Friday, May 9, 2008

Grab Bag Friday: Linda Urban's Bada-Bings

This week, I came across a recipe for some deeelicious chocolate cookies with a zing. In Linda Urban's smart and funny middle-grade novel, A Crooked Kind of Perfect, 10 year old Zoe's dad has a penchant for mail-order Living Room University courses. One of his courses is in cookie making.

So it may come as no surprise that on Ms. Urban's website, you can find a recipe for Bada-Bings...fudgy, chocolate cookies with dried cherries (or cranberries) to give just the perfect balance of sweet with a tang. Yum!

Kevin and I have been loving these cookies. And they're so rich, that I'm actually perfectly satisfied after one or two. Which is unheard of. Gingersnaps, for instance...I could easily eat the whole pan in one sitting. :)

(We halved the recipe and it still made two cookie sheets full.)

I suggest picking up A Crooked Kind of Perfect, whipping up a batch of Bada-Bings, and having yourself a *lovely* weekend!

As for the book, here's the jacket-flap sum-up:

Ten-year-old Zoe Elias has perfect piano dreams. She can practically feel the keys under her flying fingers; she can hear the audience's applause. All she needs is a baby grand so she can start her lessons, and then she'll be well on her way to Carnegie Hall.

But when Dad ventures to the music store and ends up with a wheezy organ instead of a piano, Zoe's dreams hit a sour note. Learning the organ versions of old TV theme songs just isn't the same as mastering Beethoven on the piano. And the organ isn't the only part of Zoe's life that's off-kilter, what with Mom constantly at work, Dad afraid to leave the house, and that odd boy, Wheeler Diggs, following her home from school every day.

Yet when Zoe enters the annual Perform-O-Rama organ competition, she finds that life is full of surprises—and that perfection may be even better when it's just a little off center.

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