Recently I was talking to a friend who it turns out once upon a time worked with horses. For a short time only. In that time there was a training and learning event of getting the horse to walk up to and then across a stream. It was an interesting story and he and the horse became one.
Not, as funny as it was told, did the guy riding a second horse one fine day. My friend and horse crossed the stream in fine shape. However, the guy and the horse behind him were not one with the creek. That rider ended up in the drink. I am not one wanting to end up in the drink.
But… baking is something I enjoy. You might say it’s in my soul. There are so many things to make to choose from though. As the wonderful holidays are ramping up more and more, as the days get colder, and the windows are closing, baking beckons me to the kitchen. Closed windows are keeping all those wonderful cinnamon-nutmeg-gingerbread smells locked up. Yum.
The baking kitchen is where I have spent the last few days. But. Yes, a sniffy baked “but.” Here’s a look at what happens when you want to bake EVERYTHING in your recipe file.
Cakes and pies come later in the season. They need to be in the lineup as the huge dinners marked with sticky-fingered Xs on the calendar approach. Homemade pies are the best when fresh as a summer breeze. Oh, then there’s candy and cookies. Those are things that can be baked, bagged and frozen in the weeks leading up to the main events. You know without pie filling getting too dehydrated or cakes getting too dry and hard to even cut with a fork. Kitchens that make candy during the holiday season begin to look like a mix between a cluster of new kittens and a mass exodus of the running of the bulls in Pamplona. For that reason, I decided on three easy peasy things. Ha! Best laid plans.
Gathering all things together takes planning. I find making things then halfway through finding I need buttermilk and I don’t have buttermilk makes for a rush to my “substitute it” file. Does anyone really, I mean REALLY buy buttermilk for any other reason than to bake? Come on have you ever tasted it? Moving on because I know a few that really like buttermilk. They are questionable people. Move along Trina.
I don’t need buttermilk for my three things, so I gather up nuts and cinnamon and some other stuff as I listen to music coming from the living room television. Yes, I am one that dances in fuzzy socks in my kitchen as I cook. Then the DJ starts talking about the things he likes during the holidays. His list included things I have not made in more years than my memory can remember. So, I of course change my course. I mean it wasn’t written in stone what I was going to make, was it? Well, not stone, but the eggs were already cracked and separated into the yellow and the white bowls as to make white egg, egg white stuff and yellow egg, egg yolk stuff. The new radio DJ inspired goodies didn’t call for eggs. A dilemma ensued.
It is not like me to just toss good egg stuff out. I have lived through tough times over my times. I thought about keeping on track and making the things I had planned for. I mean I even bought buttermilk for goodness sakes. But the DJ-inspired things sounded so much better. I then took the step to use the eggs by making the bunch of kittens that have mysteriously appeared on my back deck both happy and full. I mixed the white and yellow things back together – uh not as carefully as the chicken built them the first time! Then that horse changing stream thingy happened.
Carrying a paper bowl to the back door I opened it to take the yummy slimy goodness out surprising the kittens with a treat. I still had on my fuzzy dancing socks. My feet found it was a perfect time to catch on the threshold and trip me sending previously separated and then remarried eggs out into the atmosphere. I did not fall, thank you Lord.
But I remember seeing three still intact egg yolks flying through the air. Looking like big yellow eyes I swear they winked at me as they splatted on the boards of the deck. The whites followed flinging a line of slime looking like a laughing rainbow. Never change directions in the middle of your stream. AARRGGHH.
Trina Machacek lives in Eureka. Find her books online wherever you buy books or email her at email@example.com buy a signed copy.