Saturday, December 19, 2009

The Science of Baking

Baking at 6000 ft. is hard, y'all. It involves science and math, and other things that make my head hurt.

I've Googled, I've read. I've tried to understand why water boils faster up here, and why the first batch of Toll House cookies I made came out like hockey pucks. I read something about the principles of high altitude baking, and how to modify recipes. But I don't understand it. And please don't try to explain it to me. I promise, I still won't get it.

Fortunately, things like cake mixes and brownie mixes and the Toll House cookie recipe have special high altitude instructions. For cakes and brownies, it involves adding dry flour to the mixes, and also adding more water. What does this have to do with high altitude? I haven't a clue. But it works.

You know what doesn't work? Using store-bought, refrigerated cookie dough to make your Christmas cookies. Because after 7 minutes at 350 degrees? They look like this:

Can you tell which ones are the trees, which are the stars and which are the gingerbread men? Yeah, me either. But I swear, they started out in those shapes. Frisbee, anyone?

Can you say frustrating? I suppose I could look up a recipe for high altitude sugar cookie dough and make it from scratch, but honestly, that's just way too much work for me.

Luckily for me, guess what they sell at the grocery store?

Plain, undecorated Christmas cookies!

Besides, this is all she really wants to do anyway. I know, good luck getting her to go to sleep tonight, right?

Whatever means we used to get here, it's all good. What else do kids really want, but to make a huge mess with frosting and sprinkles for mom to clean up?

(And try not to be too jealous of my lovely matching plates, ok?)

Thursday, December 10, 2009

I'll Take "People No One In The Real World Knows About" for $800, Alex

I'm flabbergasted. Heather Armstrong, a.k.a. Dooce, was just the answer to a freaking question on Jeopardy. Jeopardy!

The category was "Urban Dictionary", and thanks to the DVR, I can tell you what the clue was word for word:

"This term was coined by blogger Heather Armstrong, meaning to lose your job because of your blog."

The answer? (Question?) You've been "Dooced."

The funniest part? None of the contestants had any clue what the answer was. But I did! And I don't even read her blog.