Skip to main content

Bake-Off Femme Fatale

Almost every Tuesday I bake.  It’s become “my thing.”  One, HoneyBunch has a sweet tooth, and two, his all-male, barbershop choir meets on Tuesday nights, and they ask members to contribute to “the coffee break” that is held halfway through their practice.

The average member is in his 80’s, so a vast majority of them are widowed.  Some of those who still have wives live on restricted diets or at the mercy of the food at their assisted living homes. All the men look forward to the coffee break more than they care about getting their four-part harmony in sync.

At first, HB would stop at a grocery store on his way to the choir practice and buy a package of cheap cookies, but then I started doubling a recipe while baking for the home and he took a home-baked good as his contribution.

Over time the men have come to expect it.  HB says a welcome committee greets him upon arrival to see what I have sent.  They measure their Tuesday night practice on the promise of the upcoming coffee break. It reminds the single or widowed oldsters of home, when their moms or wives used to bake for them.  It gives those on strict diets or institutional meals a reprieve. 

I have had two marriage proposals (no joke!) and HB had to fend off an angry Tenor who wanted to know what made him so special (as if given a choice I would dump HB for Mr. Grumpy)!

I don’t always have time or patience to make something for Tuesday night.  On those rare occasions, HB might as well have stayed home.  He comes home with complaints and lamentations.

It gets expensive and sometime I don’t want to run to the store to get the ingredients needed to make a yummy, so on those days I throw together whatever I have on hand.  I have made countless versions of bread pudding with nothing more than frozen stale bread and a can of Carnation milk. To flavor it, I might add a handful of toasted pecans, maybe a few old chocolate chips, or some cinnamon sugar, and – voila – I am the bake-off queen.

At the once-a-year Barbershoppers’ get-together, strange men have introduced themselves.  They go on and on about “those powdered sugar cookies that melt in your mouth,” or the “miniature pigs-in-a-blanket that caused a riot.”  Were those “cranberries or dried cherries in that one strudel-like thing I made last November?”

They wink at me, grin. “Could I please make that again?”


HoneyBunch bodyguards me, rescuing me from my ravenous fans. I try to understand their need. They want me for only one thing – my baking.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Dating Challenged

I stink at dating – always have.   I sputter.   I hyperventilate.   I fail miserably every time. I blame a pathetically underdeveloped gene that got little use before I married in my early twenties, then atrophied, gathering dust and rust, until I became single again in my fifties.   I decided to use this defect to my advantage when I needed to do some investigative reporting a few years back.   While on a newspaper writing assignment on Boomer-aged dating, I sacrificed my dignity and my vanity for the sake of the story (and I got several). Thank goodness, HoneyBunch saved me from all this when we married.  (He comes up with the best dates.) I’ve decided I will “show you mine if you show me yours.”   I will swap dating horror stories with you, but you have to promise to play along. The trick here is to tell about your worst date in 25 words or less.   You must keep it clean and you cannot name names. Our little contest will run only this week and before my next blogger posting.   Me

Happy Breastday to Me!

I gave myself a very special birthday present this year – I had surgery. Before you think it was to increase, decrease, or “lift” something, let me tell you it was not cosmetic (though I could probably use a few nips and tucks at my age; the infinite number of creams I buy OTC are not working their promised magic). About four or five months ago, I discovered a hard lump about the size of a large marble in my left armpit.  I had been feeling small pangs of pain in my left chest for several months, but I figured it was just my turn to dance with heart disease.  Everyone in my immediate family is diabetic and suffers from strokes or heart attacks, so I thought – here we go; my turn. I was going to tell my internist about the pangs during my next visit, so imagine my surprise when I discovered the lump. The Drama Queen in me immediately manifested herself – cancer, I thought.  I have cancer. I searched some more and found that the texture on the left side of my left breast felt diffe

Twelve Female Hero Authors Who Influenced Me to be an Author

In honor of Women’s History Month, I decided to share twelve female authors who changed my life forever and who influenced me to try my hand at writing. Some are not widely popular so you might want to try them out. 1.    Charlotte Bront é – English – Her plotting and characters - Jane Eyre and Mr. Rochester – are immortal.  2.    Louisa May Alcott – American – I loved how she created a family of Little Women that reminded me of my sisters.  3.    Jane Austen – English – Another author who knew how to build immortal characters. Two words:  Mr. Darcy. Two more words:  hubba hubba. 4.    Emily Dickinson – American - What a poet! Her innovation was pooh-poohed at first, but now we owe her for breaking all those punctuation barriers. 5.    Beverly Cleary – American – She created a little girl in Ramona that reminded me of me when I was a little girl.  I wish I had met Ms. Cleary’s books sooner instead of when I was in my 30’s. 6.    Judy Blume – American - He