Cooking

If you bake it, you’ll have to bake more

In this corner:  with a domestic empire, perfect hair and a questionable insider trading record … Martha Stewart

In this corner:  with color coordinated oven mitts,  perfect shoes and the guarantee to burn beyond recognition at least one meal a week … Carried Away

The challenge: Pumpkin pie

Winner, by unanimous and extremely partial decision – Carried Away!

*end dream sequence*

No, seriously, I did bake a pumpkin pie; actual photo above.  However, I was not prepared for the aftermath of this particular baked goods odyssey.

I followed my mother’s recipe word for word.  Remembering that “tsp” is not the same as “tblsp,” I mixed and stirred and rolled and poured.  Oliver and I sat, staring into the oven for the entire 50 minutes.  Then voila!  There it was.

It should be known that personally, I hate pumpkin pie.  My favorite pumpkin activity is carving it  – first only to throwing it away.  But, the loves in my life love the pumpkin so therefore I bake. O, but if I’d only known what I was getting into…

If you bake it, you’ll have to bake more!

Early reports from the kitchen table revealed that half the pie was gone in less than 12 hours of completion, with the remainder not expected to make it through the night.  Clearly I have set a precedents that I in no way intend to uphold.  I knew my success would come back to haunt me.

Next time I feel domestic, I am taking the dive and giving Marie Callender’s the TKO!

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The Lasagna

Sunday date night is finally here!  Yeah – dinner and a movie.  Just as I was about to make my specialty, reservations, my most recent “+1” candidate called and suggested that we make dinner instead.  I’m sorry, do what?

Let it be known that I can’t cook, to the degree that I can single-handedly ruin Mac N’Cheese in a box.  I have accepted this, so has anyone with taste buds.

Being the good sport I am, I reluctantly suppressed my hostility toward Calphalon and slathered on a smile.  “Sure,” I responded, “What do you want me to make?”

“Lasagna,” he eagerly exclaimed.  Death sentence.  Now, I could have chopped and diced my way to a salad,  whipped up a mean batch of PB&J, even boiled water to Top Ramen perfection, but lasagna?!

Great, now I had to Google up something resembling a recipe.  Shocking, I have absolutely none of the ingredients listed.  Off to the grocery store I schlep.

$30 and a bag full of exceptionally anti-South Beach diet foods later, it was time to get started.  Luckily for me I was able to find ‘cheat’ versions of most everything I needed.  Precooked, refrigerated noodles…check!  Canned tomatoes…check!  Tub of lumpy white cheese…check!

I won’t lie to you; I own one round cake pan. I have no idea what size it is and despite what the scribbled instructions said, it won by default.  Taken aback by my layering technique I channeled Rachel Ray as I shouted out, “EVOO.”   This is really happening, I’m going to use the oven….I’m cooking!

Oliver and I patiently sat with bated breath in front of the oven taking in every minute of this magical moment, sipping wine, starring at our reflections in the glass window. Then it was time, I opened the oven door ….. Then shut it.

Where was my beautiful creation?  My masterful mound of layered goodness?  UGH!

There before me was an oozing pile of charcoal.  “+1” emerges from the billowing smoke and delivers his vigilant observation, “It isn’t supposed to look like that!”

The night ended much how I had wanted it to begin. I made my specialty, reservations.