Failure is a clever thing. At its core lies some of the most adverse feelings a person can experience, and yet it drives us toward accomplishment. Clever little idea.
Even though I hate to admit it, I fail a lot. It comes with trying new recipes. Not every recipe is going to turn out the way you like. And sometimes outside circumstances don’t allow a great recipe to turn out the way it should. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard Aaron’s Grandma Wilson say that her divinity didn’t turn out because of the weather in Salem that particular day. There are so many factors involved when it comes to a success or a failure in baking. But when you are left staring at a complete failure after spending loads of time on it, it’s hard to maintain an optimistic attitude about possible future achievements.
And in some cases you can make a family recipe that you’ve made a hundred and fourteen times with extreme success, and on the one hundred and fifteenth time…it fails. It’s completely annoying.
It all started with this awesome copper bowl that my mother-in-law so thoughtfully bought me for my birthday.
I’ve been wanting one for about two years because expert bakers say that when beating egg whites the reaction between the copper and the whites generates a much more stable foam, with one-third more volume than you get in a standard bowl. Sweet!
So far so good! This is the largest size copper bowl available and it was nearly overflowing with whipped egg whites from only 12 eggs! I was so excited! Everything looked completely normal up to the point of putting it in the oven. It smelled divine and baked wonderfully. I took it out and immediately inverted it just like I always do.
Sometimes I fail.
And this made me real mad. I had every intention of bringing this cake with fresh Oregon strawberries and freshly whipped cream to a dinner party. Instead they got Safeway angel food cake. I have no idea why it happened. But I am bound and determined to figure out that expensive copper bowl, and when I do, you’ll know.