Saturday, July 5, 2008

A Baker's Holiday


The shop was closed yesterday, the 4th of July.  We slept in.  At 4:30am the dogs got concerned.  And hungry.  I feed them most days at 3am.  Tallulah nibbled on my toes.  Pandora sighed.  And Inu sat at the side of the bed, staring at me, willing me to wake.

I shuffled downstairs and fed them.  Made sure that the doggie door wasn't blockaded.  "You're on your own until I get a few more hours, you stinkers."

We still came to the shop.  Ray had paperwork and the side lawn to mow.  I had dough to roll.  And while I was making Danish, the phone rang off the hook.  Every two minutes, another call.  I didn't pick up.  It was, technically, my day off.  


Except for rolling the Danish.   Please don't fret, because something peculiar comes over me whenever I have free time.  I want to bake and cook.  I enjoy baking on demand for the shop.  But when I'm at liberty to play as I like, to have the pleasure of feeding my husband, I am most happy in the kitchen.  

I made pasta.  Specifically, a Raviolini stuffed with a garlic and basil laced spinach blended with soft Italian cheese.  Inside the little spinach nest, I rested an egg yolk.  It's a dish Ray craved. He'd seen chef Odette Dada make it on St. Martha's show.  And we have an abiding fascination with anything with an egg on top, inside or just along for the ride.  We once walked 45 minutes through Madrid just to eat  garlic soup served with an egg floating sunnyside up in the broth.  We'd seen a picture of it in a book.  We reeked for days.

I didn't have 00 flour.  The fine grain for pasta dough.

 Instead I used AP.  It still felt good.  4 cups of flour.  6 eggs beaten and then added to a well in the middle of the flour, using a fork to whisk the flour gently into the egg.   And I kneaded by hand for ten minutes, wondering if this would do for my workout.  And decided that it was. I'd rather spend my time enjoying homemade pasta with Ray on Independence Day.  That's how I choose to pursue my happiness.  I hope you took some time to pursue your own.