In some cruel, cruel parallel universe where I were forced to choose between cookies and cakes, cake would never win, even if topped with the most perfect plop of pink butter cream frosting (because pink tastes better, oh yes, it does) and brightly-colored confetti sprinkles. I don’t mean to diss on cake. I’ve had some good cakey creations in my time here, but even the most spectacular rum-doused pineapple upside down cake or flourless chocolate creation feels at times an uphill battle with the fact that cake, deep down inside, wishes to remain dry. Cookies, on the other hand, desire balance – crisp exteriors, supple interiors, and each and every one of their ingredients gets to make a full-on appearance in the final flavor. As an added bonus, they keep for a week.
July, 2006 Archive
I’ve heard so many people say that they don’t understand the purpose of wedding registries. “Can’t we just have the cha-ching?” they ask, “Who needs all that crap?”
And I’m here to say, “I do.” Yes, to the Kitchen Aid. Yes to the carved oak salad bowl set. Yes to the entire Cuisinart family from the Griddler and Food Processor to the Ice Cream Maker and Hand Blender. Yes, I find satisfaction in a well-outfitted kitchen and I am not ashamed to admit it.
I think that the basic instinct that gets us in the kitchen “after all those messy sustenance issues have been attended to” is a deep-seated desire to make something taste a little better than the way we’ve come to accept it. It’s why there are ten thousand crab cake recipes and a line of followers behind each, and it’s why everyone has an idea carved into their base philosophy of the way corn bread is supposed to taste (and most of it fails to please because it’s not as savory/rich, sweet/cakey or textural/salty as they believe pone was intended to be). I’d also argue that this is why few bother to make their own ketchup, as Heinz figured out a long time ago what most of us expect of it and why reinvent the wheel?
I blame the ubiquitous sandwich shop offering for vegetarians, “roasted fall vegetable wrap, coated with gobs of salad oil and not a droplet of originality” (fine, I’ve embellished that last part), for the fact that until two years ago I ate not a lick of eggplant. That, and eggplant parmesan, but my rant about melted cheese-coated things – and my husband’s baffled expression when he learned of this blasphemy – for another time.