Bake uncovered for 35 minutes, or until a thermometer inserted into the middle reads 165-degrees.

While the bread pudding bakes, combine the powdered sugar and remaining 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon.

Remove bread pudding from the oven, sprinkle sugar mixture over the hot bread pudding. Drizzle with caramel sauce and serve warm.

Author: Rosemarie's Kitchen

I'm a wife, mother, grandmother and avid home cook.I believe in eating healthy whenever possible, while still managing to indulge in life's pleasures.

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