Monday, March 21, 2016

The Full Worm Moon, Easter, and a Planters' Punch Recipe for the Family

Well, it’s been a bit of an busy time.
A week ago we had Daylight Savings Time.
Sleepy or not, we soldiered on to bake traditional foods to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, then St. Joseph’s Feast Day.
Yesterday was both the First Day of Spring and Palm Sunday.

That’s right, Easter is this Sunday.
I know, you haven’t finished setting all the clocks in the house and car ahead an hour.
Too bad.

Easter has to be held on the first Sunday following the first Full Moon of Spring, which is happening this Wednesday.
March 22 is the earliest Easter can occur, and April 25 is the latest.
No real reason, it just was decided to do Easter this way in the Fourth Century.
If you’d like to plan ahead, here are the dates for the next four Easters:
2017    April 16
2018    April 1
2019    April 21
2020    April 12
So, yes, it’s a bit early this year.
Too bad.

If you’re in the Eastern Orthodox Churches, thanks to the Julian calendar, you can ignore all of the above.
You usually have a bit more time.
Don’t gloat.

If you’re not so lucky, you might be hosting the family Easter dinner this Sunday.
I know, it just gets better and better.

I’ve posted a page with links for Easter Recipes.
Also a page that has some of Carmela Soprano’s best family dinner menu items: appetizers, vegetable and pasta courses, main meat courses, and desserts.
Hopefully they’ll help you plan your menu.
You’re welcome.

But, since the family is coming, it might be a good idea to have something on hand to, well, smooth over the rough edges.
Like when everyone's favourite uncle comments on the fact that a certain nephew is still living with his parents.
Back in his day, a man that age was a man…
Yeah, family… gotta love it.

Planters' Punch is a simple cocktail made of dark rum, lemon juice, Grenadine syrup and a dash of Angostura bitters.
So it’s quick and easy to make more of  this punch to keep those glasses filled.
This recipe has been around a while.
The September 1878 issue of the London magazine Fun mentioned it.
The recipe is a classic that everyone will most likely enjoy.

In the 1942 spy thriller Across the Pacific Humphrey Bogart and Mary Astor both order a Planter's Punch at a bar in Panama.
The movie's plot was set on the eve of World War II.
If the writer thought a glass or two of Planters' Punch could help Humphrey Bogart get through an oncoming world war, well, who am I to disagree?


Some people also add orange juice and pineapple juice.
The glasses can be garnished with a cocktail cherry and a pineapple slice.

                        Planters' Punch

In a large pitcher pour
a fifth of dark rum
1 Cup lemon juice
3/4 Cup Grenadine syrup
1 teaspoon Angostura bitters
Stir well.
Pour into tall glasses filled with ice.
Garnish with 
a cocktail cherry and an orange slice

About the sky this week…
According to the Farmers Almanac:

On March 20 we welcomed spring with the Vernal equinox. This marks the change of seasons where the length of daylight hours begin to win out over the length of nighttime hours.

On March 21 the waxing gibbous Moon is very close to the planet Jupiter, which will be just northwest of the Moon.

On March 23 we’ll have the first Full Moon of Spring. 
See the video on how March's Full Worm Moon got its name.

On March 25, and for the next two weeks, look to the western sky for the Zodiacal light or “false dawn,” in the early evening.

On March 30 the Moon reaches its southernmost point, sometimes referred to as lunar standstills.


  1. Would you believe I missed the full moon last night, Margaret? I was soooo tired after our weekend get-away that I barely got today's post up last night and then I hit the hay, lol...

    I'm kinda glad we won't be having company for Easter this year. It's going to be a quiet one and that's just fine with us:) I may even just roast a chicken, lol..

    As for you Planters Punch, no can do, lol...I have such an aversion to Grenadine. It just doesn't agree with me and Planters Punch is one of those cocktails that just wouldn't be the same without it.

    Thanks so much for sharing Margaret...Happy, Happy Easter to You and Yours...

    1. Don't feel bad, Louise. You and Marion had lots of fun, and that's always good! Catch the moon next month :)

      Ah, well, since you're having a nice quiet Easter, you won't be needing the punch to smooth things over. A nice bottle of wine would add a festive touch to the roasted chicken, which is a reasonable-sized version of a turkey.

      Happy Easter, to you and Marion and your family and friends...


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