February 29

I love that today is a leap day- it seems like a special pocket of time.

Outside, the cheery trills of robins are balancing the soft dreariness of grey sky on the verge of rain. This afternoon, the sun shone and lit the pink cherry blossom and warmed the rug. In the morning, as on all mornings here, sea gulls dotted the field like sheep.

This past week there were some glorious spring storms, erratic wind/rain/sun and all colours in the sky. I dug out my paints. I finally bought an umbrella. Days were segmented by cappucinos, africanos, earl grey and herbal teas. Our rabbits are molting winter down. The daffodils are nodding bright heads.

I hurt my back by lifting a bin incorrectly and have spent the past few days feeling like a century has been tacked on to my years. It’s easing up now and I am so glad. (That icy-hot stuff is so weird!) How easy it is to take health for granted.

I’m including the recipe for what I wish I was making right now. I like to make and freeze a batch of these cookies to have on hand – a gift to our future selves.

Chocolate Apricot Pecan Cookies
Adapted from Leslie Mackie’s Macrina Cookbook. The original recipe does not call for pecans, so feel free to leave them out. 

In a medium large bowl, stir together with a whisk then set aside:
1 1/4 c whole wheat pastry flour
1 c all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp finely ground espresso beans

In a medium small bowl or in a KitchenAid mixer, cream until light and fluffy:
1 c butter, softened
1 c good raw/brown sugar such as panela-rapadura

Add eggs to creamed butter and sugar one at a time, mixing well, adding vanilla with second egg:
2 eggs, room temperature
2 tsp vanilla

Add dry ingredients and stir to mix until flour is just incorporated. Then stir in:
3/4 cup dried unsulphured apricots, chopped
3/4 cup pecans, toasted and cooled, roughly crushed by hand
8-9 oz dark chocolate, coarsely chopped

Let dough rest in the fridge for at least an hour before scooping and baking cookies. Or scoop then freeze dough to later thaw and bake whenever you need a few cookies! Makes about 16 cookies. Bake at 350° for 10-12 minutes. 

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