Turns out, my hip flexors didn’t find the same enjoyment. After my eighth race, I have hung up my sneakers for a bit. A couple weekends ago, with the Marine Corps marathon approaching in my city, I was having marathon envy. Other than the high of crossing the finish line intact and knowing a humongous diet coke and Swedish fish were awaiting me, the best part of the lead-up to marathon day for me was always carbo-loading.
Carbo-what you ask?
That’s right, for one week every year I would eat as many carbs as I wanted to help fuel my system through the upcoming race. Now, complex carbs are recommended but damn, if I was running a marathon, I was having whatever carbs I wanted as a reward.
There were a lot of moving parts involved in running marathons and my mom and dad were there every step of the way. Including, for the eating leading up to the race. They were loyal spectators –okay, groupies-- at all my races. And being a groupie ain’t all it’s cracked up to be, even if it’s for your own child.
Being part of my marathon posse meant schlepping with me to the starting line of my first race in Chicago on a very cold and blustery morning and traipsing all over the city in the cold to see me at various mile markers. It also meant getting up at 3:30 am with me to catch the bus to the starting line of the Disney Marathon on a chilly January morning in Orlando. Not sure that was the “Happiest Place on Earth” that morning.
|Bleary-eyed with my dad at the Disney Marathon before heading to the starting line.|
Being my marathon groupies also meant that my parents joined me for the massive carbo-loading dinners on the eve of race day. As you may have gathered, my dad loved nothing more than to eat. Gosh, he would have been a good marathoner because he could carbo-load with the best of ‘em.
It was at the carbo-loading dinner before the Disney Marathon in 2001 that my dad coined a term non-marathoners and anti-Dr. Atkins folks all over the world should embrace and adopt.
After two huge bowls of pasta from a huge buffet of every kind of pasta and sauce imaginable and a huge pile of bread, I put my fork down and said UNCLE. Same for my mom. My dad sat at the table looking a bit full but not quite and with a twinkle in his eye asked me if he thought it was okay for him to keep eating even if the marathoner had stopped. Before I could answer he said, “Oh what the hell, I am sympathy carbo-loading for you, Little Flower! I’m going back for another round.”
Sympathy carbo-loading!? Right on, Dad!
My mom and I couldn’t stop laughing as my dad lurched toward the buffet and proudly told everyone that he was “sympathy carbo-loading because did you know my Little Flower is running the race tomorrow?”
Earlier this month with marathons on the brain, I decided to sympathy carbo-load as well for all my friends running races this month. Well, um, actually, I don’t really know anyone running. To be honest I really just needed some gratuitous carbs. BAD. And that’s why I made pumpkin biscotti with a cinnamon glaze.
The biscotti are incredibly easy to make. Simply combine the dry ingredients in one bowl, the wet ingredients in another and then combine the wet to the dry. I suggest dusting your hands with flour before combining the two as the dough will get sticky as you mix it together using your hands. The flour will keep most of the dough from sticking to your hands.
On a baking sheet and with the oven heated to 350 degrees, I arranged the dough in two loaves on a silpat mat.
After baking the biscotti for 30 to 40 minutes Bake for 30-40, I removed the biscotti from the oven and cooled until just slightly warm. Using a serrated knife (I recommend this one), I cut the biscotti into 1 inch wide pieces and laid each piece flat on the silpat mat. Then, I turned the oven down to 300 degrees and baked the biscotti for an additional 15-20 minutes. This will ensure they start to harden a bit to give you that nice crunch that really good biscotti have.
While the biscotti were cooling, I mixed up the cinnamon glaze which is very simple to do. Once the biscotti cooled, I dipped a spoon in the glaze and drizzled it over the biscotti.
|The finished product|