Friday, December 14, 2007

Now 10% More Feminine!

So yesterday was my second annual foray into the strange and exciting world of Bakeapalooza--LoveyH style. Contrary to how it sounds, no herbs were involved. We were baking. Not baked.

(And for the love of the sweet eight pound, six ounce newborn baby Jesus, I still can't figure out why not.)

There were ten of us altogether--four women and six children.

Conditions were right for makin' blog.

And not just because all four of us are bloggers (Lovey, Bribee, Emma, and myself), but because I, for one, am not a natural-born baker. I suck at it. My motto? "They sell cookies down at Safeway, you know."

Apparently, this makes me an outcast among women. There's an unwritten code that I understand to mean 'feeding your child store-bought baked goods is as good as serving up Magnetix with a side of iron shavings, you horrible, horrible toad.' Or something to that effect.

Even my mom used to tell me that I'd never find a man to love me if I didn't learn the art of culinary seduction. While every daughter, I'm sure, appreciates her mother's attempts at utilizing archaic forms of male subjugation on the female persuasion by relegating them to the archetypically dependent and perpetually knocked up hausfrau, I was decidedly less enamored with the idea. I was going to find a man who loved me for my mind, damn it! And if all else failed... Well, I have a nice rack.

And I ain't talkin' the kind you cool cookies on.

High five, up top!

But as much as I despised my mom's old skool way of thinking, even I had to admit she was sorta right. The old adage about the way to a man's heart being through his stomach isn't exactly hogwash. My rack sparkling personality may have attracted my husband to me initially, but it wasn't until he'd tasted my prime rib that I got the sense he wanted me to have his babies. (Which makes for an awkward second date, let me tell you.)

There's a difference, however, between cooking and baking. Cooking I can do. Marinating, basting, grilling, seasoning--that's not a problem.

Baking? That's a problem.

I don't know. Maybe it's because meat and potatoes are more forgiving than delicate, flaky pastries. Baking seems like such a feminine thing, which makes me feel in some small way as though I'm less of a woman for not excelling at it. Especially given that my husband loves, loves, loves baked goods. (He now wants the Gingerbread Girl to have his babies. I'm crushed.)

Regardless, I do feel a little better since yesterday. I only managed to burn one pot holder (sorry, Lovey!), and one batch of oatmeal butterscotch cookies. Plus, my peanut butter honey brownies didn't turn out half bad. So, I guess the moral of the story is...

Next year, me and my rack are staying home.


Kimberly said...

My first batch of cookies ever? Left the flour out. Scraped the runny stuff off the pan, added flour, baked some more. They looked like panckaes. Second batch? I broiled instead of baked. Oh deary-dear. Now? I am the queen of cookies. Oh yeah, baby. I decided to be the mom that all the other kids would want to have. It only took five years.

I should've just bought a better bra and been happy with that. =P

Jill said...

I completely know the key to my husband's every night, dinner on the table and a clean house. Am I capable of fulfilling his needs? HELL NO!!!

He comes from a family of baking women-so he gets his fix when we go to visit them.

Rima said...

I can totally relate.

To this day, my Lithuanian grandmother finds it necessary to tell the P-Dog, "I so sorry she no bake! We try to teach, but she no want" (shrugs shoulders and throws arms up in the air).

Flip Flop Momma said...

I would rather bake...but I would rather someone else clean up the mess..

I had no rack when I met my hubby, my rack didnt devolpe till after I birthed a kid or three;)

how do u know Jesus was 8 pounds?..damn ur good;)

missburrows said...

Ooooh, I'm jealous.

I'm half tempted to drive around town sniffing for cookies and looking for broken eggs in people's driveways.

Sugarplum's Mom said...

I'm just the opposite.. baking I'm reasonably good at... cooking, not as much. Don't get me wrong, I can make edible food, but when it comes to techniques and creativity with spices I am at a total loss.

Natalie said...

Well, I've got part of the baking thing down, but cooking? Eh, not so much. My mom is a very bland cook, and so anything I've learned, I've learned it along the way.

From Here to There

holly said...

i toooo have the 'why should i make something i can buy in half the time' issues. but then there's weight watchers. and yes, i bought the danged books. and my cooking skillz would be enough to have cami take her lovely award away from me. nonetheless, i think no matter how hard you are trying to lose weight, brownies were never meant to be made with yoghurt. i'm just sayin'.
oh man i want brownies now. and i want some danged butterscotch anythings! send them! burnt or no!

you totally crack me up.

Mike said...

Personally, I think you should get baked for Bakeapalooza. It would make for an EVEN MORE fabulous blog post.

Or is that too damn-dirty-hippie for you?

Avery Gray said...

Kimberly--yeah, a new bra can make anyone popular. ;o)

Jill--my husband loves baked goods too much to get his fix from family visits. Good thing he works close to a Krispy Kreme.

Rima--your Lithuanian grandmother rocks! Apologizing for your shortcomings that way, reminds me of my mom. We disappoint them so.

Flip Flop--don't matter how you come by it. The point is, you come by it. And a nice rack's a nice rack. Oh, and I know the birth weight of sweet baby Jesus because Ricky Bobby told me.

Miss Burrows--you could do that, but it would probably just take you to the back door of Safeway's bakery department. While you're there, you should pick up some cookies. They're not too bad.

Sugarplum--thank God I wasn't cursed with that, too! ;o)

Natalie--Just add garlic to everything, and you're halfway there!

Holly--ugh! No Pudge Brownies? I have had a box of that for almost 3 years now. Every once in awhile I wonder what they'd taste like, but I've never been tempted enough to actually open the box and whip up a batch. (E-mail me your address and I'll send you some butterscotch deliciousness.)

Mike--Too damn-dirty-hippie for me? No. Too high school? Maybe. Too fun? And how!

Mya said...

Baking rocks!

Unfortunately, that's what my cakes are like. But I try.

Mya x

Lizzi said...

Right there with ya, friend o'mine! Hey, anybody can make cookies (well, not me, but anybody else), but it takes true talent to make a prime rib!

One word for you - CATERER!

Doozie said...

I believe you should continue to attend this annual event but take a bottle of wine next time. It might work in reverse and actually render you a better baker? I'm good at baking which makes absolutely no sense because I'm pretty much an idiot

Melinda Zook said...

Avery, you are too funny. I know my hubby is a big fan of food, especially baked goods. So I have brushed up on those skills over the years, because really, I don't have much of a rack (the non-cooling kind).

I can't say I can cook all that much. I can follow a recipe by my god, don't let me try something ad hoc, it usually turns into a Frankenstein meal.

Dan Leone said...

I know I am over-thinking this, Avery, but I think it is more masculine to be able to bake cookies.

I actually LOVE to bake because it is such a LEFT-BRAINED activity. In order to make a cake or cookies, you really need to be able to follow directions and add ingredients methodically and precisely. For a guy, this is entirely foolproof. It is Chemistry 101.

BUT, cooking on the other hand, is much more "feminine" as it is very creative. "Cooking a prime rib" is such an individually creative task that I am afraid to touch it!

OK, it is 1AM and I am not sure I am making sense, but whatever.

Have fun out there!

Cafe Leone

Jo Beaufoix said...

I cannot bake.
I once made beautiful mince pies.
Just once.
Luckily pastry gives Mr B indigestion.
We were made for each other.

Emma Sometimes said...

Who says you are an outcast? I must be there with you because you assume I can bake too. I would make Martha Stewart CRY!!

I wrote about Bakeapalooza. You would like it. It may or may not be completely embellished.

Emma Sometimes said...

PS. I always heard that the quickest way to a man's heart was with a sharp knife through his chest???

loveyh said...

You just THINK you won't be here next year. We don't keep you around for thinkin', Miss Gray, we keeps you for your rack.

The one you CAN cool cookies on.

meleah rebeccah said...

Oh. Maybe thats why I have been painfully single for over a YEAR.

I am lacking in any sort of baking or cooking skills.

Joeprah said...

Where are the pictures....come on now! Sigh!