Each time I see her, I want to know her story. Why she pushes her baby doll. Why she takes the time to dress it for the day.
She doesn't seem sane to me or probably to the other people that she meets on her afternoon walks.
I'm sure many people question her mental health.
I'm sure many people wonder who takes care of her.
Just last night, I dreamed that all three of my sisters were in the kitchen with me. We felt complete. Susanne joked with Pam, and Noelle and I laughed.
But then I woke up, and I remembered that this wouldn't happen anytime soon...the four of us together, in one room.
It made me want to buy a doll. It made me want to wander through the streets. It made me want to clutch something inanimate to remind me and the world of my loss.
So although we gawk at people like the stroller woman (and we all do, it doesn't take much looking to find them), we aren't really that different. We all have moments of intense loss and grief...and we find ways to cope with them.
For me, being in the kitchen and sharing my home is one of the ways I deal with loss. I guess anyone who bakes as much as me might be considered crazy too.
But these cookies? These were made by a dear friend. A woman in my MFA program who left her career as a pastry chef and instructor to pursue her dreams of writing. These mocha creme cookies are beautiful and delicious... just the way dessert should be...a feast for the eyes and for the stomach.
*From the kitchen of Mary
1 pound butter, softened
4 ounces of unsweetened chocolate
8 ounces of sugar
8 ounces of powdered sugar
.25 ounces of salt
2 large eggs
.25 ounces of Vanilla
1 pound, 8 ounces of pastry flour
2 ounces of Black or dark cocoa
1. Preheat oven to 375. Place Silplat mats or parchment paper on baking sheets
2.Melt unsweetened chocolate over a double boiler; set aside.
Sift the powdered and granulated sugar together to remove lumps; set aside.
Sift together the flour and cocoa; set aside.
3. With paddle attachment, cream the butter, sugars, salt and vanilla until smooth and creamy. Add melted chocolate and mix until evenly distributed.
Beat eggs and then add to the butter mix. It will curdle. This is normal.
4. Add the flour-cocoa mix by thirds to the butter-chocolate-egg mix. Mix until just combines and no streaks of flour or butter show.
5. Put batter into cookie press, and press onto cookie sheet, space about 1/2 inch apart. (You can roll this out and use a cookie cutter instead of a press, but chill dough for 30 minutes before rolling it out.)
6. Bake for 8-10 minutes; rotate pans half way through baking to cook evenly.
Cool on cookie racks; transfer hot cookies from trays to racks immediately out of the oven to prevent over cooking by heat transfer and to prevent a soggy bottom from condensation.
16 ounces of white chocolate
4 ounces of heavy cream
1 TBSP Espresso powder
1. Melt chocolate over double boiler; remove from heat. Use a good brand of chocolate like El Ray or Callebeaut.
2. Boil cream, add espresso powder, and stir until smooth. Pour over melted chocolate and stir with spoon [not whisk] until smooth. Let set until thick enough to pipe...this will take a few hours. Make this first, to shave off waiting time.
3. Pipe the cream onto the underside [flat] of cookie, then sandwich with another cookie. Press just enough to bring cream to edge of cookie.
Do not refrigerate these cookies! Keep stored in tin with tight lid at room temperature.
Anecdotes and Apple Cores
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