Wednesday, October 24, 2012
Today was one of those days when I felt like yelling at everyone. Oh wait. I did yell at some people. Although I had a legitimate gripe, I probably overreacted when I yelled at my mother and sister. (What, who me? Would I ever do such a thing? Never...)
My father was admitted to the hospital last night. He's down to a dangerously low weight that I could not have previously fathomed. He couldn't eat OR drink. He's in pain, he broke out in a weird rash, and it's just generally uncomfortable for him to live and breath right now. This is on the heels of his last week of chemo, so I suppose it's not a big surprise. They treated him very aggressively, and his body has responded very aggressively. So, now he's on the floor where my sister works being taken care of by her coworkers. She convinced him to go last night, and brought Micah to visit him today hoping it would raise his spirits.
After finishing today's deadline, I wandered down to the kitchen to experiment with a little homebaked happiness. I've decided to lean in to my interest in cooking and baking. Part of my desire to live a recovered life entails building a comfort level with food. Food is not the enemy. It sustains life, and there is no reason why I cannot embrace it. As far as I am concerned, it's all a matter of moderation. And I've been really happy that I can bake for others. I have so many able and willing bodies consuming my treats. So, I can't eat it all myself anyway.
Today's recipe? Traditional mincemeat cookies. Don't turn up your nose until you have tried them. The perfect autumn treat in one neat little package, they are spicy and fruity. They remind me of my mother's parents, as my grandmother baked them and my grandfather happily consumed them. It's easy, weirdly easy. Here is the link to the recipe. I always use this brand: NoneSuch. That's also tradition. None Such Mincemeat Prize Cookies
I did reconstitute the condensed package, but I don't think you technically have to for cookies. I did it, because I wanted the spicy flavor to penetrate the batter as well, but as I said, I think you can just crumble the mixture in to the cookie batter. These cookies are pretty light and airy. I do not glaze them to save calories. You can if you want.
I also used Smart Balance Omega 3 buttery sticks. I am trying to phase out shortening from our life, although it will be a painful transition come Thanksgiving because my Grandma Evelyn's delicious, secret, hand-me-down pie crust recipe gets its flaky awesomeness from Crisco. But it's hydrogenated heart attack in a can. So, the Smart Balance sticks work just fine and I am sure Grandma would have agreed and understand. Other than my mother, she was the most practical woman I ever met.
That said, I think this calls for the three generation photo:
Evelyn, Jean and Marisa. Three generations of New England bakers.