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*this* John W. Hays' take on things and experiences

Archive for January 28th, 2023

Almond Braid

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In order to practice standing with 50% weight on her repaired ankle, our intrepid hero chose to bake an almond braid the other day. Well, not just one almond braid.

“I just followed the recipe,” Cyndie said. “Next time I will cut the ingredients in half.”

A little bit out of practice after spending most of her time in a recliner the last three months instead of in the kitchen, I heard her regretting she forgot to glaze the braids with brushed-on egg whites. I noted her almond sprinkling looked a bit uneven, kind of like her balance as she occasionally hops to and fro, reaching for utensils, pans, or ingredients.

I don’t mean to appear insensitive with my critiques. She always encourages my honest opinions and sometimes calls me her “Paul Hollywood” when I provide insights about the dough being a little over or underdone or desired flavors not coming through.

The first bite was absolutely delightful, though having heard her mention the missing glaze, I noted the improvement it might have provided. As we discussed it, Cyndie clarified the braids ended up over-baked. Without the glaze, deciding when to bring them out of the oven based on appearance didn’t work so well.

The recipe suggested a bake time of 15-30 minutes which was a significant span of minutes. Possibly double the time! That left too much room for error.

I did my part to help justify her making two of them by eating more slices than my body needed. Then I found out she froze the extra one, so my excesses weren’t necessary. I tried to justify my extra bites by saying I was just “straightening the edge” but that didn’t really apply in this case. The cut edge was never “not” straight.

Last night, Cyndie felt discomfort in her ankle and said it felt like one of the screws was coming loose. Yeah, I needed to bite my tongue to not jump on that inviting opportunity to poke fun about loose screws.

The big concern for me is whether a new problem in her ankle will interrupt her comeback in the kitchen. Good thing she made two braids, just in case.



Written by johnwhays

January 28, 2023 at 11:28 am