So today I learned volumes. . .I apparently need to have a chisel, a candy thermometer and a huge stock pile of Oxyclean in my arsenal. . .and some sliced cheese and a pair of flip flops by the door. . .
I guess I have always known in my heart of hearts that I am not the next Rachel Ray. Sure, I can cook. I can follow a recipe and make quite a few decent dishes, and I actually enjoy baking every now and then. My mom, grandmother and sister-in-law are all amazing in the kitchen, though, and they enjoy it way more than I do. I seem to have more disasters than other chefs I know. . .maybe I am just more adventurous than my skill level, or maybe I am just not as good in the kitchen as I think I am. . .either way, today I think I outdid myself in epic proportions.
I just wanted a snack. . .a simple, easy snack. When the pantry is empty, what does every hungry domestic goddess do? Pull out a trusty cookbook, of course!! (I plan on filing one more complaint with cookbook companies, by the way–my mess was entirely preventable!). I found a four ingredient recipe in my grandmother’s cookbook for peanut butter fudge, and the recipe note read, “This is fast and easy! You can make it while popcorn is popping!”. I grabbed the sugar, cocoa and milk and pull down my Betty Crocker basics cookbook for a mini-lesson in candy making and to learn what this “soft ball stage” of candy making is all about. The cookbook says you can do it without a thermometer if you do a “cold water test” and drop some candy in it and feel it, so I jump right in. Why not?
Twenty minutes later, I’m sweating and holding a crying baby on the hip farthest from the stove (Munchkin 1 decided she was done watching from her bouncy chair and needed to help–she was as clueless as her mama, apparently!) and calling my mother to complain about the mistake in the family cookbook. “I could have popped 5 bags of popcorn by now!” I yelled as my chocolatey mess kept boiling. I dribbled some into the cold water like the cookbook said after I hung up, and it was crunchy. . .the first time I did the test, the liquid dissolved, so I figured I’d better wait a while. . .guess I waited too long! Not a nice soft ball like the picture showed at all, and when I pulled the pot off the burner, the boiling liquid quickly hardened to a consistency I’d describe as “dirt clod stage,” and no, adding peanut butter to it didn’t help. . .my snack ended up as scraping a little bit of peanut butter off the top of the “dirt clod” fudge. Apparently I dropped some on one of my burners, so my kitchen smells like burned sugar, and my pot is soaking in hopes that some of it will come out. A chisel might save the pot. . .maybe. . .but if I ever attempt this ridiculous candy making again, I guess I will invest in a candy thermometer. Who knew?!
After leaving the kitchen in defeat, I piled some clean laundry from the dryer and carefully placed Munchkin 1 on top of it so I could talk to her about my disaster on our way to the living room to fold the laundry. Did I mention it was white laundry? When I picked her up, the laundry, well, wasn’t so clean anymore. She left me a beautiful poop stain on top of some of her Daddy’s previously clean clothes. Once again, an epic fail at domestic goddess status. . .laundry re-do!
I almost forgot to mention the event prior to the kitchen catastrophe. . .our yellow lab escaped when a cleaning sales person came to the door, and I had to run after him barefooted with a baby on my hip (I think it was Munchkin 1, poor child!) and a slice of cheese in my hand. Sadly, a neighbor just happened to drive by and witness the chaos. . .this stay-at-home mama business is definitely not for the faint of heart! And to think, yesterday I was worried I’d be bored and run out of things to blog about. . .I just hope the smell is gone before Dustin gets home. . .