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The Elisabeth C. Miller Botanical Garden in Seattle

The Sunny Bank I was very excited to get the opportunity to visit this garden because I've heard so much about it. It did not disappoint. The garden was created by Elisabeth Carey Miller and her husband Pendleton who purchased the house in 1948. Mrs. Miller was a self-taught gardener who used her artistic skills (she majored in Art History) to create the stunning garden which features a dense canopy of native conifers. She became a plant collector and tracked down unusual specimens and was known as a well-respected plantswoman in the horticultural community. The front entrance Visiting this garden is not exactly easy. It is situated in a restricted community and there is a limit to the number of visitors per year. You must make an appointment on the website at designated times or you can find a tour group like I did. The address isn't listed either although even if you had it, you would have to get past the security guard at the gate to the neighborhood. I think if I lived in

Katharine Hepburn's Brownies

As a big fan of both Katharine Hepburn and brownies, I've always wanted to try this recipe. I finally got around to making them this past weekend and they were well worth the wait. In fact, this will now be my "go to" recipe for brownies. They have a crackly crust but are wonderfully moist and chewy on the inside and deliciously chocolaty. And best of all, very easy to make!

2 oz. unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
1/2 (1 stick) cup unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 cup white sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)

1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
2. Butter and flour an 8-inch baking pan.
3. Melt unsweetened chocolate and butter over very low heat in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of about 1 1/2 inches of simmering water, whisking until smooth.
4. Remove from heat and stir in sugar, eggs and vanilla.
5. Whisk in the flour and salt, until well blended.
6. Stir in the nuts.
7. Spread the batter in the baking pan. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes. Remove the pan to a rack to cool completely. Cut into 9 brownies.

Text and photos by Phillip Oliver, Dirt Therapy


  1. Does the recipe end, "Cut into 9 brownies. Oh, who are you kidding? Just eat the whole pan." Those look really good.

  2. Can't wait to try this! Does it fit into my "healthy eating" plan?

  3. These are the standard brownies around here and have been for years. Best when eaten watching "The Philadelphia Story." Milkshakes should be reserved for "Guess Who's Coming To Dinner."

  4. I am trying to lose weight, and you are not helping! But, of course, my diet does allow one serving of chocolate per day, otherwise I can't possibly stick to it. These look fabulous!

  5. I love brownies. I'll have to try this recipe. Yummy.

  6. OK I have to make these. My favorite brownie recipe right now is Molly Wizenberg's. I'll see what I think after I make these.

  7. I would feel so fancy and important eating these! looks good!

  8. Yummo! I just watched Alton Brown make brownies last night. Reminded me how much I like them. Now you're pushing them. Must get some ...


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