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I think I'm mad at Martha.

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Eclecticisms: I think I'm mad at Martha.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

I think I'm mad at Martha.

So, remember a couple of blogs back where I said that you should always read a recipe in it's entirety before starting? I didn't follow my own advice and started a batch of cookies at 9 PM that took a minimum of 2.5 hours of chilling time. "2.5 hours!", you say? "You must have skipped the baking and went to bed!", you say? Wrong. If I was in bed, how would I be blogging right now? Pft. Silly.

Instead of getting much needed rest, I decided make MORE cookies while the dough was chilling. I'll post another blog about how the shortbread ones turned out (taste good, look pretty crappy). There was a lot of dry dough involved which got pretty frustrating..

Now... what to make while I wait. I got very excited when I remembered I'd wanted to try making sunflower seed butter cookies (it tastes just like peanut butter!) but then realized... it is also a refrigerated cookie recipe. Damn. Then I remembered I had two fully zested (unzested? Cooks... help me out here!) lemons that I had been afraid would go to waste. Problem solved. I would make something with lemon juice.

Anyways, on to bigger and better things. Lemon bars! Not the same kind I made last week; This time I used a Betty Crocker recipe from her Cooky Book (let me know if you want the recipe... I'd type it out but it's midnight!). These bars don't have any cheese. Just flour, confectioners sugar and butter for the "crust", and egg, sugar and vanilla for the top.

(Sorry the pics are crappy. My camera isn't the best and I was too tired to clean them up before posting!)

I got VERY excited when I remembered that I had a vintage sifter. The flour was pre-sifted but I sifted it anyways!

Baked the crust for 20 minutes at 350....BUT, remembering my dilemna last week, I made sure to grease the pan and not press the crust down too hard.

After 20 minutes, I added the topping and baked another 25...

But wait. What is this? Raw top? Aghhhh! (Ok, not raw... but defnitely too gooey.)

You may be thinking to yourself, that I tossed them. Well, you may be wrong, because I decided to break the rule given to me by several cooks in my life. The rule to end all rules. After it had cooled a bit, I put it back in the oven. (Yeah,I know.. *gasp*! I'm such a rebel.)

Let me pause for a moment and say that I think I'm probably more upset at Betty Crocker, for her insistence to NOT over bake these bars. I baked to the time and color specified, and look where that got me! Now, where was I?

Oh yes, breaking the rules. I baked the lemon bars for another 8 minutes or so, starting at 300 and increasing back to 350 about half way through. the result? Delicious bars... still a bit messy and sticky, but fully cooked. I'm planning to bring a few to work tomorrow, and I'm REALLY hoping they don't fall apart on the train!

Voila. Lemon bars!

(Don't they look a little like cornbread?)

A few things I am learning/remembering.

1) If you want to be ballsy, go ahead and throw that bad boy back in the oven. Just ask yourself, "How much worse can this get?"
2) Thinking it is ruined doens't mean it's ruined. Don't stop... keep baking until all hope is lost. (Even the "back in the oven" has failed you.)
3) If it looks great, it won't necessarily taste great, and vice a versa. This one seems obvious, but it isn't as easy to accept when you've made it youself. Always room for improvement!
4) The smell of baking cookies will cheer any mood and warm any home.
5) Cookie recipes will NEVER make as many cookies as they claim, even if your cookies are translucent-thin. Expect to get closer to half the recipe's yield.


At February 20, 2010 at 2:50 PM , Blogger Son of X said...

I thought the shortbread cookies tasted awesome, even if they didn't look quite like you intended, and the chocolate on them was a nice touch, a little zing.


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