Baking Day

Summer is when we like things not to break. If they do, they will most likely stay broken. Summers are relaxing but frugal here.

Last summer, then, the heating element in our oven starting malfunctioning. Only half of it seemed to be heating up, and it tended to stay on after the oven was turned off. None of this is good.

Replacing the element was easy, but there was apparently a short in the wiring or some other issue that is above my pay grade. Sometimes you need an expert. And sometimes you don’t want to spend the money.

On the positive side, my wife has always had affection for toaster ovens, for some reason, and we have a nice one, roomy and with convection cooking. We figured we could manage in the summer with that; the stovetop still worked fine, and it’s not the time of year when we’d spend a lot of time baking and just using the oven for what ovens are good at.

And it turned out that we could manage just fine, even when summer went away. Add that countertop oven to the microwave, slow cooker, and stovetop and you can cook pretty much anything, especially for three people or less. There’s a rotisserie* and everything.

There’s a lesson here, I think, necessity being the mother of many children, although in all honesty I think we mostly just forgot about the big oven. It comes up from time to time.

This is one of those times, actually. I’ve got several loaves of bread to bake this week, which is no problem at all, but also a few dozen cookies. Size matters here only because I can only manage to bake a dozen at a time, so it’s a little more work and twice the time.

On the other hand, these cookies are for church, and we’ve got a couple of sizeable ovens in the church kitchen. I could bake them all at once, assuming enough cookie sheets, and I might just do that. Easier, and walking into a church at dusk that reeks of chocolate chip cookies is not a bad way to do a Vigil, I think. Not bad at all.

The Vigil table from last year.















*Spelled that all on my own.

Continue Reading