Now that we have fairly comfortably cleared 200 days' worth of 2010 it's time to ask an important question. How are those New Year's resolutions going? For many of us it can be enough of a challenge just trying to remember what our New Year's resolutions were, and since we are now closer to January 1, 2011 then we are the last new year, it may hardly seem important.
Yet almost certainly most of us are likely to have at least a small sense of guilt and disappointment at failing to keep our promises. Of course, I'm assuming here that you are like the vast majority of us who managed to break our new year's resolutions before we even got to February. If you have succeeded in maintaining your resolutions then you have my utmost admiration and completing envy. But for those of you who could do with a fresh start, there is good news next week.
Make a note in your diary for Thursday the ninth of September. Why? Because this year, Thursday the ninth of September is the date on which the Jewish celebration of Rosh Hashanah falls. Rosh Hashanah is the Jewish New Year, which is a great opportunity for those of us who need a new start to enjoy the opportunity of making New Year's resolutions all over again. The Jewish celebration of Rosh Hashanah involves a number of traditions, one of which is the tradition of using honey and apples as ingredients in recipes.
This is to symbolise the sweetness that is felt in being a new start. If you feel like celebrating Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, or simply the fact that it's the second Thursday in September, then here's one of my favourite recipes which involves apples and honey. For this recipe you will need the following ingredients: • 1/4 cup granulated sugar • 1/4 cup water • 1/3 cup honey • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon • a few drops red food colouring, optional • 1/2 cup raisins • 6 apples In a large saucepan or stockpot combine everything except the apples.
Whilst you're bringing this mixture to the boil peel and core the six apples, and then add them to the pan. Lower the heat and cover the pan, leaving it to simmer for about 20 minutes, making sure that the apples are tender. Remove the apples and place them in a serving dish, and using a slotted spoon transfer some of the raisins to the centre of each apple.
Finally pour a little of the syrup over everything and serve. Delicious! In fact throughout the year there are many different celebrations of New Year and new starts, from the Jewish New Year to the Chinese New Year, from the Celtic New Year to the Hindu New Year, meaning that no matter how poorly you are able to keep your new year's resolutions, there's always the opportunity for a new start. In fact you may be comforted by the fact that the first of January hasn't always been the official start of the New Year in the UK, since during the Middle Ages it actually varied several times, including the first of March and even the first of September. The motto is, if at first you don't succeed, don't fret, there's always another chance in a few days' time. Happy Rosh Hashanah!