Why I chose to stay employed.

These muffins. They’re the perfect example of why I need to keep my job. At least for the time being.

A few days ago I made muffins out of a cookbook. They turned out great. Then, feeling all ambitious, I decided to try my boyfriend’s recipe. I wanted to learn how to make A MUFFIN. The right way. I read the book, I watched the video. I went back into my kitchen feeling confident and prepared. I was going to make THE BEST MUFFIN IN THE HISTORY OF MUFFINS.

I followed every direction to a T. I used the right ingredients, weighed everything for complete accuracy, and popped ’em in the oven. And, damn it, I couldn’t wait to see and taste them. I was going to show these puppies off. I was going to take them to The Husband and say, “See! I can do this! I can bake! I can tell that damn hotel to kiss my ass and I can start my own business! Are you with me?! LET’S DO IT!” Very Ty Pennington.

And when I pulled them out of the oven, the muffins weren’t the only things completely deflated. I could have cried. What went wrong?

And that was the kicker. That one question. What went wrong? I honestly couldn’t say. Because I DIDN’T KNOW. I don’t have the knowledge to say, oh, it’s because of this… or that… or whatever. Now let’s try again!

I don’t know how to bake. Sure, I can pull out a recipe and make it work. Most of the time I’m successful, but at this point it feels like pure luck.

These muffins are why I want to go back to school. Not for a degree. I’m not that ambitious. (At least, I don’t think.) But for a few classes that will not only teach me the fundamentals of how to do these things I love, but provide the confidence to actually turn them into a career.

In the meantime, there’s a lot to be said for a steady paycheck while you’re figuring out how to make your dreams come true.

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10 Responses to Why I chose to stay employed.

  1. Debbie says:

    Hmmmmm. They may be a little “sinky” in the middle but they definitely look delicious.

  2. TheresaG says:

    Did they at least taste good? The worst is when something smells good, but tastes and looks awful. Not knowing what happened is the ongoing bane of my kitchen experiences. Of course, I am not historically the best at following recipes. So it's really upsetting when I actually do follow the recipe and it doesn't turn out.

  3. Debbie, I'll admit their appearance didn't prevent me from swallowing one whole but, even though they tasted pretty good, they weren't just sunken in, they were greasy, too. Theresa, that's exactly why I was so frustrated. I mean, I generally follow recipes pretty closely, but this time it was above and beyond that. I was like a maniac making sure I did everything. just. so. And look what I got for my trouble! Argh.

  4. Gayle says:

    Oh, no. I'm so glad to hear that you're going back to school to learn more about the things that you love to do! Keep optimistic. I can so see you having your own cookbook, with photos taken by you of course! (Oh, and I was so happy when you mentioned your boyfriend and I knew even before I clicked the link that it was Alton Brown!)

  5. MichelleSG says:

    The class you want to take, the one that will make you understand the why's behind the sunken muffin, is chemistry. I majored in it and that's why I think Alton and I are soul mates. I love the fact that he describes the science behind cooking. It's real life, real edible chemistry. Get ye to school and learn!

  6. Alias Mother says:

    Now, see, that is a good reason to go back to school. Also, a good reason to stay employed. I think my cheerleading to leave was because, in my life at least, I have not been able to get the career I want (full-time writing) moving because I spend too much time and energy at the full-time job I don't want. I'm lucky to scrape together one short article a month. Which, in case you were wondering, is not enough to live on.But, yes, educate yourself and work, work, work at it until you feel you have the chops to get launched. Clearly, you have more motivation than me. So, go you!

  7. Mary R. says:

    You probably opened the door to check on the muffins in mid-baking. The rush of cold air will make them sink in the middle. Next time, time them and leave the door shut. They still probably tasted good, though. You remind me of me. Many times, my stuff doesn't turn out. But, try, try again — whether or not you go to school or work!

  8. Hi Mary. Not to be all “Alton Brown this, Alton Brown that,” but in his instructions, he tells you to rotate the muffins once in the middle of baking. So, I'm curious if that could really be the problem. Also, when I opened the oven door to do this, they were already sinking and looking sad. Ugh. I'm so frustrated.

  9. I've never rotated muffins when baking, and I've never had my muffins sink. Did you forget to put in baking soda or baking powder?

  10. Okay, just one (not funny)pun,I promise: From the looks of it, things have settled.Seriously, doing the “responsible” thing but! not letting go of a bigger dream sounds like the best possible solution.

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