Tuesday, April 26, 2011
I keep telling myself that I'm on the home stretch. Only two more classes, a presentation, and two papers before I'm free. And by free, I mean chained to a lab bench until the end of August. Sounds exciting, huh? But I can't wait for some of the inherent flexibility that happens during summer research - I can take an hour or two out of my day to go on a run, I can traipse off on three day weekend adventures a bit more easily than when I have classes keeping me on a short leash. There will be visits to new babies, visits to new friends, visits to family. I can't wait - everyone has had to come visit us, because it has just been too difficult to get away for a weekend when I don't really know very far in advance what I'll need to get done for the following week. Case in point: I figured that the end of March would be incredibly easy for family to visit - little did I know that I'd be frantically writing a rough draft of a research paper, researching for another project, and coordinating a group presentation for the following Monday. Let's just say that I didn't get to visit with J's parents too very much that time.
So I'm looking forward to the summer. However, I keep on getting derailed - I keep forgetting what I need to get done for each day. I have completely checked out, with very little interest in actually getting those final edits done on that research paper that's due in a week. The presentation I have today? Yeah. Haven't really practiced that one too much. I'm much more focused on trying to find a reasonable time to get my runs in now that it's godawfully hot and humid here already. Seriously, 90* in April is not okay.
In the meantime though, I keep bringing baked goods into my classes, I keep sending baked goods to J's office. And while I'm not always sure that he isn't hoarding them in his desk drawer, I got wonderful feedback on these cornmeal shortbread cookies. Well, who wouldn't love them? Cornmeal in cookies gets me every time - it adds just a little bit of sweetness, just enough texture to make me like shortbread. And given my general dislike for shortbread, that's key. (What is also key is not to use polenta or coarse-ground cornmeal. Unless you like breaking your teeth on these cookies...) It probably didn't hurt that I made a half batch but more than doubled the lemon zest. Lemon zest is good stuff, people. Oh! And while I love Dorie's use of plastic bags to roll cookies out in so that you can chill them then cut the bag open in order to get uniform cookies, I'm a plastic bag hoarder. You see, I wash and reuse my plastic bags, so the idea of sacrificing one? No thanks. I rolled these up into a log and did the refrigerate-slice-bake thing, and it worked perfectly.
Last Week: A Tourtely Apple Tart
Next Week: Basic Marbled Loaf Cake (one of the first requests from J - this time though, I refuse to do the chocolate-mint combo. *shudder*)