Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Baking Therapy

Baking has always been therapeutic for me, especially when I feel like I am in a creative rut. Making something delicious out of flour, eggs, sugar (or agave or honey) and other ingredients makes me feel like I have achieved a minor yet tasty victory. I bake cakes when I feel particularly creative; I feel more challenged making these desserts over cookies, cupcakes, or brownies. When my efforts don’t turn out the way I want, I do get discouraged, but the feeling is only fleeting. I never think after an unsuccessful effort that I do not want to bake something else, which will hopefully exceed my previous creations.

I have been avoiding sweets during the Lenten season, but I still manage to bake and share what I have made with family and friends without breaking my ban. I luckily have taste testers to help me out, so I never give out anything that would make me feel ashamed. I will never be Martha Stewart when it comes to baking, but I am proud of some of the recipes I have successfully created from scratch. While some people I know feel constricted by the measurements required to create baked goods, or the waiting it takes until they are finished in the oven, I actually like the parameters given. I enjoy cooking meals and being creative by adding spices and other touches that are unique to me as well, but sometimes having the measurements required for baking fixed and ready to go is a comfort to me.

Even after my sweets ban is over, I am not going to indulge in them as often I have been before. If anything, I am moving more toward healthier alternatives to baking, such as gluten-free and wheat-free cookies, cupcakes, brownies, and cakes. I look forward to the possibilities, as do those who offer to be my taste testers. The compliments I do get on my baking prowess make me want to continue to improve my skills, and never give up. It is the way we should approach most things in our lives.

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