Monday, February 17, 2014

Toruses, aka Tori

     I've been on a donut kick lately. I don't like storebought donuts very often, unless I'm somewhere where you can buy them warm, just from the fryer. The health police will probably come knocking on my door when I admit this, but I've made two batches in the past two weeks. I'm trying to manage my donut desires without clogging my arteries. Here's how I do that:
(1) Fry them in shortening (or lard, if you eat meat). They absorb a lot less fat that if they were fried in oil. I don't understand the chemistry behind this, but my experience bears it out.
(2) An entire batch of donuts is rather too much for a single person. Share with your neighbors! I have not found a single person who says "no" when I knock on their door with a plate of fresh, warm donuts.
(3) Donuts freeze. Later, I can microwave them and it's almost (but not quite) as good as when they were first made.
      I didn't have to work today, so I tackled two big projects - taxes and bagel-making. I won't bore you with a saga about my taxes, except to say that I spent a good chunk of today trying to convince banks and employers that they should send me forms even though it's my late husband's name that is on the forms. But the bagels turned out great! I used the recipe from the King Arthur Flour Baker's Companion. (Thanks to the cousin who gifted it to me many years ago). When forming the dough balls, my hands instantly remembered how to form perfect, smooth spheres, a skill I perfected while making pizzas when I was working at the restaurant a decade ago. And then I topped them with lots of sesame and poppy seeds. Now I have a dozen, minus the one I ate, sitting in my freezer destined for delicious breakfasts.

Thursday, February 13, 2014


     Today would have been Andrew's 31st birthday. My workplace was closed, so I worked from home, and it was a sad, quiet day. 30 seems like a very small number, when it's all the years you're given to live. I'm sad for all the things that he won't get to do any more - the physics he won't do, the cats he won't adopt, the beer he won't get to drink. Life is a pretty terrific gift, and I wish he had received more of it.
     I tried to do a few things during the day that would bring me and others happiness. I baked a cake. I took the dog on two extra-long walks, and then treated her to a dried pig ear (not a treat that this vegetarian would choose, but Ada likes them). I gave the cat some catnip, and I invited people for dinner.
     I'm grateful for the family and friends that called and texted me today, to tell me they were thinking of me. I'm grateful for the friends who double-checked my plans, to make sure I wouldn't be alone, and the friends that threw a party in his honor last weekend. I'm grateful for the new friends who came to dinner, and then asked lots of questions about Andrew, so that I'd have a chance to talk about my memories. Thanks, everyone.