I am baking my very first cake as we speak. And also using an electric mixer for the first time.

I am sick and tired of hand-whipping cream for my tiramisu (which after 2 tries is still a flop), and attempting to cream butter manually. The end result looked more like squashed butter that’s been sat on by a fat lady. I’ve also thrown away trayloads of half-baked cookies that seem to stick to the baking sheets like big brown pieces of chewing gum on walls; eaten many chunks of brownies with charred walnuts and slouchy cupcakes that deflate as soon as you poke a fork through.

I started baking last year after we moved to Switzerland. I thought it was imperative for a stay home mum to be able to do some decent baking for the many kiddy parties and potluck sessions a mum has to go to. You can’t just bring along an adorable kid you know.

Baking can be so revealing of one’s character, i realised.

I have litte patience when it comes to doing a thorough preparation of the ingredients for baking. I always think I could simply improvise a recipe without mastering the basics.  This coming from someone who has never taken a single lesson in Home Economics and has never used an oven until last year. I still don’t know how to set the timer for the oven.

I tend to measure and mix ingredients very quickly without really checking if I am doing the right thing, or whether I am reading the correct page of a recipe. (happened to Rachel in Friends when she put a layer of minced beef in her trifle dessert)

I am also very mood-driven in everything I do.

I’m in a happy, calm mood tonight. Timmy is fast asleep, Alan is away, and I am listening to my favourite bossa nova music. I am taking my time to measure the ingredients properly, but shucks! I didn’t know how powerful the cheap electric mixer was and a quarter of my egg yolk and sugar mix splattered onto the kitchen table! I scoped the gooey bits up and put it back into the mixing bowl. heehee.

Well, my carrot cake turned out pretty okay, a little dry because I was checking facebook and writing my blog at the same time. Think I kept the cake in the oven for too long. But it was still a pretty decent effort.

I reckon I’ll need to endure a few more failed attempts and the house smelling of the charred remains of cakes and cookies before I can sign up for Masterchef, or officially call myself the ‘Cheena Nigella’.


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