Friday, March 8, 2013

Stompin’ Tom Connors, North Korea

One of Canada’s culturally iconic performers, Stopmpin’ Tom stompin-tom-connors-7056Connors, died yesterday at the age of 77. I remember almost as soon as I landed in Canada in 1975, Matt introduced me to his work on TV. Not actually our kind of music, but he was such a well known singer that Matt wanted me to be familiar with him. He was known as Stompin’ Tom because of his habit of stomping his foot as he sang. He was essentially Canadian and believed strongly in Canada and all his country stood for. There is an excellent piece about him on the CBC News page. He travelled Canada extensively and wrote his songs about Canada. Fascinating man. Tributes are pouring in from all over the country. The song I remember best, from 1975, began “You might think it’s goofy but the man in the moon is a Newfie” which really tickled my imagination.

By the way, a dory is a small boat.

Oh shit, the North Koreans have cancelled their non aggression pact and peace treaty with South Korea, they have threatened the States with a nuclear attack. The UN Council had voted to increase the northkorea-852sanctions against North Korea after its third nuclear test. I quote ‘Immediately before the vote, an unidentified spokesman for Pyongyang's Foreign Ministry said early Thursday the North will exercise its right for "a preemptive nuclear attack to destroy the strongholds of the aggressors" because Washington is pushing to start a nuclear war against the North.’ This whole thing is quite terrifying, I thought the world, including the North Koreans, had learned not to use such weapons, but it looks as though we could be in serious trouble. Surely they are not so stupid, they might get one missile off, but they could be bombed out of existence by the US even without the use of nuclear weapons – I personally am very worried, I am sure I am not alone. Washington is too close. I pray that its just a scare tactic.

This struck me as an unusual dessert from It does serve a lot of people, I would certainly have to size it down.

Pear and Almond Pudding

Source: Dessert - The Grand Finale
Serves 16

Pears baked in amaretto make a sweet, decadent combo.
INGREDIENTSPear and Almond Pie
For the Pears:
1 1/2 cups sugar
4 cups water
8 large pears, peeled
For the Pudding:
16 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup sugar
3 eggs
3 1/2 cups ground almonds
2 tablespoons amaretto liqueur, or
1 teaspoon almond extract

TO MAKE THE PEARS: Combine the sugar and water in a saucepan large enough to fit 4 pears. Stir over low heat to dissolve sugar, then bring to a boil. Add 4 of the pears and simmer for 5-7 minutes, until the pears are tender. Remove the pears from the syrup and set aside. Repeat with the remaining 4 pears.
Bring the syrup to a boil and boil until reduced by half. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter a 9 x 12 inch rectangular cake pan.

TO MAKE THE PUDDING: Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Fold in the ground almonds. Add the amaretto, or the almond extract combined with 2 tablespoons of the reserved syrup.

Arrange the pears upright in the prepared pan. Spoon the filling around the base of the pears so that it comes half way up the pears. Baste each pear with a little of the reserved syrup. Bake for 45 minutes, until the almond batter is puffed and golden. Before serving, brush each pear with a little reserved syrup.
Serve warm, cutting a pear in half for each person.

Have a great day


  1. I'd never heard of Tom Connors but just listened to the track and read the CBC Obit.

    There aren't enough characters like him left methinks!

    We've had a spate of recent deaths of stars we consider iconic - actors and musicians. Must be our age. Though Tom Connors was still a 'young man' at 77 I guess. Sad but at least he lives on in his music.

    1. Until I read the obit I didn't realise what a wonderful person he was. You are right, there aren't enough like him.

      Yes, its one of the great benefits of recording that we still have music or film of great stars.

  2. HI Jo! I am an A-Z blog buddy stopping by to say hi. You can see me at &

  3. North Korea is run by insane people - very scary.

    1. Last night when I wrote this I was absolutely terrified. Not sure why I was so scared. Today I have cooled off a tad, but as you say, its very scary.