I often finish a tough day or work week in the kitchen baking something or other.
Baking soothes me, grounds me, and stills the swirl of mental activity filling each Monday through Friday. I feel so much comfort and warmth in baking, and there’s memories to remember or begin. This week, I pulled out the speckled, cobalt blue batter bowl we bought this summer at the Vermont Country Store. When I did, I walked the streets of Weston, Vermont again – a mid-week vacation just after quitting time.
I bake to find the predictable. It somehow reassures me that a cup of flour measures the same every single time, and a teaspoon will forever be smaller than a tablespoon. I know what to do. And I love that someone’s telling me what to do. That I have no decisions to make. There’s a list. There’s order. Directions are clear, straightforward, and concise.
Baking leads me out of my mind, and I love to find my senses again. To feel the sweet, sticky weight of brown sugar. To smell vanilla’s sultry scent. To see the eye-pleasing pile of sifted flour. There’s something honest about flour, and I find simplicity in salt. I enjoy the pleasant clink of my battered, old aluminum measuring spoons.
I even enjoy clean-up. There’s productivity and a special sort of moving meditation with my hands in a sinkful of hot, sudsy water. Wash. Rinse. Dry. Stack. Easy. Simple. Mindless. And freeing.
Basics like flour, salt, chocolate chips, vanilla, brown sugar, and butter are always in my kitchen, and I’m always a little surprised at how their combination transforms the singularity of each ingredient into a collectively magical something delicious.
Something I can share. With my family. My friends. And you.
Here’s the link to the recipe I used this week: PUMPKIN WHOOPIE PIES
Best ever. And by request … I’m making more tomorrow!