It seems like it has finally stopped raining. Overnight our basement flooded miserably and the sump pump is working it's little motor on overdrive right now. Thankfully I don't have to rush off to work today and can take care of the mess. We are fortunate that we do not live close to the Pennypack Creek, which I'm sure has flooded out the local roads. It certainly isn't a huge problem, so we are lucky.
So I consider myself a descent baker. I have enough cookbooks, baking pans, and associated tools to prove my experience. I'm not an expert by any means, but I can bake almost anything. Last night I decided to bake my favorite brownie recipe, Ina Garten Outrageous Brownies. I have made these before and they turned out fabulous. Tonight is a Knotty Knitter group night and we are celebrating a couple of birthdays, so I thought brownies would be fitting. I pulled out all my favorite chocolates and went to work. I melted three different types of chocolate--dark, semi-sweet, and milk along with butter. It made a luscious bowl of chocolate soup. This is probably where I went wrong, because I eyeballed the quantity of chocolate and apparently used too much. Too much chocolate is not usually a problem, right? This is the batter right before going into the oven. I used a jelly roll pan that is one inch shorter than called for, but it wasn't a problem the first time I made these, so why did the batter overflow onto my oven floor?? Ughh. So frustrating. The recipe calls for baking the batter for 20 minutes, then taking the pan out of the oven, banging it on a flat surface to rid the pan of air bubles, then baking for 15 more minutes. So, at the 20 minute mark, I went to check the pan and discovered the overflow onto the oven floor--and into the openings to the underneath part--where the gas flame is! Cleaning this was insane. I really wanted to finish the baking before cleaning the oven, so I threw some foil on the oven rack underneath the brownies in hopes of catching any more drips. Maybe 8 minutes pass and I smell and notice a flame where it shouldn't be! The batter that had slipped into the bottom of the oven was on fire. I screamed fire and Chris went running for the fire extinguisher--which I promptly stopped him from using--no way was I sacrificing my brownies for that! I remembered my fire safety training at work and turned off the oven, kept the door shut and the flame (which was really small) was smothered out. Out came the almost finished brownies (only 6.5 minutes left to go) and I let the oven cool. Then I took the oven apart and scrubbed all the burned bits out. After reassembling the oven, I finished baking the brownies, which thankfully never burned themselves! They are definitely chocolately--maybe too much? I think a fork is needed to eat them. Lesson learned--measure the chocolate before melting it! Live and learn.
In the crafting part of my life, I started working on a scrapbook of sorts. Not a traditional scrapbook, but more of a collage journal. I have been collecting little clippings from magazines and such for a bit and decided to use a sketch book to assemble them. I started with some yarn related pages, of course! I used to do something similar to this in college as a type of journal. My blog is my knitting and creating journal, but I need something more, so this will serve the purpose.
I have finished four of the nine flowers for my garden party bag. I have memorized the pattern and am enjoying knitting them. I think felted they would be a cute accessory as a pin or add on to a non-knitting item. Photos later!