For some time now, my days literally run away, in a vortex of commitments that I can hardly count: there's work, of course, but then there's the photography class, the Arabic cuisine class, tutoring, and then there's my private life, going out with friends, phone calls, e-mail and SMS. Then there's the blog, and I don't have to tell you how my presence here decreased a lot: now I have a weekly "appointment" with you, but its importance for me stays always the same.
And yet I feel like I'm forgetting something that contributes to fill my days … ah, yes, then there are my dreams, the ones that make me sigh as a hero of some Nineteenth century novel thinking about Paris in spring, the ones that had me convinced that I have to join a singing or a professional cooking class… these dreams (and many others, but I won't make a list) are some sort of a background, and they're ready to creep into my thoughts while I wait for a green light or while I'm in line to pay in a supermarket. And they make me realize that, despite my current frenzy, but I could call it chaos (and I don't know if it actually gives birth to a dancing star, like Nietzsche said), I still have so much to do, places to see and people worth knowing. We must "only" channel our forces better, chasing the right dreams, big or small ones.
But when your forces aren't enough, when we would like a word of comfort and there is no one who can give us that, no one who can give us his/her shoulder to lean on?
Well, there are motivational cookies, then. These cookies can say everything we would love to hear … a simple "Good morning" (Buongiorno) when you wake up alone in the morning and you would like someone at your side, a "Come on" ("Daje", in roman dialect) to give yourself a shake (a everything that I love hate Roman), an "alegher" (something Piedmontese that means "stay happy") to remember yourself that everything will be okay, a "hold on" (Resisti) for the darkest moments.
EXTRA-VIRGIN OLIVE OIL COOKIES
Recipe from Jul's Kitchen. I suggest you to read her post about the use of olive oil instead of butter in confectionery.
Ingredients (about 60 cookies)
* 330 g plain flour
* 200 g rice flour
* 200 g sugar
* grated peel of a lemon
* a pinch of salt
* 250 g light extra virgin olive oil
* 50 g water (even less)
* 80 g egg yolks (about 4 yolks)
Sieve the flours and put them on a working surface, make a well in the middle and add the sugar, the salt and the grated lemon peel.
Pour the egg yolks into your immersion blender container. Put the hand blender to the very bottom of the container, start pouring the olive oil in a thin stream and blend until it thickens into mayonnaise (it's a matter of just a few minutes); if it becomes too thick, add some water (even less than 50 g) and blend.
Pour the mayonnaise into the centre of the flour and mix it with the sugar using your fingers to make a soft dough. When it's totally mixed, rub all the ingredients with your fingertips and make crumbles, then start kneading until you have a nice and smooth ball of dough. Roll it out roughly between two foils of parchment paper and place it in the fridge for about 30 minutes.
Heat the oven to 347° F (175°C). Take the short crust pastry out of the fridge, unwrap it and roll the dough out to 5 mm thick and cut into desired shapes using cookie cutters. Place the cookies on a baking tin lined with previously greased parchment paper (or on non stick pans).
Bake the cookies for 12 to 15 minutes, until slightly golden. As soon as you remove them from the oven, they are still quite soft, so allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before moving them to a wire rack to cool completely.
[To the enemies of the goody-goody, however, I also thought about de-motivational cookies, cookies that punch the self-esteem of others, with an "epic fail" or a "you suck". For the bravest of you, I created a series of "say it with a cookies," aka "everything you ever wanted to say, but you're took it for you": cookies with swear words (from a simple "fuck" onwards), so you can give them to those you hate. If you're particularly infamous, you could also make them distasteful.. too much?]
I am always amazed by the power of words … just remove a letter or, in my case, just break a cookies, and an already powerful "resisti" (hold on) becomes much, much more (esisti = you exist). Tell me if it's not a sign of beauty and poetry of the language…