About a year and a half ago, we bought a new oven. And for a year and a half until two days ago, the oven sat in our kitchen with nothing to do but hold dish towels. So last week, I thought I better use the oven for something other than storage before it keels over and dies. Why not bake with The Hooligan, then?
We were supposed to bake Sunday. But then The Hooligan couldn’t decide whether she wanted to bake cookies (she doesn’t particularly like them but does like the idea of dunking them in milk, which I support all the way) or a cake. When she finally decided on a cake, she added that she wanted a rainbow cake with green icing on the side. Now, my baking ability only goes up to simple-minded recipes, nothing rainbow. Forget about making icing. So we ended Sunday with me issuing a migraine-induced ultimatum: bake something brown in color (because aren’t all baked things brown?) or not bake at all. The Hooligan chose not at all.
Monday, the migraine was gone but so was The Hooligan’s attention span. She saw me putting fertilizer at the base of one of our trees. So then she proceeded to fortify the rest of our plants – and the cement path – with generous doses of fertilizer for the rest of the afternoon.
Tuesday, we baked. I didn’t give The Hooligan a choice of what to bake, otherwise we’d bake in 2012. Plucked a recipe by Roshan Samtani for Yummy magazine – Oatmeal cookies with dried mangoes and cashew nuts (I deleted the nuts. Picky eaters, we are). Chose cookies because I was after the health aspect – I was counting on The Hooligan dunking our creations in lots of milk.
Putting the ingredients together was easy enough. We got flour on most of the furniture and in the T-Rex’s hair but everything else worked. The Hooligan was a worthy assistant. She put herself in charge of measuring all the ingredients (sort of) while wearing the flour sifter on her head as a hat.
I made the mistake, though, of placing the cookie sheet on the second lowest slot (is that what you call it?) of the oven, thus turning the bottoms of the cookies black. The second batch turned out better – all I could hope for at that point was to not burn the damn things.
All our effort was to no avail, however. The Hooligan decided to dunk her cookies in water instead of milk, which, obviously, didn’t work. So she ate half a dripping cookie, no milk; and I ate 10 cookies (spread out over an hour)