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Mrs. Sundberg's Recipe Collection - 12 tried-and-true--one for each month of the year--featuring an introduction and tips from Mrs. Sundberg herself

The Red Thread of Fate

February 14, 2014

Listened to the show Saturday and it was not bad. Still so cold but every day is a bit warmer. I've been baking a lot this week, too, and that helps with keeping the house warm. Baking cookies, mostly, in heart and snowflake shapes, but mostly hearts. I do cutouts a bit on the thick side, and once frosted they look almost like muffins but not quite. Almond-flavored with pink frosting all over the kitchen, and I'll be sharing them with friends, I'm thinkin', 'cause they're EVERYWHERE.

Been thinking about friends this week, and love in general. It's not hard to love people--though I have encountered a few who present a challenge--but maintaining a healthy friendship takes time, and good energy, and deserves both because friends are important. They really are. It's healthful to have friends. And having friends makes you feel good. The nice thing is that a good friendship will allow for time and space. You can come and go in each other's lives and the price is that you get to miss each other.

Somewhere along the way I learned about the red thread of fate, an East Asian belief that started up in Chinese legend. According to this myth, the gods tie a red cord around the ankles of people who are to meet one another in a certain situation or help each other in a certain way. (The Japanese say the thread is tied around the little finger.) The thread may stretch or get knotted up, but it won't ever break. (I'm wondering whether this has anything to do with how clumsy I am...)

I like the idea of threads of fate, and the thought of fine red filaments crossing here and there over the planet. I like the notion that some of us are meant to find each other, and we do, and will always remain connected. May your threads be many, and untangled, and strong. And may you continue to find, and to be found.

Here's a tangy treat to make for someone you love on cold winter day. An appetizer, perhaps, while the shrimp scampi or chicken potpie is in the works.

Bacon Wrapped Shrimp

1 pound large shrimp
⅓ cup chopped fresh basil
1½ T freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2-3 garlic cloves, minced
16 pieces thinly sliced bacon
½ cup prepared barbecue sauce (fruit-based is best)

Peel and devein shrimp, leaving tails on. Butterfly shrimp by cutting a slit along the back and gently pressing open.

Combine basil, Parmesan, and garlic in a small bowl. Gently pack basil mixture evenly in shrimp openings; press shrimp closed.

Cook bacon over medium heat until partially cooked. Drain on paper towels. Wrap each shrimp with 1 slice bacon, and place on greased baking sheet. Brush barbecue sauce over shrimp, and bake at 400° for 8 to 9 minutes.

Enjoy!

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