Getting My Bake On

I am a geek. A full on, card carrying, proud to be a member geek. What do I geek over? Well lots of things actually but most of all: baking. Sweet mother of icing sugar I love baking. I love the process. I love the measuring. I love the tweaking of recipes. I love, love, love the looks on people’s faces when they taste my baking. Ok – so perhaps that is the real reason I love baking. It makes people happy. Who doesn’t want to go through life making people happy?

So I issued an invite to some of my friends to come over and get their bake on. It doesn’t occur to me that people don’t bake. It boggles my mind as I write that. My mom, bless her heart and cotton socks for doing so, baked all the time. I grew up in a house filled with home made cookies, pies, the occasional bread, tarts and the like. It didn’t occur again that not everybody grows up in a house like that. What a gift my mother gave me! Thanks Mommasito! Now I’m passing that gift to my kids who are already baked good connoisseurs who frequently bypass sweets tables if they don’t measure up. That’s not to say they don’t enjoy the odd sugar binge but they know a good square when they taste it.

Now I’m trying to pass the love to my friends who I’m sure have baked before but perhaps not quite with the passion bordering on fanaticism that I approach this age old skill. I’ve got spices galore (in brand new spice racks I might add that make my heart go pitty-pat), three types of flour, three types of salt and dried fruit up the bedunk. I’ve got sugars and sifters and bowls that have taken more beatings than a hockey player in fourth period. I’ve got a hand mixer, food processor and Kitchenaid stand mixer which has probably been my BEST CHRISTMAS PRESENT EVER !!! Thanks to my Mommasito and lovely hubby I can churn out cakes, cookies, breads, icing, candy and squares like a machine.

Will I ever grow tired of baking? Not likely. Even the fickle, non-committal, easily bored, routine bucking Gemini in me, is forever returning to this bliss. I guess it’s more about the pay-off. It’s about giving somebody a small piece of my heart every time they taste what I’ve made. It’s about tuning out stress and being at one with the bowl. My form of meditation and yoga if you will. It gives me positive reinforcement. It gives me a feeling of success. It connects me to women going back to ancient times who’ve fed their families with the nectar of the wheat. Who wouldn’t want to get that feeling? Plus it makes my house smell great 🙂

So tonight, I get to get my bake on with my friends. Tonight I get to share and hopefully inspire. Tonight I get to pass along some of the lessons I’ve learned at the spoon of my Mommasito, through the brilliance of bakers whose books I study and my own creative baker brain who sees a recipe as more of a guideline than an absolute. Tonight we create some happiness and who wouldn’t want to be a part of that?


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