Di Sarrona Amaretto Pera (plus Kiarostami and Juliette Binoche)

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You don’t need to tell me that it’s a very bad habit.I can’t help it.I love it:I climb in bed, half-planning to go to sleep, but then plug in my earbuds, and end up watching a Netscape movie on my iphone.Sometimes half.Sometimes the whole thing.

Sometimes explosions and car chases.This week it was Kiaostami’s Certified Copy(about as awful a title as Abbas Kiarostami is a wonderful name) (and bravo to Netflicks for actually making some interesting stuff available for streaming) (and who are the jerks that gave it 3.5 stars?--Juliette Binoche deserves at least that many just for being Juliette Binoche).Okay, I'm probably being pretentious.I admit I love slow movies and subtitles.

This is a little film.No crashes.No gunfights.Perfect for an iphone with earbuds in bed.

I won’t give too much away in case you watch it, but it does have a long-haired texting teenager, a mediocre bottle of wine, a golden tree before which delightfully superstitious (and impatient) young lovers say their vows.There is waiting and wondering, critiques and interruptions, originals and fakes, walking together and lot of lagging behind. Some memories remembered, others forgotten or lost.There are young lovers and old, believers and skeptics, and one piece of unsought but remarkably astute fatherly advice (this seemed so un-European) from a stranger.(Actually, now that I think of it, there’s some unsought motherly intuition as well—how gratifying when the wise get to share their wisdom, if only by the way they walk and hold each other up.)There’s a secret little prayer (though it’s overseen) whispered in the same church where Juliette removes her bra.(This astounded me:I know next to nothing about Kiarostami, but since when did film-makers start portraying the church as a place to ask for help and experience a little liberation!)

And in each scene, whatever’s going on in the background seems to be what matters most.The foreground—the action, the plot—just keeps getting in the way.Perhaps I should revise my recommendation and caution against a 3.5 inch screen.

What else:

A couple naked statues in a fountain.

Three languages.

Three or four dark flights of stairs.

A marriage bed.

A happy accordion. (While this is no Last Tango in Paris--certainly there’s no wild nameless romanceless sex--there is a top floor, and a Frenchwoman and a Englishman in Italy.)

An open window.

Bells tolling.

An implicit invitation to go ahead and ask for whom they toll.)

There are no refugees, but surely all transplanted people carry some of their loneliness with them.(I just looked him up. Our friend, Kiarostami, is عباسکیارستمی from Iran.No wonder he understands displacement.)

And, no—no granola.

But the reason I bring all this up is that I’ve dared imagine that our January granola wouldn’t be out of place in that little Italian Courtyard.

We’ve named it Amaretto Pear.

Di Saronna Amaretto Pera if you prefer.

Delicate, soft; the sadness of bitter almonds, the sweetness of pears, the wisdom of almond oil.

(And also a few plums, nectarines, and marzipan to keep them company—see below for the ingredients and a confession.)

It comes with artwork by Becky Joy (who gave us her permission to reproduce for commercial purposes her beautiful picture). Check her out via google.

Clearly I’m getting carried away. I will stop.It’s close to midnight.I’m heading to bed. It's late. I have my phone.

One small piece of unsought advice:we made a first batch of 125 pounds, but 80 went out in today’s mail to granola-of-the-month subscribers.You can do the math.We’ll start selling at the farmer’s markets tomorrow.Perhaps we’ll make more.No promises.

Buonanotte.

Oats (org), honey (pesticide-free from Aquidneckhoney), cranberries (cranberries, sugar, safflower oil), almond oil, canola oil (org), granulated cane juice, coconut (org), almonds, sesame seeds (org), barley (org), macaroon paste, pears, oat bran (org), wheat germ, pecans, sunflower seeds (org), flax seeds (org), nectarines, plums, amaretto liquor, oat fiber, sea salt, cinnamon, almond extract, nutmeg, cloves.

Confession:

While we usually make every effort to be all-natural, we did include fruit and macaroon paste in this recipe that contain sulfur dioxide or potassium sorbate.

The dried fruit is superior quality from Bella Viva Orchards in California.

As much as we hate the chemicals, we’ve had lousy luck using (especially stone fruit) without it.

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