This first new post is going to be about chocolate chip cookies eventually, so I had to share this pic of my all-time most popular cupcakes, the Cookie Monster. I can’t wait to make these again…
I have been stomping around for the last few weeks bummed out because I quit blogging a couple years ago, and it seems like the blogosphere has gotten enormous since then and I missed out. I had to quit whining about this and get back to blogging. Maybe I did get off the bus too soon, but no one was keeping me off the bus except myself! The last few weeks I’ve had so much to share I’ve hardly been able to contain myself. But I kept telling myself I couldn’t blog about these things unless I could do it “right”, so I just didn’t share at all. Idiot! (Slapping self in forehead) Whose “rules” was I living by???
So, world, I’m letting you know straight up, now, up front, right away: I CANNOT FOLLOW A RECIPE! There, I said it. Oh, and I DON’T WRITE RECIPES either. =D Those are the things I figured I’d have to do to make a blog that people would want to read. So, maybe no one will ever read this, but at least I’ll have a place to chronicle my own trials & tragedies in cooking, baking, photography, writing, and maybe other stuff, too. That way, when I need to make cream cheese frosting again I won’t kick myself thinking I should have freaking wrote down what I did last time I made it successfully. I’ll do that here, or at least I intend to do that here.
No, honestly, I can’t follow a recipe. I mean, I can, but it is sooo difficult! First of all, I never buy unsalted butter, so I always use salted butter and reduce the amount of salt in the recipe a little to adjust. Or not. And I refuse to buy unitaskers (those pesky utensils that only do one thing and just take up valuable drawer or cupboard space 99% of their existence) or ingredients I know I won’t use completely before they get funky, like anchovy paste (which starts out funky, now that I think of it) or ginger root. Sometimes I’ll add a spice or a flavor element not mentioned in a recipe, or screw up the timing, or use a different size pan or halve the quantities or leave something out if I don’t like it or don’t have it… or, frankly, sometimes I just read the darn recipe wrong. This is no surprise; civil procedure is my weak subject at work. I can read a set of court rules 45 times and still not serve a paper correctly….
This began long, long ago in a land far, far away (or not, but it was at least 15 years ago at my parents’ house which is a 15 minute drive from my house) when I lovingly made a batch of chocolate chip cookies for my brother who was due home on leave from the Air Force for the weekend. My brother loved homemade chocolate chip cookie
s dough and, having been away from him for so long I was starting to realize for the first time that I kind of actually liked him, so I thought I’d make him his own batch of cookies. The project started out fine & dandily. I put the yummy-looking scoops of soft dough onto the cookie sheets and after a few minutes they started to smell scrumptious. Impatient baker I am, I turned on the light and peeked into the oven only to freak out – GAH! FAIL! There on the top two oven racks were two whole cookie sheets full of spreading, liquidy chocolate chip caramelly goo! AH! Immediately I grabbed my mom’s trusty red-and-white checkered BH&G cookbook (everyone who cooks or bakes knows that this is my bible) to look over the recipe and realized that I forgot (wait for it)…. only the flour. Yep, the flour. Nothing important like the baking powder or salt or anything. Nope, the flour. Awesome. (Strangely enough, the resulting product was pretty tasty, anyway, eaten out of a bowl with a spoon.)
Naturally, cooking comes much easier to me than baking but I LOVE to bake, and I LOVE to come up with complex flavor combos that turn simple cakes & desserts into sophisticated delicacies. I love the challenge of a multi-step recipe. I have no formal training, no culinary education, and no family restaurateur background. Possibly I inherited my interest in food from both branches of my family tree: my paternal grandmother ran a very casual catering business out of our church kitchen (“Village Hall” where the ham, meatballs & mashed potatoes were legendary) and my maternal great-grandmother had a degree in nutrition, but I have zero authority and this is just a hobby.
I repeat: THIS IS JUST A HOBBY! I hope it turns out to be a fun venture ~ thanks for stopping in!