Tea was lovely…

Tea was lovely yesterday. My favorite of the dishes was probably the sausage-tomato tart. Using this basic recipe, although you do have to be careful not to overbake the pie shells in the first step. (I used frozen pie shells from the store.) That recipe makes just enough for two deep-dish quiches, if you put in a goodly amount of filling. For filling, saute two turkey sausages crumbled with onion and a bit of crushed red pepper. Layer on bottom of pie shell, fill with custard, layer sliced tomatoes on top. Yumyum. I wish I had some leftover for breakfast, but it's all gone.

The other thing that turned out especially well was the chocolate-strawberry layer cake. Followed Cook's Illustrated recommendation on the filling -- chop strawberries, macerate in a bit of sugar for an hour, crush result and spread on bottom layer of cake. Slice remaining strawberries in half and layer around the edge of that layer, so that they're visible when you put the other layer on top. Hmm...I'm not sure that's clear at all -- the illustrations are in the latest issue of the magazine. You can see their recipe if you go to their site and sign up with your e-mail for a free trial. It really is a great magazine.

It's been a weird day so far -- Kavi woke up at 3:30, wide awake and cheerful, so after some futile efforts to get her back to sleep, we came downstairs and watched kids' tv for three hours (she watched, I curled around her on the couch and tried to doze). She finally fell asleep, but only for an hour -- she's up and cheerful again now. We'll see how long that lasts. Now she's playing and I've been eating banana bread and reading Mama Ph.D., a collection of essays that is alternately touching and depressing. It's also making me aware how lucky I've been -- for all my frustrations trying to balance parenting and writing and teaching, I have had SUCH better circumstances than most of these women. In large part due to a) Kevin, and b) having enough money for a nanny. Time to count my blessings again.

It's snowing like crazy outside -- hopefully for the last time. The poor tulips are entirely buried in snow, ditto the hyacinths. The mini-daffodils aren't doing much better. It's supposed to warm up again tomorrow, so we'll just have to wait and see what survives...

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