Listened to the show Saturday and it was not bad. Was trying out a new recipe for lemon biscotti which I must say turned out quite well and that’s what I told Mr. S, who called from Vancouver where he’s giving a talk called “Being Who You Are in Life and Love.” Before he got on the plane, he’d asked what I thought about it all, which he often does as he prepares a talk, and which makes me feel pretty good. It’s nice to be asked your opinion. What I told him pretty much jives with what he thinks, and that’s not a surprise because Mr. S and I tend to match.
It’s good to match. It’s what helps form friendships and loves, and it’s a fine feeling when — with all the conflict flyin’ around — someone says, “Yes, I believe that, too” or “So do I!!” To find a kindred spirit is pretty dang fine. You know the feeling. You sit there on a bench waiting for the bus and the person next to you, turns out, is reading the same book you are. Or grew up in the same county you did. Or likes to make pie, too. Or loves the sound of loons calling in the night. It’s a thread thing, and we walk along spinning a kind of tapestry with our lives by joining ourselves together with common threads of interest.
I think it’s how Mr. S and I found each other. So many little matches. We both love pizza. We both enjoy walks in the woods and good movies and cooking new things and the notion of the Perfect Treehouse. We both sneak cookie dough and do cross word puzzles and drink good whiskey and take naps now and then, and road trips, too, and love Christmas shopping. Of course, we have our differences, thank the Lord, and I long to head out fishing while he prefers a round of golf with his friends. I’m an out-and-about person while he’d rather be home. He’d rather iron his shirts, while I toss mine in the dryer awhile. Our differences balance out nicely with how we’re alike, and I have this with many of my dear friends, too.
The important thing, though, as partners, is that our fundamental beliefs match. We both want the best for our kids. We both want to do good in the world. We have the same ideas about a Higher Power and an afterlife, and we both are generally organized and appreciate a clean house. And the nice thing, the Fine Thing, after years and decades, is that, now and then, we make a discovery. Something new pops up, and he likes it and I like it and we say, at once, “We match!” Roasted garlic, the burned portion of a roasted marshmallow, sitting on the porch listening to coyotes, building an outdoor pizza oven, the shade of blue we’re considering for the living room. Small things. Threads. Connection.
Nice to have it with all kinds of people as the days go flying by. Sure is.
Here’s a new favorite I didn’t think would go over well but did, and is, and I plan to keep this recipe handy. Sounds a bit fancy, but biscotti is pretty simple, and it’s as good as most cookies I’ve ever had. Make a batch for the cabin, or for a summer picnic, or wrap it up for a gift when you’re wondering what to give. You know what they say: “Easy peasy lemon squeezy.”
2¾ cups flour
1 cup sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1½ T lemon zest
2 T fresh lemon juice
1 T oil
1½ cups powdered sugar
2 T milk
⅛ tsp fresh lemon juice
Preheat oven to 350. In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, sugar, and baking powder.
In a separate bowl mix together the lemon zest, lemon juice, oil and eggs; add to flour mixture and stir well. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface, knead lightly 7 to 8 times and divide in half. Shape each half into an 8-inch long roll. Lightly grease a baking sheet and place the rolls on it, leaving a few inches between each. Flatten each roll to 1-inch thickness and bake 30 minutes.
Remove the rolls from baking sheet and let cool for 10 minutes (a wire rack is helpful). Cut each roll diagonally into 15 half-inch slices and place the slices, cut sides down, on the baking sheet.
Reduce oven temperature to 325 and bake 10 minutes. Turn biscotti over and bake an additional 10 minutes. Remove from baking sheet, and cool completely.
For the glaze, put the powdered sugar in a medium-sized bowl and add in the milk and lemon juice and whisk it all together. Once the biscotti have completely cooled, dip the flat side of the biscotti into the glaze, or you can use a spatula to spread it. Lay the biscotti cut sides down until the glaze is completely dry.
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