Just a little analogy, SAT style.
In honor of getting our electricity back on, I would like to talk about baking.
It’s no secret I’m not the best dessert baker. I can make cookies easy enough, and anything out of a box is, well, a piece of cake. But what happened to these nice, simple baking recipes? Now everything is getting so complicated with the bazillion ingredients, the instructions a mile long, and oh my gosh the GADGETS!
It also doesn’t help I have ADD in the kitchen [and probably in life too]. I don’t always measure ingredients exactly, sometimes I skip around a recipe and forget an element or two [like sugar– that particular muffin recipe was too much for me] or I accidentally do a few steps in reverse, and in baking that’s usually a big deal. I like to tell myself that I’m “adding my own twist to it”, but really I just messed it up.
Anyway, cupcakes fall into the “dessert baking” category and are therefore often left to a box of funfetti cake and tub of rainbow chip frosting. Never fails. Sprinkles Cupcakes also does the trick.
What I am good at baking is bread. Loaves of “easy” bread, cinnamon swirl bread, honey-spiced bread, pizza, flatbread, rolls. I can do that. I find it less complicated, and while it’s time consuming- I don’t think it’s as mentally exhausting as traditional baking. I mean, let’s be real, it took me almost a constant hour and a half on my feet to make those fig tarts the other week. That’s ridiculous. With bread you whip up the dough in about 10 minutes, go on your merry way for an hour or so while it rises, try not to forget about it, come back, bake it. Easy peasy. Bread is a loner. It can fend for itself. Baked goods are too needy. I don’t like needy.
Muffins are another baking by-product I happen to be good at, and typically opt for over cupcakes. I’m not talking about the one’s at your local coffee shop that pack in 300+ calories and give you a whopping insulin spike. I mean the fluffy, slightly sweet, usually fruity type that aren’t the size of a small child’s head. No icing required, no candy thermometer, no pre-baking the crust. You just mix up a batter, spoon into muffin pans, bake, devour.
The options are infinite. You want a sweet one? Throw a little crumble on top. Have a ton of peaches that your mom bought from the Amish dirt cheap? Slice-em, dice-em and give the spoon a good swirl.
Before we lost electricity for 3 days, I happened to be in a situation that combined both scenarios so I went to my trusty muffin recipe. I’ve made them enough times to know the recommended amount of sugar is just right, to only bake them for 20 minutes, and to eat them while they’re piping hot. Preferably with Breyer’s vanilla ice cream. The recipe calls for frozen but I use fresh peaches, and any berry you have on hand [fresh or frozen] could be substituted. I’ve also made a batch where I skipped the streusel topping and added 1/4 – 1/2 cup extra peaches. See!? Muffins are so forgiving.
Peach-Pecan Muffins, from Southern Living Magazine