|A streetcorner in Joplin, before and after the tornado. (Photo cred: Flickr/Aaron Fuhrman)|
Some friends of ours live in Joplin, MO. Sunday night's tornado missed their house by a few blocks, and they are safe, but I can't stop thinking about them. And I can't stop praying for the people who were not so lucky; people who lost their homes, or even their lives. I've been watching footage of the wreckage the tornado left, feeling helpless... and watching in disbelief as the reports of more tornadoes keep pouring in.
If you'd like to help the relief effort in Joplin, there are many different ways you can contribute. CNN has compiled a list of the different organizations that are helping to clean up, care for those who were injured, reunite people with their families, and provide food, water, and shelter to those whose homes were destroyed. Text "REDCROSS" to 90999 to make a $10 donation, or visit the American Red Cross website to donate, give blood or volunteer.
I will donate $1 to the Red Cross for every person who comments on this post with a prayer or a word of encouragement to those affected by this disaster.
And here's a recipe, too. To make your day a little sweeter.
adapted from Molly's take on a recipe from Canal House Cooking, Volume 3
I just became aware of the existence of vanilla bean paste earlier this week, and I am still a little amazed by it. For less than the price of two vanilla beans, you can get four ounces of a mixture of sugar, vanilla extract, and vanilla beans that, to my taste, does precisely the same thing that vanilla beans do. And it lasts forever in the fridge! For a girl on a budget, this option cannot be beat.
2 lb. rhubarb, trimmed and cut into 3-inch lengths
½ cup sugar
½ cup crisp white wine
1 vanilla bean, split (or 1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste)
Set a rack in the lower third of the oven, and preheat the oven to 350°F.
Put the rhubarb in a Dutch oven or other deep oven-safe pot. Add the sugar, wine, and vanilla bean (paste), and stir to mix. Bake (uncovered) for about 30 minutes, or until very tender, giving the pot a gentle stir about midway through to ensure that the rhubarb cooks evenly.
Yield: About 2 cups.