Sometimes it is hard to start a Monday. Other weeks I can wake up raring to go. But sometimes it is just hard. Choosing the right direction in life isn't always about the compass. It's about passion and love and common sense. And learning how to stand on your own two feet. It's the common sense that makes our choices so tough. Some days common sense just slides right on by, but our direction takes us straight down the path of unknown.
Robert Frost chose his road "because it was glassy and wanted wear". He "took the one less travelled by and that has made all the difference." I'm still waiting to find the difference and wonder if sometimes the road is already chosen without my realizing it. Soon I may be sauntering down it without thought. I'm on the journey but perhaps not with it. Sometimes I find myself plodding ahead with no gusto. The gusto is gone and I'm left with questions that should have had answers long ago. Avoiding answering them takes me further down the path to parts unknown. Other times I run. I don't enjoy the view. I'm just anxious to finish. But life is never finished until we are in the ground or have given up. The best time on the road is when I can't wait to explore and find something new, something exciting, something mesmerizing, something that makes me want to start life all over again. Yes, it is that good. No cautious walking on this road, just energy and life and exhilaration at all that can lie ahead. I want that road. Yes, I do.
Often our choices find us soul searching for the right path, but still marching bravely forward to the point of no return. But when does one know it to be the point of no return? Maybe the point is never succeeding at what the world views success to be, but yet never giving up. And I wonder isn't not giving up, succeeding? Perservering, never losing sight of what the goal might be, despite pressure from everyone, everywhere, that you are losing, you are a loser; but somehow you just can't quit. It's your way or the highway, baby and why can't others just see what you see? Is that stupidity or just the righteous vision of what is going on in your head? And why is it so hard to come up with the right answer that everyone else already seems to know? The answer that would make everyone happy, but probably not you. No. Not you. Is life so simple?
Is it because you are on the wrong road or the right road, or maybe you just aren't ready to get off the damn road? You've gone to far and there is no turning back? Often, we are so busy on the road, we can't see the forest through the trees. Other times we see the trees and not the forest and no, this isn't a college philosophy essay. But it is late at night and I can't sleep. I guess I'm to busy pondering what is right and what is wrong. I thought by the age of 55 that I'd have figured it out, but my brain seems to be on overtime. Or life does. At least mine is. And here I am. And that beats the alternative.
And it's late. The dogs are quiet, the house is quiet, the rabbit catcher is talking in his sleep and I am here in the dimmed lights, in front of this bright screen pondering who knows what. And the swamp cooler that couldn't keep me cool in the bedroom is making me cold in the den. And I am thinking that this is a food blog and there is a point here somewhere and the point is that Monday would be, could be, really good if this was waiting for me hot out of the oven to start my week. Something gentle, something soothing, to start the beginning of what I hope will be a good week.
Strawberry Spiral Biscuit Pie
Biscuit Dough (you favorite recipe or you can use this)
2 c unbleached flour
1 T baking powder
1/2 t salt
1 stick cold, unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch dice
3/4 c cold milk
1 T melted butter
2/3 c strawberry jam (I used my black pepper jam)
4 1/2 c strawberries, washed and hulled, cut into halves or quarters if very big
1 T cornstarch
1/2 t cinnamon
1/3 to 1/2 c sugar, depending on the sweetness of the berries
Preheat oven to 450.
Pour flour, baking powder and and salt into bowl. Using a pastry blender, cut butter into flour until it resembles coarse meal. Drizzle the milk over and stir until it is incorporated into the flour. Gather dough into a ball and knead once or twice on floured board. Gently pat the dough into rectangle about 10 by 18 inches.
Brush the dough lightly with melted butter. Spread jam over the rectangle, leaving a 1/2 inch border. Starting at the long side, roll up the dough jelly roll style and pinch the seam closed. Using a sharp knife, cut the log into four pieces and then cut those pieces into three pieces so you have 12 biscuits.
Mix strawberries with sugar, cornstarch and cinnamon. Spoon filling into 9 inch glass dish. Place 8 biscuits around the perimeter of the dish and 4 in the center. Don't push the biscuits into the strawberries.
Bake the pie for 20 minutes or until the top is golden brown and the filling is bubbling. Lower the oven temperature to 350, loosely cover the pie with foil and bake 15 minutes longer. Cool for 30 minutes on rack before serving.
This pie is also great for dessert with ice cream. Or not. And feel free to use your favorite fruit and jam. This is a comfort dish as I say; one that soothes the soul. And even if you don't need soothing, it still tastes damn good!
German Apple Pancake
Belgian Liege Waffles
Blueberry Nut Bread
Chocolate Krantz Cake or Babka