I started off this morning knowing that I had a big day in the kitchen: I wanted to try a new recipe for lunch, we needed bringing dessert to our neighbour’s dinner tonight, and I needed to make a dozen banana muffins for tomorrow’s bake sale.
I also had to go to the store to begin the day.
Before starting any baking we took a 10am break and met our friends at the park, as one of us was already tired of being in the house. It’s a good thing we went out because I had forgotten to buy flour (how did I plan to bake without flour?) and the grocery was a short walk from the park and not far out of our way back home.
Feeling like the domestic goddess that I am when the real one is off-duty, I was on top of the world. Little Red napped while I tried out our new treat for lunch which came out perfectly and I was proud. I had the eggs and the butter out in preparation for the flourless chocolate cake, I was cleaning up after myself, and Little Red awoke just as I took the taco cheese swirls out of the oven and my husband walked in the door.
I could not have timed everything more perfectly.
While we snacked on the taco swirls we set to work on dessert. It’s been years since we’ve made it because it’s so rich, but we thought with six adults at dinner we could share it without indulging too much. I was already salivating in anticipation.
Because of our emergency trip to the park the eggs had not quite reached room temperature, and because my husband’s lunch break is only so long, he didn’t have time to wait.
Oops! We curdled the eggs.
The fancy butter and special chocolate, the baker’s sugar, and six eggs were all ruined. (As a major milestone for me, it was hours before I tallied up how much money we wasted; I was truly sad at the beginning just that we wouldn’t have the flourless chocolate cake for dessert.)
My husband was even more despondant than I, but what could we do?
We did what any rational couple with two minutes left of lunch did… we got over it, sorted the dry cleaning and got into the car.
“I’ll make Carol’s scones,” I said. “They aren’t chocolate, but they’re good.”
And I did. It was my first time making her scones and they came out very nicely, very fluffy and yummy, but they paled in comparison to the grand dessert I had told our neighbours we’d bring. I packed them into an airtight container for tomorrow’s breakfast –scones really are more breakfasty than desserty to me anyway– and opened the cupboard door.
Without even reading much more than the word “chocolate” I selected a box cake. Certainly nothing exotic or new, certainly nothing special, but at least it was chocolate. Unfortunately, once the cake was in the oven I realized that we had no icing sugar. I wasn’t excited about the prospect of going to the grocer for a third time in one day, especially as I’d have to wait for the cake to come out of the oven before I did so. Little Red was just tired of the whole kitchen idea, by this point. I called my next door neighbour who commiserated with me but had borrowed our sugar the last time she needed it and had not yet replaced her supply. I called my neighbour who was hosting the soiree, and when she got off work and returned my call, brought me a bag of sugar.
At least now everyone who thought they’d be regailed with some five star dessert knows the truth: eat more chicken, I’m not the pastry chef they think I am.
As for the muffins? Well, I promised Little Red I wouldn’t do them until after he went to bed, or at least until after his Dad came home. I can totally make them and get a good night’s sleep and be at the sale at six am tomorrow to set up — can’t I?
Well, anyway, I need to open more windows, our entire apartment is 350 degrees.