A Baker’s Dilemma

I want to make a tall, snow-white coconut cake, with a light, fluffy frosting that’s covered in big, fat coconut flakes. I saw it on the cover of Family Circle, and it looked irresistible. I also want to bake a batch of chocolate chip cookies using the new, improved recipe I just saw on the America’s Test Kitchen show. You melt the butter first – in fact, you brown the butter. Then there’s this amazing-looking chocolate bundt cake dusted in confectioner’s sugar. I could go on, but that brings me to my dilemma.

You see, there are two of us at home now, and neither of us needs any added fat or sugar. We have to work out almost every day just to take OFF some of the fat we’ve added to ourselves. So when I’m craving the enjoyment of baking something sweet, the question always comes up: Who’s going to eat it?

I can allow myself a piece (so can he), then work like crazy to get rid of the calories. But that’s not the point – there are 6, 8, or 10 (maybe a dozen) MORE pieces that shouldn’t be consumed in this household. I can’t bear the thought of creating something dazzling and yummy only to throw the rest away. So I can let it sit until it grows mold (that happened recently with a covered-up apple pie), which makes it much easier to toss, or I can eat it all and regret it.

Maybe there’s a better way. My dream is to run my own bakery, but that is highly improbable and impractical (and bakers get up WAY too early in the morning). If I can’t sell it, I could give the excess away. So I’m proposing a baking exchange, sort of like a Christmas cookie swap, but different. Here’s how it would work:

I can’t resist making that lovely coconut cake, so I get the word out to my friends and/or neighbors (the nice, safe ones) that cake is imminent. Or cookies, or pie. Maybe even a nice loaf of cheese bread. You get the idea. I give them a window of time to come over, and at the appointed time, I answer the door with one or two pieces on a paper plate, nicely wrapped, and the caller takes it home to enjoy it. No muss, no fuss, no obligation to come in and chat and have coffee, although I would very much like that, from time to time. Then, when my friend gets the urge to bake but doesn’t want to overindulge, I’ll go to her house and she’ll hand me something yummy. Unless it’s lemon, because I don’t do lemon.

What do you think? Would it work? I am living in a new neighborhood and have yet to make friends of the neighbors, although Pat and Judy seem nice. There are the church ladies, some of whom live close to me, and then there’s Lisa, a woman I met through Freecycle. She’s a baker too, so maybe she has the same dilemma.

I’ll let you know what happens.