Posted by: lisetta | December 6, 2008

Limoncello cookies

Tears freeze in my heart as it snows on the town. What is this weariness that penetrates my soul?

My rip on the first line of Verlaine’s, “Il pleure dans mon couer comme il pleut sur la ville,” which echoes through my mind each time it rains. Tonight, as I walked alone the many blocks in the snow to the holiday party, the depth of wisdom in the words rang a little too true. Last year friends and I snagged a nearby parking spot and walked in the rain together.

Every detail about that day last year remains vivid. Meeting in the elevator, the play at the Walnut St. theater, the meal at Nam Phuong, our wearing of jeans, my showing him the ceramics I’ve made …. sigh. I still want the idea of him. Why can’t I have it (with someone else, of course)?

I was much happier then. Though I’ve been trying to overcome the all-too-familiar pangs of depression, on days like today they are hard to override. Required to cook something for the party this year, I chose what’s sunny and light: limoncello cookies. Made with ricotta cheese and lemon zest, I hoped that their levity might counteract the gravity of my thoughts.

Limoncello cookies

2 cups  flour
2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
1 cup ricotta cheese
2 tablespoons limoncello
1 tablespoon lemon zest

Mix the dry ingredients and set aside.  Cream the butter and sugar, then add the egg and beat some more. When light, add the ricotta, limoncello and lemon zest. Stir in the dry ingredients and you’re done. Spoon mounds onto a cooking sheet and bake at 350 for about 15 minutes, until the edges are brown.

Like the pizzelle I learned to make a few months ago, lemon ricotta cookies appear at many an Italian American social function. Marni’s daughter Lila rejected them as “too crunchy”, and I saw another left half-eaten on the coffee table. Ha ha. Wonder if any of the adults tried one. I thought they were tasty, but certainly not magical. I must return to the Spin studio as soon as I wake up tomorrow.

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