Wednesday, February 27, 2008


This is not how a brown sugar pie is supposed to look. The irony is that last night I made this pie, but accidently used 2 tablespoons of flour instead of the the 2 teaspoons of flour the recipe called for; it baked up fine, had a smooth crunchy crust over a gooey filling. Tonight I followed the recipe exactly, and forty minutes into the sixty minute baking time smoke started coming from the oven. It had boiled over, and popped it's crust over the edge. There's a huge mess on the bottom of the stove, which makes me wish I had sprung for the silicone oven mat......
So, what could have gone wrong.....possibly it's an altitude thing, and it needed more flour. Possibly, 'beat 3 minutes at high speed' refers to a handheld mixer, which has considerably less power than a stand mixer, so the mixture was over whipped, the eggs lack sufficient structure to withstand expanding in the heat, and they blew up, and/or the sugar just boiled over.
It's past my bedtime, the house smells like burnt sugar. I'm scraping piles of hardened crud off the bottom of the oven. My roommate comes in, sees me with my head in the oven and says "Kate, don't. You have so much to live for". Ha Ha Ha.
What this means is I have to do it again. Drag. Maybe I'll give this pie a couple of days off and work on some other ones. Something that can set up in the fridge and doesn't need the oven......

Monday, February 25, 2008

what's under there?

Creamy lemony goodness, that's what. This is the never-fail lemon pie, and it lived up to it's name. Unlike most meringue covered pies, which have 3-4 times as much meringue as filling, this one has almost twice as much filling as meringue, cradled by a crust made of crushed gingersnaps. It's pretty close to perfect.
I had no idea when I started this project how much strategy is involved - just making the shopping list took over an hour. It took three stores to find everything I needed. Manufacturers seems to have downsized cans and tubs in the twenty or so years since most of the recipes were written. Almost everything was an ounce or so smaller. Chocolate wafers are ridiculously expensive. Custard mix - really hard to find. That was in the third store, just before I was about to give up and go to the English market.
So, here I am, three recipes down, fifteen more to go. In the first batch. But now, it's bedtime.

Saturday, February 23, 2008


I went to bed at 4:30
it was supposed to be a brief nap
followed by a lot of activity
I got up at 11
after spending at least a couple of hours awake but stuck
in a pit of despair
unable/unwilling to get up and get busy
I looked up 'despair'
on yahoo images
and found
it made me laugh
and I feel better
and ready to go back to bed
and start over fresh tomorrow.
Laughter is good
even when it's a bit warped.

Friday, February 22, 2008

pie's the limit

My friend Mollie is a writer and editor, mostly non-fiction. She's going into production on her second cookbook, and offered me the job of recipe tester. For a book of pie - lots and lots of pie. All to be done in rather short order, as the book is due to be published in July.
Each recipe will have to be done at least once, probably more. If you're in the Denver area, and want some pie or know someone who does..........
It's going to be a challenge, following recipes exactly. Not substituting ingredients. Taking painstaking notes, writing them up so that someone who does not share my brain will understand them and be able to have a happy experience baking pie. Figuring out how to fill in the forms on computer and email them to Mollie......
Naturally, this opportunity coincides with a six week spazzalanche at work - easter production, regular production, 0ne partner out of town every other week, possibly building out the new kitchen, breaking in the intern.......if you need me, I'll be in the kitchen.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

I missed most of the eclipse because of clouds

I saw the end of it

when the moon looked as though she wore a dark beret

the redness was gone

she was pale and wreathed in clouds

and seemed very far away

a full moon in Cancer

and fully eclipsed

small wonder

that I feel small and insignificant

and blue and moody

devoid of light.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Chocolate Holidays

twelve long hours at work

making truffles for a day

i don't celebrate

return at 6 am

another day of madness

what was i thinking

work like little bees

oh chocolate holidays

long for them to end

easter left to go

molding chocolate bunnies

it's early this year

hey easter bunny

we need a bigger kitchen

sooner would be good

Monday, February 11, 2008

Where are the signs that say 'do'
instead of 'don't'?No fishing.

no playing on the ice no horsies on the bridge

No going fast down the steep sharp curve
no plummeting off the unstable bank into the creek below
Where's the sign that says "YES"
the sign that says "PLAY"
the sign that says "ENJOY"
Why do all the signs say "NO" "DON'T"
Where's the sign that just says "YAY!!!"

Saturday, February 9, 2008


non-disclosures suck

bound by honor and by word

unable to vent

so just keep swimming

just keep on swimming swimming

but feels like drowning

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

La Bete

I preferred him as the Beast

as a giant predatory cat in a lace ruff and flowing cloak

moving with silent animal grace

through his enchanted lair.

When the enchantment broke

he was ordinary

remade in the image of a man

the story taught us to despise

instead of regaining his true form.

What did the Beast really look like before that fateful day when his arrogance led him to be unkind to an old woman he perceived as ugly?

The old woman cursed him, causing his appearance to match what was in his heart,

changing him in a heartbeat from a handsome prince into a beast.

maybe she overreacted just a bit.

or maybe not.

Who can say how the prince would have turned out without such a severe reality check

Maybe it was the best thing for him

Maybe a new face was an act of kindness, a fresh start

It would be comely container for a comely spirit

I still preferred him as the Beast

Sunday, February 3, 2008


There are no skinny women
in the paintings and sculptures that attract me
lush curves, rounded arms, full faces

sensuous, serene
and comfortable in their lucious bodies

that's the real attraction

beyond the merely aesthetic

the embodiment, the at-homeness

this is who i am this is what i look like and

I Am Beautiful