The Bake-Off

So here’s how it usually goes in my house.

Today our church was hosting a praise, pizza and bake-off night. When the bake-off was first announced, I decided that I would make my famous Chicago Crunchy Cookies, a recipe I got from Gretchen over at Second Blooming. So this morning, I took the recipe out of my recipe binder (which sounds much more organized than it really is, because the binder is just a front and back cover for a pile of unsorted and loose recipes) and I made a shopping list.


After I took the girls to piano lessons, we stopped at Tony’s Fine Foods to stock up on cookie baking supplies. In the baking aisle, Lily decided that she wanted to make a pie for the bake-off. Emmy thought that was a great idea, too, and wanted to make her own pie for the bake-off as well. We looked at the pie fillings for a few minutes, because God help me, I was not going to make two honest-to-goodness homemade pies and my cookies. Lily settled on peach pie, and Emmy wanted to make a lemon meringue pie. I was not in the mood to make meringue. But that was the only pie that she wanted to make. So, after some debate in the baking aisle, Emmy decided that she wanted to make tie-dye cake. It was the lesser of two evils; meringue or tie-die? I calmly accepted tie-dye cake, and we picked out white cake mix. Because you know–I was not going to make honest-to-goodness homemade cake and pie and my famous cookies (and the cookies were going to honest-to-goodness homemade).

We stopped by the refrigerator section to get the pie dough, bought all our baking supplies, and headed out to meet Ed for lunch. I made sure the girls knew that we would be spending the afternoon baking and they were okay with that plan.

While we were at the grocery store, Ed had washed the pans from last night’s dinner so that we could bake. (He is a good egg!) When we got home, I preheated the oven and Lily and I got to work. I showed her how to lay the pie crust in the pan. She poured in the peach filling, we made a lattice crust for the top, and popped the pie in the oven.

Then it was Emmy’s turn. We opened the cake box, mixed in the eggs, oil and water, and I divided the cake batter into six bowls. Emmy went to work coloring each bowl of batter with a different color while I greased and floured the cake pans. Lily’s peach pie baked up beautifully and the oven was ready for Emmy’s cake. We poured three colors each into two cake pans, and put them in the oven.

By this time, it was four o’clock and I had resigned myself to the fact that my cookies were not going to be made. I had spent enough time in the kitchen, and we still had to frost Emmy’s cake. After her cake had cooled, I helped her put together the layers, but she frosted the whole cake by herself.

Do I have pictures of their baked goods? Did I take any pictures of the bake-off? Did I brag about my children on Facebook? No, I did not. I meant too, but to tell the truth I was a little cranky by then.

The girls each received praise and a participation prize from our youth director, and we went home. The End.

BTW, I just took a picture of Emmy’s tie-dye cake because I know you want to see it! Lily’s pie is beautiful, too, but it’s all wrapped up and in the refrigerator. I’m not taking it out now, not even for you.

tie-dye cake

And that’s how things go in my house.


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2 Replies to “The Bake-Off”

  1. Oh wow, send me a piece will you? Although by the time it gets here, it might be even more colourful and probably alive, so perhaps not.

    I have been wanting to make carrot cake for a long time now, so I will have to go look for my ‘binder’. Which is not a binder at all, not even with the front and back. It’s just a plastic box with all sorts and hopefully carrot cake!
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