Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Almost Time For a Celebration!

The festive bunting is up!
The blue sky... well, the blue sky is gone, but this colder weather that has returned is actually ideal for what we have in mind: Baking! Baking! Baking! A celebration of baking!

I know. It's just what you'd expect for this time of year, right?

But our oven has been a bust since October, when the power company caused an outage, which fried (roasted?!)the circuit board of our pretty, (useless?!), ginormous, fancy, double oven. We have been getting by with a very narrow side oven. It cannot handle a cookie sheet, or a Thanksgiving turkey... our dear neighbors roasted our turkey for our shared feast.

Fortunately, there is room in the side oven for our small cake rounds. Otherwise, how could Alex and William have baked a cake for Maria's birthday party? Didn't it come out beautifully? Maria added the snow flake sprinkles. It was Alex's idea to thin the frosting and let it pour down the sides.

But, besides small, tiered, scrumptious cakes, and narrow trays of muffins, we have been aching to bake! Big! Big baking, and roasting, and then more big baking!

How long has it been since we pretend to wake up in Avignon, France, with the heavenly aroma of fresh baked croissants? Answer: Too long.

Wouldn't some biscuits be delicious? This cold weather + a stew and biscuits would = warming comfort.

I miss pizza nights! I will never forget our first pizza night, but I cannot remember our last one. Pizza night does not happen without a big, hot oven.

This morning I shared happy news with Maria and her brothers: The oven is being repaired! Our fabulous repairman will arrive today with parts for the oven and our dishwasher (another sorry tale). Jamie really, truly is a fabulous repairman, and so I have super confidence that by this evening we can start the Oven Celebration! In fact when he called to confirm our appointment time, I was doing a little Blogosphere baking research... my, oh, my!

Big Oven Celebration Options:
Pioneer Woman's Chex Mix. It's the only kind I have ever made, and it makes me think of Grandma Nancy, and snow, and I like snacking something yummy and homemade. Who doesn't like yummy and homemade, and thinking fondly of Grandmothers?

From Anna Maria Horner, something comforting and sweet, like her beautiful quilts, only edible: Loukoumades! We had these at a Greek festival, and the delicacy of them, the honey... oh, I have been dreaming of them. I wasn't even sure what they were called, but this morning my heart raced, and my tummy murmured, when I saw Anna Maria's link.

Okay. If we actually get around to baking half of the recipes I have in mind, we might have to rent a jump-jump. It will keep us fit so we can keep baking and eating!

We haven't done any Christmas baking yet, and I have seen a baker's dozen of holiday recipes I would like to try... for example, Serena's "Woodsy Cake. It looks like such a fun decorating project. Maybe even simple enough for me to attempt. Or, better yet, hand this job over to the masters! Serena sweetly wrote back to me about where to find Chocorooms! If you get there first, save some for me!

Sorry to post and dash, but I gotta get ready!


nikkipolani said...

I was admiring the cake and the smooth ganache-like frosting. And then I read that it as Alex's genius idea :-) Hope your birthday celebrations are just as fantastic as their preparations look. And enjoy your Bake Day!

Alison said...

Oh, I feel your pain. I've been jonesing for a daylong baking fest (ok, maybe just half a day), but all my spare moments are filled with classwork, housework and gotta-get-these-wrapped-and-mailed work.

I've managed to fit in three separate batches of cookies between chores and errands. But it's just not as much fun as getting the kitchen really dirty and ending up with dozens of finished cookies.

So. I expect pictures, of process and product. Thank you.

(Word verification: debombo. I kid you not!!

Natalie, the Chickenblogger said...

So much for optimism. Bake day will have to wait until the supplier sends the right (ridiculously expensive) part, and Jamie can return to install it. Thank you for the birthday wishes, Nikkipolani.
And Flartus, for one reason or another, it looks like we are in the same bake-free boat... guess my plans were *debombo!*

Jennifer said...

Here's to the Big Fix, which will certainly come soon, and all the plans to take advantage of the glories of the oven. We woke up the other day to a furnace that decided to call it quits, which was particularly rough given that it was 3 degrees outside (although we're back in business now!). Never a dull moment in home ownership.

Kara said...

Woah, beautiful cake! I'm so impressed!

Renaissance Mom said...

My daughter brought some Chocorooms home from our local Riverside World Market on Saturday. They are yummy!

Tracy said...

GORGEOUS cake...and so is the banner/bunting! It's always all go at your place! ;o) Happy Days celebrating ((HUGS))

judy in ky said...

How about some malasadas from Hawaii? I love those!

warren said...

Glad to hear your oven is back in shape...but I know what you really need...a backyard pizza oven made from firebricks, etc. I'd love to have such a beast but I don't know if we eat enough pizza for that...but I bet you folks would make good use of it!

Natalie, the Chickenblogger said...

Renaissance Mom... ooh good! I am glad to hear they are cute and tasty!

Tracy... I'll be sure and share your praise with the bakers, thank you.

Judy... woman, you really do belong in Hawaii. The vote is split about malasadas in our family!

Warren... I want an outdoor oven... bricks and stone... like my grandmother bakes in. In fact, I wish I had one right now, since the fancy-new fangled thing we have is ****! I bet you could easily make an awesome one.

Natalie, the Chickenblogger said...

Jennifer... brrrrr... it makes me so relieved knowing your furnace is humming and your roof is good.

Kara... many thanks. I will share this with the bakers.

Theresa said...

Hello and happy holidays to you all! Please come and say hello, and also we are doing a music giveaway on Dec 9. Please come join if you wish.

Anonymous said...

We eat at Filipe's in Little Italy all the time!! I just love Little Italy at Christmas time.