Friday, November 9, 2012

Butter needs its own talk show.

When someone says they are a baker, the term is vague.  Are you the grab a box-mix-and-add-some-water-call-it-good-and-shove-it-in-the-oven kind of baker?  Are you the most-people-don't-even-know-how-to-pronounce-the-names-of-half-the-ingredients-that-are-in-here kind of baker? Or in between?  There is a wealth of recipes for all kinds but it always blows my mind when a devoured recipe I made has a measly six ingredients and I don't even have to bring out the blow torch to get ooo's and aaahhh's.  A well trained or even fairly well trained monkey could have made this brownie pudding.  It was mixed, baked, a la mode-ed and BAM! Masterpiece.

I mostly credit the butter.  For some reason butter raises the status of about any kitchen project.  It cures blandness, dryness, burnt-ness, you could probably spread it on that annoying person in your life and it might make them a little more tolerable too.  I would even argue that these hipsters who keep slapping bird decals on everything they own should do sticks of butter decals instead.  Instant coolness guaranteed. If Paula Dean endorses it (and she does) and everybody has a little soft spot in their heart for that southern belle (which most do) then butter must be necessary to life.
Life needs more butter.  Seriously. Don't you just wish sometimes getting through a challenging season was as simple as lathering it in something so rich and creamy and sliding out of it with ease?  I do.  But then I start to think: self?  To what benefit is this?  Take for example my brownie pudding.  It was easy.  It was divine.  But I have to count every stupid calorie in that and I gained no culinary skillz.  In case you didn't know, my calorie rules are as such:  Calories don't count if you are celebrating (because they are honorary calories), baking at high altitude (because the calories all float away), broken cookies (because all of the calories escape during the break), or before it is baked (because the chemical reaction only adds the calories post baking).  This recipe fits none of those rules.  Reason 1: It is an everyday dessert not the happy birthday kind. Reason 2: It is not a high altitude recipe. Reason 3:It is too gooey to break and have calories escape.  Reason 4: It only tastes good post baking.  Its deliciousness was temporary and it must follow the rule once-on-the-lips-forever-on-the-hips rule. The steps to follow were rudimentary and I learned nothing new for my future baking plans. Based on these factors, there is no long-term benefit to this dessert. At the end of the day, I suppose the real benefit comes from going through the hard stuff.  It may not always be easy but the reward is much greater.  As I reflect on a season of hardship and am entering into this new season of blessing, I am reminded of the steps I've had to take to get here and the transformation of my character as a result.  While ease is good, I think I'll always choose the character.
"Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope." Romans 5:3-4

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