I have mentioned elsewhere that I consider myself a laughable baker, and I feel there is a need to defend my position. I know I am not highly skilled or gifted at this, but I am also not the kind of person who will burn down the kitchen, kill someone if they were hit by my baked goods, or make people sick to their stomachs if they dared try to eat what I make. I am laughable compared to real bakers; I am also the first to laugh at myself for my lack of aptitude. So just because laughable sounds better, I am a laughable baker. And I am actually starting to be quite proud of it.
The reason why I feel like I need to defend this position is that people would probably wonder why I am posting baking recipes when I am not an accomplished baker myself. Well, here is why: I am honest. I will tell you if I screwed up somewhere. My recipes are not for mouth-watering, melt-in-your-mouth, scrumptious, amazing, divine, the-only-recipe-you’ll-ever-need kind of treats. They are treats that anyone can make, and I mean anyone. My kid sometimes “helps” me with them and they still turn out fine.
My recipes purposefully reduce the amount of sugar in them, even if that makes them less delicious than the sugar-loaded ones. Yes, I will sacrifice the taste a little bit if that means that you will not go on a sugar rush after having a piece. Do you know how I can be so sure they don’t give you a sugar rush? I see the reaction on my kid. When he has the scrumptious-type cakes and treats, he literally goes nuts afterwards. He bounces up and down the house, he shouts more, he has a hard time finishing even one coherent sentence, he doesn’t know what to do with himself, and it always, always ends in tears when the rush is over. You probably can’t see this with every child, but I have been an absolute sugar ogre with him. I think you can count on just one hand the times I allowed him to have any sort of sugary treat before his second birthday. And after that, I tried to let him have as little as possible, as rarely as possible. But once play-dates, day care celebrations, birthday parties etc. started to happen and he was more aware of what was going on around him, his treat consumption increased dramatically. Not to mention well-meaning relatives who chose to ignore our wishes that he wouldn’t be offered juice or cookies. (Deep breath in, deep breath out. I will not get mad about this again.) However, the amount that he has is much lower than any other kid around us. And because of that, he still gets visible sugar rushes when he eats stuff that comes from the store or home-made by ladling sugar in them. This doesn’t happen when he eats my laughable baked goods. And you know what? He likes mine just as much.
No, my laughable treats will not win awards for either taste, or beauty. But they will do the trick: they are indeed treats, they taste nice, they are good for a special occasion. And they won’t make you sick afterwards. I will never go as far as saying that they are healthy. To me, no cake, biscuit, ice-cream, or the like is, or could ever be, healthy. They can’t be. But it doesn’t mean that they have to take years off your life either.
So here’s to anyone who, like me, chooses not to use the ultimate sweet-tooth as a measure for what sort of treats they should make. Here’s to all of you who want to have a nice desert or tea moment with your family and friends, but don’t think that a month’s worth of sugar should be in one treat alone. And here’s to all who don’t think that only sugar can make kids happy. Be a laughable baker, just like me.