Sunday, March 21, 2010
Living in someone else’s apartment is not easy. You have to respect their space. Their habits. Their routines. Not that I hate it, but it’s just means you don’t have the same freedom. You don’t have to bother if a can of pressurized coffee grinds exploded and sprinkled the kitchen counter. You don’t have to care if you spilled a little water on the floor.
So since I moved to Toronto, I’ve stepped out from the kitchen. I haven’t so much as turned on the oven. I rarely fry eggs! And I love eggs. I have my excuses—a new job, too exhausted to cook up a dinner, not motivated to bake, paranoia of setting off the fire alarm and alerting the entire apartment building…
But tonight is a different story. I’ve forced myself to begin the morning with baking cookies. Orange polenta cookies. They’re in the oven right now. I’m watching them melt from their tiny tablespoon balls to round uneven treats, laced with a slightly golden brown edge. They look almost cherubic, soft, pudgy biscuits. They don’t look particularly special, just a bit of glitter from the sugar granules and flecks of orange zest. It seems like an ordinary cookie.
They could be that chubby little girl in kindergarten class. She’s friendly, but shy and is a follower in her circle of friends. But she sparkles. She has the sweetest smile that lights up the classroom.
It’s not your usual melt in your mouth treat. Polenta (ground cornmeal) gives it an extra kick of flavour and bite. The citrus gives it a fresh spring spirit.
Try it. Who cares if you make mess. Bringing those sweet buttery smells into the space makes it more homey. It’s a good feeling. It reminds you why you loved baking in the first place—to feed others and see how their eyes light up when they bite into something pleasantly unexpected.
Thanks to Jamie Oliver for the recipe: Recipe here!