by Anna Campbell
Are you a baker?
Even more, I'm a carnivore from way back. I grew up in a farming family and farming families tend to go heavy on the protein because of all the hard physical work involved in running the property. And meat loves being roasted in an oven. All that dripping, roasty goodness? YUM!
As a consequence, I've always made great use of the ovens in the houses I've lived in. I've seen rental properties where it's clear nobody has ever touched the oven since it was installed. That would not be moi!
Nothing beats a roast chicken or a leg of lamb. And what says 'home' more loudly (or more fragrantly) than a casserole? And I love to bake treats as well. Especially biscuits and desserts. For some reason, I've never had great luck with cakes. I find doing a big tray of deliciousness in the oven is a great stress-beater and it gives you pretty instant gratification unlike other activities like, you know, WRITING! Not only that, baking makes you popular when you share the goodness around.
So you can imagine my horror six months ago, when in the middle of baking a chicken for my birthday dinner, my oven died. Picture shrieking and tearing of hair and running around like a loon! It wasn't pretty! But then nor was half-raw chicken, sadly.
A couple of weeks ago, some lovely men with hammers and screwdrivers installed a brand-new oven in my kitchen. It turns out ovens have changed size in the 20 years since the last one went in so there was cabinetry involved as well as electrical know-how. But I am now the proud possessor of a lovely oven and a half. Watch out, neighbors! You are about to be barraged with biscuits (or cookies for my American friends).
And, Oven, welcome to my house. I promise to love and care and treat you with respect... Ah, who am I kidding? I'm going to work this baby into the ground. Now where's that potato peeler? I can feel a roasty coming on!
So are you a carnivore? A baking fiend? Just a fiend, perhaps? What's your favorite thing to cook? Where do you do most of your cooking?