Last night I decided to make a cake. Nothing fancy, just a boxed cake mix. Just because I wanted a piece of cake. I figured JM, who is staying at my house as I travel to a wedding this weekend, might enjoy it too. So out came the strawberry cake mix, juice (makes it even better than adding water), oil, eggs, a bowl, the mixer, and the cake pan. I whipped up the cake mix, tossed it in the oven, and set the timer a few minutes short of the shortest suggest bake time.
Now, you ask why a few minutes short of the bake time? New ovens are unpredictable. They should not be as baking is much more of a science than an art, but they are. What should happen is that you turn the dial to the desired temperature, oven heats up and remains at that temperature until the dial is again turned. However, all too often the temperature is off, and this was my first time to bake at my cottage.
You have to understand that I love to cook. I bake primarily because I like baked goods. It is a science, and I know what parts of recipes to not mess with, and I get good results. Every now and then I forget to set the timer on a tray of cookies (a tray, not a batch), but that is the extent of the disaster.
Last night the house was smelling great as I was watching Laura Croft Tomb Raider while ironing in the living room. The timer goes off, I go to check the cake and as I approach the oven I smell burnt food. A distinctive and altogether painful and annoying smell. I pull the cake out of the oven and the bottom of it is burnt. I now have the top have cake in small pieces in a tuperware in the fridge. I am glad to say that part tasted good. An oven thermometer is on my â€˜to purchaseâ€™ list so that next time the science of baking will not fail me.
All because I wanted a piece of cake.