Thursday, May 6, 2010

Anybody getting rid of any bowls?

Earlier today, a friend mentioned she was baking cookies. I said jokingly "what a good Mormon thing to do". If you were to read between the lines, you would have heard "I'm just jealous that you actually have the motivation to bake cookies for no other reason than just to bake them".

I was a dessert deprived child. My mother was a busy, working single mom, and while raising her heaven sent, well-behaved child, she was writing a Master's thesis in her spare time. If dinner was on the table, it wasn't followed up with dessert. Don't get me wrong; I didn't stare longingly at the cookie sheet while the sound of my mother's typewriter clicked in the background. I could always count on my Grandmother to provide me with baked goods, and the occasional $1 from my mom for an ice cream sandwich via the store. Eating dessert sparingly in my youth has molded me into what I am now: a salt fiend. Given my upbringing and lack of glucose enriched foods, I developed a molar-sized salt tooth. I've learned to enjoy dessert more as I've gotten older, but I don't have the unquenchable need to chase every savory dish with something sweet. With that said, I don't bake to bake. I think the last time I made cookies for that reason was back in 2004. Any baked items produced from my kitchen are linked to a cause, such as Teacher Appreciation Week chocolate chip cookie dough cupcakes which I thought were meh, and "the bananas are going bad and I can't stomach wasting food" banana bread. I think my lack of enthusiasm is also connected to the fact that I lack many of the necessary tools for baking, and I don't want to buy those tools because then I'll have more stuff and stuff drives me bonkers. So, I tend to borrow what I don't have from friends and family, which drives them bonkers (I have yet to discuss my wildly, out of control habit of borrowing that which I could easily buy; watch out for that 5-part post). Recently, my no-buy-just-borrow mentality failed me. A few days ago, I was making the cupcakes mentioned above for Emma's teacher. The bowl I was using was just that: a bowl. Not a mixing bowl, just a bowl. It was one of my larger bowls, but it's intended use is not for mixing in. I do own a proper mixing bowl. It's large, made of flexible plastic, and sufficient for my needs. But I own only one. At that moment, it was sitting on Asher's nightstand moonlighting as a throw-up bowl. Gross, I know. Do not fret future eaters of my food: that bowl is now the dedicated throw-up bowl and will be replaced post-haste. I should own two mixing bowls since the baking process usually involves separating wet and dry ingredients, and every time I bake I think "I should own two", but I bake so infrequently that it seems frivolous to own two mixing bowls. Frivolous to own TWO WHOLE mixing bowls? Yet it's not frivolous for me to own fifteen pairs of jeans. My priorities are a bit scewed. Anywho, into my small bowl went butter and sugar. I needed to cream them together, add eggs, vanilla, etc. I was attempting to bake at the wrong time of day: naptime. The walls in our house are paper thin, and Asher is a light-as-a-feather sleeper. I choose to take care of the mixing in the garage so as not to wake him. Our garage is currently full of furniture that I'm in the process of painting. The first available surface that was closest to the outlet was a desk, which had all it's drawers taken out and set on top of. Rather than removing the drawers from the desk's surface, I just shifted them towards the sides, giving me working space in the middle. I set the bowl on top of the desk and started mixing. My hand mixer has two speeds: high and sonic barrier breaking. I began to cream the ingredients, and after adding each egg one at time (placing the shells into a desk drawer, of course) the bowl's contents increased steadily and started flying out, landing all over me, the desk, it's drawers, the water heater, the ironing board, etc. The experience only increased my disdain for baking. And of course I blame the baking itself, not the fact that I only own one mixing bowl. Yet I want my grown children to fondly recall their mother in the kitchen, rolling out pie crust for her homemade apple dumplings, while wearing heels and lipstick. Currently, their memory stands at mom digging through the last two years of their Halloween candy, finding a package of sour gummy worms that aren't completely stiff, throwing it across the room, and asking them to share the package between themselves. Sad, right? But they know no different, and they LOVE when it's a dessert night, meaning they both choked down something they had a hard time eating, which roughly translated means they probably ate something healthy. Sorry kids, you're not entitled to an old Hershy's kiss after you've had pizza for dinner. I once made a goal to bake at least on Sunday nights. I failed on the first attempt. We ended up sharing a package of Runts (I gave all the bananas to Asher cuz they're blech). Maybe a pretty, red Kitchenaid will help motivate me. Does your Kitchenaid motivate you? I fear I would use it only to mix up concoctions involving tomatoes and Doritos


Heather said...

you should come over here every sunday night and i'll give you baking lessons. wish i knew you needed bowls- just gave a way a set of vintage nesting enamel bowls that would have matched your counters.

hit the goodwill, you'll find more mixing bowls that you could possibly use!

H said...

My brother once threw a fit in a military grocery store screaming, "mom, mom, I just want some COOOOOKIIIIEEEES!" She got horrified looks from everyone because those were the days when kids didn't throw fits all the time and you bought them what they wanted. She refused because she baked every Thursday.

I'm still trying to figure out the moral of this story.

H said...

"Plus also" (we're reading a LOT of Junie B. Jones around here) thanks for the link to the cupcakes! I haven't decided if I'm going to make the filling or the frosting. To eat. By the spoonful. Who needs the cupcake, right?

Sara said...

I'd rather have a salt molar than be a sugar addict! Your kids will be healthier, right?

Rachael said...

A kitchen Aid AND a Bosch mixer reside in my house and I use my 12 piece stacking mixing bowl set! Girl...go get some dishes and bake your kids some cookies!
Next time you do this please take a picture of the mess you made in the garage with the cookie dough splattered! Too funny!

Jenny D. said...

I will admit I got a bit defensive when you said that to me because I rarely bake in my free time like that and I definitely don't bake to be a good Mormon. Sheesh!

That morning in my ritual blog surfing (what I usually choose to do in my free time) I spotted a recipe for PB filled chocolate cookies. I HAD to make those cookies pronto! In the midst of making, what turned out to be cookies that require way too much work, is when I talked to you.

I'm just flattered that our brief conversation inspired one of your famous posts!

Gina said...

Dessert is the best part of my day everyday sometimes twice a day. I really should be overweight, but instead I eat any dessert my little heart desires. You know some desserts don't need baking. I have a no-bake Rocky Road cheesecake recipe.