Monday, July 16, 2012

Lessons for the Day

Baking is a tedious process and yet it is a fun one too; this is not merely based on the outcome of baking i.e. yum things to devour, rather more on the effect of stress-busting I usually experience as I bake.  So, be it at 1am after a tiring day or fresh and early in the morning, it is one of the joys I will always enjoy.

It's been nearly a month since I started this blog and 11 posts, 1249 views, a few tweets, some comments and a number of other thoughts later, I've learned a few things.

  • I thought it would be difficult to bake and blog. It is. But, it's worth it. When you hit the 'publish' button after each post, there's a sense of joy and glee. I like that! 
  • You can bake everyday but still keep an eye out on the killer elements - health, weight, urges to drown in sugar. Eat less, exercise regularly or unreasonably indulge in ridiculous reasoning. Eg: "You have been jealous that I've been losing weight and so you bake everyday. And SO I will not eat what you make henceforth." - Brother.
  • We don't get lemons in India easily, what we do get are LIMES - they are small, extremely sour and they cost Rs. 3 per piece. LEMONS are available at specialty stores. They are huge, incredibly flavorsome and cost Rs.70 per piece.
  • Two is better than one. I have two ovens, one big and the other is tiny. 'Tiny' was the result of my stay in Hyderabad when I was working there but was packed and ignored for months after I came back. I kept begging my aunt to take the oven since I now had my old awesome oven back. However, today I realize two is better than one. Tiny is spectacular!
  • My father is now used to a bite of desert after dinner.The day I don't bake, he says "No baking today?". it's more of a statement to himself than a question for me. I take it as a fond saying and it lights up my day!
  • Consistency is a huge daunting concept - in baking and in writing and in every other aspect of life. It is better not to ignore it. Show some love to consistency and you end up feeling like a superstar, ignore the aspect and it's the doldrums for you.

So in line with being consistent, here is the next offering from the hummingbird cookbook. Sugar biscuits with royal icing or as how I would prefer to call it:
"Sugar Biscuits with Lemon drops"

200gms unsalted butter
280gms caster sugar
1/4tsp vanilla extract
1 egg
400gms plain flour
a pinch of salt
1 egg white
1/2tsp lemon juice
310gms icing sugar

Preheat oven to 170degrees Celsius.
Mix the butter, sugar and vanilla until the mixture is light and fluffy. Add in the egg and mix well, scrape down any unmixed ingredients from the sides of the bowl.
Add the flour and salt. Be careful not to overmix the dough. It should be light, soft and easy to handle.
Lightly dust a clean work surface and roll out the dough. Use cookie cutters and cut out shapes.
Bake in the pre-heated oven for about 10 minutes.
The biscuits must be golden on the edges and paler in the centre.
Icing: For the icing whisk the egg white and lemon juice together. Slowly add the icing sugar and whisk till soft peaks form. Add food coloring if wanted.

So,  there you go!
Lesson learnt - learning is interesting. it opens your eyes and makes you smile.

1 comment:

  1. oyeee..more to come on consistency on my blog :P..(