Dear Baking: Why Do You Hate Me?

I am a God-awful baker.  No, really – I am.  I try and try, but my baking usually turns out sub-par at best.  I envy you out there that can bake.  (And, no – making cookies doesn’t count. Any idiot can do that.  I’m talking pie crusts, breads, biscuits, rolls, etc.)

I had a dinner party over the weekend and I had to make my rolls twice, my tart crust twice, and a record six times trying  to make caramel sauce.  For real. Oh, and three out of four of my ovens went out, as well as the refrigerator.  For real.

My tart crust was too thin, so the filling leaked out and scorched the sides and under the tart itself, so it didn’t want to come out of the pan.  Yes, it still tasted good, but it looked like shit.  My rolls didn’t rise properly, so they were like little itty-bitty tiny rolls, although they did taste good inside.  And, I don’t know what was up with the caramel sauce.  I just kept burning it over and over.  Why do I do this to myself?

Because I love it!  (Also, strangely, my pretzel bites turned out fine. Go figure.)

Here was my Dinner Party Menu – an ode to Gourmet magazine as a kind of good-bye to the old gal.  Almost everything was from the October 2009 issue:


Country Ham & Cheddar Pretzel Bites with Jalapeño Mustard Sauce
Roasted Red & Golden Beet Salad with Goat Cheese  & Orange Vinaigrette
Roasted Black BBQ Pork Chops with Korean Black BBQ Dipping Sauce
Braised Bacon Carolina Rice
Vermouth & Butter Braised Thumbelina Carrots
Scotch Pie with Caramel Sauce & Blackened Pineapple Salsa