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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Christmas Cooking/Baking (not recipes) (10/16/08)

TITLE: Saffron Buns
By Leah Nichols


The baking time for Christmas brunch
Had come in late December
And Mother's shopping list was drawn
With items to remember

Sugar - powdered, brown, and white
Vanilla, flour, and oil
Butter, spices, milk and eggs
Plastic wrap and foil

Upon the list my eyes did spy
An unfamiliar bit
The word a term I'd never heard
Which Mother's hand had writ

"What's saffron?" asked I, with a scowl
As Mother's known to bake
Unusual foods her fancy finds
Then force us to partake

"A rare spice found in crocus flow'rs,"
She answered with a smile
"It's pricey 'cause they have to use
A lot to make one pile!"

She added raisins, candied fruit,
And yeast onto the list
To make her saffron buns not even
One thing could be missed

Then off we flew to groc'ry store
Procuring all the stuff
We found the precious saffron
Hoping one jar was enough

Some anise, ginger, nutmeg, cloves
Slipped in the cart en route
To bake her Russian peppernuts
With frosted glaze to boot

Back in the kitchen, book in hand
She followed to a tee
Directions for the saffron buns
Found in the recipe

I tried the candied lemon peel
And orange peel as well
But neither sample did I like
Nor tolerate the smell

I wondered if her wondrous plan
Would please the family's palate
Despite her clear excitement
Other things might win the ballot

With quiche and fruit and peppernuts
And frosted cookies too
The strangely flavored saffron buns
Could bomb their first debut

Yet on she baked, with flour flying
'Round the table's rim
Determined as she strived to launch
Her newest baking whim

As scents began to fill the air
I longed for morning light
With family gath'ring round to share
In flavorful delight

Her oven opened to reveal
The spicy yellow bread
Peculiar odors filled the room
But doubt I left unsaid

For who knew if this novel treat
Could earn the house' acclaim
Would Mother's latest gamble
If not fortune, win her fame?

With ev'ning quickly drawing nigh
She finished up the menu
The brunch to feature her new fare
(A satisfact'ry venue)

No Santa did I wait for
On my bed that fateful night
But for those tasty foods I wanted
Just to take one bite

The morning dawned with saffron buns
Still laid out on the table
In moments now to sample them
We all would soon be able

As family trampled through the doors
With cur'ous eyes they looked
At Mother's tiny feast displayed
And what her hands had cooked

We gathered round the table
Celebrating Jesus' birth
And all the blessings He bestowed
To all who live on earth

Including saffron who would know
That flow'rs could make such flavor?
For everyone did try the buns
An aliment to savor

Yet when the other food had gone,
Remaining on the plate
Were several buns still lying there
In unaffected state

Would Mother sigh in disappointment?
Wondered I in fear
But she, undaunted, smiled and said
I'll make some more next year!

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This article has been read 959 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Sheri Gordon10/23/08
Very cute--now I want to try a saffron bun. :)
Beth LaBuff 10/26/08
How creatively you've written this entertaining poem. You have some excellent rhymes. I've made saffron bread before...and you've captured this spice perfectly. Now, I may have to make more (if I can afford the saffron :) ).
Celeste Ammirata10/27/08
What a cute poem. I love the mom's inexhaustible spirit.
Angela M. Baker-Bridge10/27/08
Great weaving of family history, traditions, personalities, recipe details, ingredient explanations, and set enjoyably to rhyme no less! Quite a remarkable feat.
Valarie Sullivan10/28/08
Oh, I dont usually do poesm, but this was great! I loved how you put the MC's feeings in there. First doubt, then anticipation. Loved it!
Verna Cole Mitchell 10/28/08
My favorite lines in your cute poem were:
The strangely favored saffron buns
Could bomb their first debut.
Karlene Jacobsen10/28/08
I liked this. I really need to work up the courage to try the meter. This was well done. I enjoyed seeing mom's undaunted attitude at the end.
Joshua Janoski10/29/08
Not only am I amazed at how you kept the meter so well throughout, but I am also amazed at the sheer length of this poem. usually poems are short, because people run out of clever stanzas, but yours is completely jam packed with them. Nice work! :)

I really need to try a saffron bun sometime...
Betty Castleberry10/29/08
I like this! Great meter, great rhyme. Love the story it tells, too. Two thumbs up.
LauraLee Shaw10/29/08
Your POV and attention to detail amazed me. What a delightful and entertaining read. ;)