Occupational Hazards

I love Ayla in a way that transcends reason, but sometimes I resent her for taking over the only comfortable chair in the apartment, rendering it unsittable with her copious hair and doggy smell. When I wake early and want to drink tea with no heed to my posture, needing a transition point between fully asleep and fully awake, a wobbly wooden chair is a poor compromise. Especially since I sleep on the floor.

a beast enthroned
beast enthroned

Yesterday I went to the coffee shop and forgot to bring the goat cheese and onion biscuit I’d planned on taking with me as an emergency snack. By two thirty I was ravenous. The walk home brought me dumpster chocolate, tiny grapes. More sugar.

foraged bounty
foraged bounty

Every day, I tell myself it will be different. That somehow, in the midst of stress and huger and distracted inchoate longing, I’ll find the ability to deny myself the small nibbles that add up to a really unhealthy amount of sugar. Kourambiedes, little buttery crescents of shortbread dense with Marcona almonds. Oatmeal cookies with apricots or currants and a judicious sprinkle of nutmeg. The streusel I keep on hand, pre-baked, for topping  fruit crisps – “cookie pearls,” as my coworker dubbed them yesterday. The preternaturally irresistible chocolate chip cookies of which I’m rather proud. All of these end up in my mouth, en route to becoming part of my constitution.

I made macarons the other day – my first attempt. To my surprise and delight, they turned out. They’re a bit “rustic” – the food processor wouldn’t get the pistachios fine enough. But their nut-flecked chew is a pleasing counterpoint to the filling of rose buttercream that I colored pale pink with beet juice. Something about turning out a sheet of little cookie circles, piping on pastel-colored filling, making them into dainty sandwiches, satisfied my soul and made me feel like a real baker. Overall, a delightful enterprise: they’re going to enter my repertoire for sure.


kourambiedes, aka my downfall

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