Dispensing Happiness

A good cook is like a sorceress who dispenses happiness.-Elsa Schiapirelli

That's me, the magical good cook.

Borrowing from my friend Dexygus, I've created my own food blog.

Read of my exploits in the kitchen! Salivate over the descriptions of fabulous desserts and savory meals I've concocted!

No, seriously...go ahead. It'll make my day.

Thursday, April 28, 2005

Break it down


I don't know about you, but I'm constantly bombarded with 'join our cooking/recipe' magazine/club/group' mail.

Cooking Light, Southern Living, Cook's Illustrated...you name, I get mail from all of them.

I try to be strong, but I'm only one woman! A woman who must cook, who must bake.

I finally broke down and subscribed to Martha Stewart Living a few months ago; I now have my very first issue, and I think I'm going to like it.

But months and months ago (maybe longer?), I was getting 'sample' cards from the Easy to Bake, Easy to Make company.

I liked the three cards I got, but wasn't sure I wanted to commit to something like this. Eventually, I gave in.

About once a month, I get three packs of cards in the mail (I also got a nifty storage case). There are...oh, maybe two dozen categories, and all are color-coded and numbered. I sort, I file.

Now, Matt and I come from very different backgrounds...one thing that came up early in our relationship was our cooking and eating styles.

To put it simply, I'm what you would call a 'home-style' cook, and Matt? Well, he's a food snob. Sweet man, but he was pretty rigid about what was, and was not, acceptable as food.

We've both grown since then (six years and counting!): while I still love mashed potatoes and Grammy's drop fudge, I lean considerably more towards the gourmet side these days. And Matt's a bit more accepting of simple, homey, dishes.
Hey, that's what marriage is all about. Give and take.

But even I have to stop and say 'you gotta be kidding!' when I see some of the recipes on these cards. I understand they're aimed at the busy cook, but when a recipe consists almost entirely of 'package of' 'can of' 'box of', I actually find myself saying 'that's not cooking'.

Fortunately, not all the recipes are made up of pre-packaged foods (maybe 10-15%). I'd stop getting them if I was expected to live off cream of mushroom soup and ranch dressing mix!

Still, I've made good use of the cards, mostly in the breads and rolls, coffee cakes, and biscuit sections.
I find a lot of recipes for Matt; things I can whip up for him on a Sunday night, that he can have for breakfast all week.

The latest: White Chocolate Rolls

Oy. I, once again, didn't really read the entire recipe before I began. It's a good thing I started before seven...because it was almost eleven when they were done!

Ten minutes for the yeast to bloom, then well over an hour for the first rising. Another...45+ minutes to rise the second time. Then they took longer then the suggested baking time of 12-16 minutes.

But in the end? A nice roll. The dough is just a little bit sweet, and hey...white chocolate! And he can pass it off as breakfast.

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