Friday, April 13, 2012

I am NOT a baker.

I am not a baker.

(these cupcake liners match my bedroom curtains. no joke.)  Not a baker like.."oh, you mean this six tiered butter cream sponge cake ornamented in hand spun sugar flowers? I just threw it together". No. I'm realllllly not a baker.

I WILL admit, I'm a decent cook. I'm no Ms. Giada /Emril/Flay/Dean however I can whip together some pretty tummy pleasing apps and a scrumptious main course when in the mood.  But baking....whoa. Those baker folks are a little different.

So, I ask my non-existent audience, what gives? How come a list loving, spreadsheet junkie, type A, ex (sigh) banker is truly lousy at the one aspect of preparing food that demands the same type of rigour and structure?

(have you SEEN the price of frozen blueberries these days. when did they become the saffron of the fruit clan?) This is, after all,  a creative journey I am on. I need to ask these questions.

It certainly ironic (says Alanis Morrisette) but I am big on reconciliation (insert banker pun here) and I can't quite reconcile this one. I associate baking with perfection. Everything has to be perfect. The perfect ratio. The perfect temperature. The perfect consistency. Or its a travesty. That's what the cookbooks tell you. You may as well pick up your bat and ball and head home.

I don't like that kind of pressure. Especially when it comes to desserts.

So I think my imaginary shrink might say, I avoid baking because its not forgiving. Its not gentle or sweet or soft or even nice. And I'm textbook conflict avoider.

So I cook. I don't bake. Because cookies that fall apart go in the garbage but meatballs that fall apart...well they become a bolognese sauce.

(okay, remember when I said I shoulda scoured that pot before I took a picture of it here? And then in the next post I said I shoulda shook the dirt off the radish here ? Do I learn? Nope, shoulda scoured the front of that oven rack too. sigh.) But since I had my son and have done a alot bit more baking I'm starting to learn....maybe it doesn't have to always be perfect.

I really wanted to bake today and had a very tight window, so found a recipe and literally - wong it. (past tense of wing it?) And kinda worked.

Sugar Crusted Blueberry Muffins.  People in my house ate them and are well enough to recount the experience. Go figure.

(it made 12 but Mr. sixtyone45 got a sample, do did yours truly and the last unaccounted for may or may not have accidentally got dropped on the kitchen floor. note to readers: things that come out of ovens are hot.) And I was a bit on the edge...crazy woman...swapping whole wheat flour for white, doubling the vanilla, blueberries instead of raspberries (someone please tell me how you make blueberry muffins without turning the batter purple????) 

I went rogue.

(I will never buy white cupcake liners again) And yet herein lies the result. Pretty fluffy well cooked muffins. The best part was I enjoyed the process. I didn't panic when I misread a couple steps in the recipe. I never got stressed that they weren't going to look/taste/be perfect.

I just made muffins.

Now come to think of it....not a bad philosophy to adopt.

Today I made muffins. 

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