Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Why Do I Do It?

It's a bit of a running joke between my husband and me, but it's not always a funny joke. He likes to tease me about how I follow a recipe.

I'm sorry. That's misleading. He teases me about how I don't follow a recipe.

It's true. I like to think that I follow recipes exactly, but I've noticed lately that I simply don't. It's not just tried and true favorites that I feel comfortable enough to monkey around with. No, it's brand new recipes that I find on the internet that show gorgeous pictures with glowing comments. The way the directions are written is obviously good enough for everybody else.

So why do I have to stray from the safety of the proven? Sure, sometimes it's a really tasty creation, but if I'm honest with myself, just as often it's a total flop, a waste of time and ingredients.

I did it again tonight. Tomorrow is the last story time at our library with Miss Marilyn, the lovely librarian we have come to know through many, many library programs over the last several years. I wanted to make a decorated giant cookie (or two) for a farewell. I did a quick online search and came up with a confetti sugar cookie recipe that really had my mouth watering. I printed it off, clipped it to the hood of my stove, and got work.

Before I even preheated the oven, I'd already begun making changes in my mind. First, I decided to double the recipe. I have some lemons to use, so in went some lemon juice and zest. Because I'd added acid in the form of lemon juice, I decided it would help the baking soda do it's lifting job, so I used less baking powder. Instead of the 4 teaspoons of vanilla, I added just one squirt. As I often do, I substituted whole wheat flour for some of the all-purpose. I didn't have enough white chocolate chips, so I just emptied the bag into the dough without even measuring. And finally, I didn't have rainbow sprinkles. I did have purple sprinkles, but I had only about half of what the recipe specified.

So how did they turn out?

Well, I'm not going to cut into them and make them look rat-chewed. I'm assuming they'll taste fine since the dough was yummy, and they look okay (if not actually rainbow-confetti-like). All that's left to do is decorate with a bit of frosting and more sprinkles. . . which I don't have, so maybe I'll need to use some colored sugar instead. 

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