Saturday, December 13, 2008

I love to bake

When Brandon and I married, I couldn't cook worth a flip. I mean, I could make tacos (because it's really hard to screw up ground beef), but I was scared of preparing any other sort of meat. Thankfully, my husband was (and is) a wonderful cook. He can cook anything and everything he puts his mind too. He has a passion for cooking......

Which can only be matched by my passion for baking. You see, I may not have been able to cook (I can now, btw), but I could definitely bake. Oh, how I could bake.

I absolutely love the scents that fill the air as the heat from the oven brings out the rich aroma of cinnamon rolls (baked entirely from scratch). The smell of yeast bread filling the air, reminding me of Sunday dinners prepared by my mom. And cookies... chocolate chip cookies... warm and gooey....

There's something thrilling about baking. In fact, for me, the most difficult part about baking is when I have to wait for something to cool. I want to dive into it when it's hot and moist, when steam is still clouding the air above my goodies.

Now, I admit, I don't make everything from scratch. The two main things I rarely make from scratch are brownies (I always keep a box of Betty Crocker's fudgy brownie mix on hand) and crescent rolls. It's not because I can't make it from scratch, it's because, when I get a craving for these things, I don't WANT to take the time to make it from scratch (and plus, I have found that my own recipes are just as good as Betty Crocker's mix, so... mm).

Sometimes, I turn crescent rolls into kolaches by stuffing them with cheese and smoked ham before I roll them up. Or, you can make them into a tasty treat by slathering them with butter and sprinkling on cinnamon and sugar (before rolling them up) and then serving them with cream cheese icing.

Now and then, someone asks me how I get my brownies and cookies to be so moist. It's simple. I never bake them as long as recommended. They should still be a tad gooey, mainly because they are still baking, even when you remove them from the oven. This is especially important for those of you who, like me, don't switch your cookies over to a cooling rack (I don't even own one!). The pan is still holding a lot of heat and will continue to bake the cookies for a bit longer.

Also, another tip- sometimes, following the recipe doesn't produce the right result. For example, my cookies always flattened out and didn't look right AT ALL. So I had an idea... I added more flour. Now my cookies are thick and puffy, not flat and sunken, sad looking things. What some recipes don't tell you is that you are suppose to pack in the flour (much like you would pack down brown sugar). So if your first batch doesn't look or taste like you think it should, experiment with the rest of the batter/dough to see what you can produce.

Speaking of.. I'm off to make some cookies. Want one?


Nikowa said...

Mmmm those cinnamon rolls look great! Post the recipe :)

Sylvia & Homero said...

Yes, please do post the recipe for your cinnamon rolls. I would love to try it! =)