Well, it’s happened again. I’m really not sure if I’ll ever learn the lesson. I’ve come to the painful conclusion that there is something inherently wrong with me that I am absolutely INCAPABLE of baking a batch of cookies. Edible cookies, that is. I used to be a sort-of good baker. Admittedly, my creations were often not pretty to look. I never was deluded into thinking I could pass myself off as a baked goods artiste. But, the treats I baked always tasted pretty darn good. I think I probably just got lazy over the years. But, I mean, seriously, why the heck can’t I bake a decent batch of cookies anymore? I’m not exaggerating. Just ask my family. When I tell them I’m baking, there is an audible groan. One day, after an unsuccessful attempt, which resulted in a pan of lumpy black charcoals, I set the smoking pan outside on the deck. When my husband came home from work, he saw the pan outside and casually said, “Were you baking today?”
Yes, something has changed. I don’t know what it is, but it has become IMPOSSIBLE for me to successfully bake a batch of cookies. I mean cookies that are ooey-gooey good. The kind that people want to eat. At best, mine aren’t burned, technically, but definitely crispy. That’s become my code word. “They are NOT burned. They’re crispy.” Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. But, I would love to be able to confidently bake a batch of cookies that doesn’t require gallons of milk to choke them down. I’m not even talking about the kind of baking that involves flour and sugar and eggs and whatever else cookies are made of. I’m talking about the pre-made Pillsbury cookie dough you buy at the store. It’s already pre-cut into cookie shapes! All I have to do is transfer them from the packaging to a baking pan, stick it in the oven and…here where it gets tricky…REMOVE them from said oven after about 10 minutes. The “removal part” I’ve learned, is key to the whole cookie-baking process.
I know what you’re thinking. And, YES I DO set a timer. And, I’ve even figured out that I shouldn’t stray too far from the oven during that ever-important ten minute period, so as not to miss the buzzing alert. And, yet, every single time, I find myself sniffing the air, thinking “Mmmm….something smells good.” Which is probably the time I should head over to the oven and check on the cookies. But, I don’t because, in the matter of several minutes after depositing the pan into the oven, I’ve somehow forgotten that cookies are baking. Instead, I continue whatever I’m doing until I finally do remember. And then it’s always “OH SHI******….” Every. Single. Time.
I remember once, on my way to pick my daughter up from school, I texted her saying I had made Snickerdoodles – those yummy cinnamon cookies. Her response: “Really? That sounds like something someone else’s mom would do.” I got lucky that day – no black smoke billowing from the kitchen. Mary Kate was so proud of me. That was a good day…