It’s cozier around the baker’s bench since last donning a bandana. My very dramatic January trip and fall resulted in an unplanned two-week hiatus. Since then, temporary walls have snuggled everything 14” closer while workmen toil on the other side. There is a steady staccato of nail gun, drill, and belt sander. The double door commercial fridge has traveled to an adjacent wall and the freezer stands where once stood a single door fridge. For the life of me, I cannot retain this information, resulting in a sizable number of frozen lemons. Oven doors open and shut perilously close to the brave souls sporting oven mitts. I am one of those brave souls.
The milder temps of December have yielded to true January cold and the first flurries of the season. Snow covers the ground in fits and starts, brown leaves tightly curled beneath a Valentine’s doily of white. There is animated discussion concerning this year’s conversation heart cookies. Pleading for nothing too saccharine, I am assured my tag phrase “I tolerate you” will emblazon the flourless chocolate cakes.
There are empty pie shells in the freezer hoping to be filled with something other than cold storage apples and buttermilk custard. I can offer citrus, frozen cherries and a wealth of Thanksgiving cranberries (still) that refuse to surrender.
I’m leaning towards introducing the cherries to the cranberries by means of an open-faced galette, maybe with a splash of orange to brighten things up. It will also require less rolling, more folding which I can maneuver quite well with my left hand. I’ve had weeks to practice.
With newfound appreciation for my left hand, I am at the same time deeply respectful of the right digits, particularly the pinky. The hand specialist who gave me the green light to return to work suggested thinking before doing. Coming from a doctor who based on his appearance, looked to be just about Bar Mitzvah age, he offered sage advice.
I am thinking before grabbing a gallon of milk with just thumb and index finger. Taking a moment to access whether it’s sensible to squeeze between worktable, oven doors and another bandana-clad baker. Considering open-faced pies that roll up with one hand instead of the lattice and double crust variations that require two. Change is hard, but not impossible.
What’s impossible is when life gives you frozen lemons, you’re stuck with frozen lemons.
Professional Pie-isms & Seasonal Sarcasm