On Grey Days…Beware Bedeviling Baked Goods

February is the grayest month of the year and I can prove it;  even my cooking is suffering a major depressive disorder.


I love to throw things into a pot and see what happens. Sometimes I end up with a miraculous, delicious invention that could hold it’s own in a modest kitchen stadium.


And then, there are those unfortunate choices we live to regret.*

Dinner started out as basic boiled root vegetables. I had carrots, potatoes, onions, a red cabbage. I figured, “Ah heck, who cares if everything is vaguely pink?”

…then I remembered I had the makings of a nice green curry. So, I just kept tossing things in: peas, peppers, coriander, lemon grass, fish sauce, chicken, coconut milk…

Red Cabbage Swamp
Unintentional Red Cabbage Massacre


Red cabbage is so good in many things, but not as a visual aid in Green Curry Recipes. And purple curry is just WRONG!

Every time I made the mistake of looking at my meal, I felt like an institutional stew from a psych ward was staring back at me.

At least it tasted okay…as long as you closed your eyes.

Dessert was not so lucky.

It’s been a long week. My son has had more snow days, half-days and doctor’s visits than usual. I’m starting to twitch trying to keep him occupied.

So, I decided to make some cupcakes…from a box mix.

I think to myself, “You can’t go wrong with a box mix.”**

Then I remembered I wanted to try mixing in a box of pudding…so I go to the internet.

I whip everything together. Plunk some festive papers in the cupcake tray and pop those bad boys in the oven for forty-five minutes at 350 degrees, just like the cobbled-together recipe online says.

I’m watching reruns of Supernatural. The Winchesters battle God’s sister for the sake of the universe and the loving scent of vanilla wafts through the house. The oven is so warm that I can feel my toes thawing.

All is well with the world.

Supernatural Cupcakes
I searched for images of ‘Supernatural Cupcakes’ thinking I’d find Sam and Dean draped in suggestive poses covered in pastry. Alas, I did not. But the internet did not disappoint. Admire these hexed treats. I’m in awe of you, Justina Kropp/Pinterest.

Time passes. I’m distracted by a noise, pause my show, and I get up to check it out when I  realize there is still about fifteen minutes left on the oven timer…

And that’s when it hits me.

Cupcakes are not cakes. Not really. They are precocious infants that might someday grow up to be real desserts.

And they don’t take 45 minutes to bake.

Surprisingly, what I took out of the oven wasn’t entirely inedible.***

“I’ll just make a fantastic frosting and hide my crimes.” I say, with desperate bravado, the hallmark of self delusion.

Back to the internet I go…because I am a slow learner.

I wanted to make a ganache…a rich, chocolatey, mouth-gasm of a frosting.

Ganache, for those of you who don’t know, is fecking awesome when done correctly.

That last part is important.

This is what I made instead:

Crappy Cupcake 1
This really needs the sound track to the shower scene from Psycho. That’s how big a tragedy this was.


“How bad were these cupcakes?” You ask.

I’ll show you.

Exhibit A:

Cupcake vs Mango
I gave my teenage son a choice…cupcake or mango.


I myself was curious to learn whether there was any kind of sugary confection my son would turn down.

This was his answer….

Cupcake vs Mango 2
Yeah. That’s pretty damning.


So, I did the only thing a sad baker can do.

(Besides eat two anyway because. Denial!)

Garbage Cakes
Good Bye, nasty garbage cakes!

They clung to the tray as if saying, “We’re not that bad…give us a chance.”

But no. Sometimes, it’s better, healthier, to let go of the things we cannot change.

And that includes damaged baked goods.

Asterisk Bedazzled Footnotes:

*Recipes, like horses, should never be changed mid-stream.

**I was wrong. Horribly, disastrously wrong. This was the monstrous amalgamation of inattention paired with random recipe Googling–creating a cake-tastrophy.

***But they were totally indelible.

23 thoughts on “On Grey Days…Beware Bedeviling Baked Goods

  1. OMG, the other day, I made a cake for an event and decided to put part of it into a souffle dish and microwave it for us. The cake made in the oven was perfect and delicious. The one made in the microwave, yes, INATTENTION struck. Struck HARD. But my husband ate half of it anyway. I was like, “But it’s so overdone, you could hardly cut it!” He said, “It’s just a little crunchy.” If by “a little” you mean it was more cookie than cake, yeah. It tasted okay, but it wasn’t a cake of any kind. Crunchy. Very, very crunchy.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I remember the first time I had a micro-cake. It was the first time I ever saw a microwave. My mom put cake batter in a glass dish and we stared at that pinhole grill work that used to cover the window. We watched the cake expand in seconds. I think we made six or seven of the moist muffins just for the novelty of watching it rise. As for the taste? Meh. I’d rather have oven made baked goods. Usually.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. This is usually really good. I do it all the time. I just got distracted and let it go too long this time. Usually, 3 minutes is plenty, but I let it go 5. And maybe the way I usually make it is more moist and can take a longer cooking time. I dunno. This was sure crunchy. I mean, if crunchy cake is your thing, this would be the dessert for you.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I don’t know what happened to your ganache. Did you not melt chocolate? I dunno. I do believe a nice ganache can save anything, though. I only make ganache on Christmas Day. It’s kind of like a balm, to seal the day’s goodness in. lol

    I did the purple cabbage once, as part of a purple lover’s dinner. I think this is one we can all agree was a NICE THOUGHT but cooked purple cabbage is a sad sight to behold. Just sad.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. A dearth of chocolate IS newsworthy. Bad chocolate is an effing tragedy to be mourned akin to wailing at a wall in Israel. (Now we find out if Kirizar has any Jewish followers who drop her like a hot rock for that comment.)

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Bwahahaha is, by far, my favorite laugh spelling. It ranks right up there with Mwuhahaha–the evil laugh spelling. I must have a thing for impossible constructions. Who but a native speaker would invent such a spelling?

      Welcome to The Dust Season. We revel in non sequiturs and other oddities of thought. You don’t have to be a little left of center to fit in here, but it helps.

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s