Sunday, January 30, 2011

Nightmare Therapy

This morning I jolted myself out of three nightmares. Not one-one, not two-two, but three-three. While I won't go into the details of all, the last was particularly enlightening since it involved a talk I am going to deliver this Wednesday and in my dream, it was a spectacular failure. The audience kept asking strange questions, and I was making my slides during the talk. Yes, blame the anxiety, and in turn, blame the middle-class roots, and oh wait, let's not forget the TamBrahm upbringing, not to mention, neuroses.

Amazing how detailed our nightly travels can get. Besides, dreaming in technicolour always makes my dreams that much more uncannily real. But this post is not about my dreams. Instead, it is about what I did all morning to will away the bad vibes of the night. I baked.

Now, please remember, I do not bake. I cannot bake. I haven't ever baked. So, what possessed me, you wish to gently ask? Gay abandon my friend. I figured that if this week is going to be about spectacular failure, then might as well add to the pile. I mean really, how will it hurt to pillory myself a few more times? Or wait, perhaps I'm even sticking it to the man. Hah. I mean surely if I can bake a muffin, I can give a talk. Or rather, if I can bake, then why bother with work?

My roommate C baked these last week, and they came out great. Besides the point that C bakes beautifully. But it seemed like if I were to scurry around in my half-rambling, half-grumpy, morning sleepwalk state, I might get over my trepidation at not knowing the difference between whisking and folding. So there I was, pajama-ed and bright-eyed (maybe not so much), trying not to spill batter all over the kitchen floor. It's amazing how much baking is like a scientific experiment. A pipette here, a test-tube there, six drops of something, 500 ml of something else. Whew. Horribly tiring. And most difficult to perform when clumsy, like I. Or un-scientific, also like moi. And imprecise; following the plot yet?

Lemon Cranberry Muffins

I followed this recipe from a magazine called "Eating Well".

Pretty darn good. I even added a cup of slivered, blanched, almonds. In case you were asking about poetic licence. Ye of little faith.