Friday, October 28, 2011

Shortbread Cookies: A Lesson In Letting Go

Yesterday I came home to a package that made my heart so happy… and made James ask “Why are you constantly getting packages?!”  Because I’m lucky, okay?  Don’t be hating.

Anyway, it was a care package from my grandmother and what did I find inside?

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::cue angel choir::

Yes my friends, my grandmother decided it was time I exit the stone age and gave me an electric hand mixer!!  Yayyayay!

So immediately I was all, what should I make

I decided upon Ina Garten’s Shortbread Cookie recipe.  You guys… what follows isn’t pretty.  At all.  However, I’m always so puzzled why people (even those who are good cooks) are weary of baking things from scratch.  Honestly, it is really just an exercise in following directions and oftentimes is much easier than you think.  But, I also think it’s intimidating to a lot of people because, let’s face it, the Inas and the Marthas of the world always make the rest of us look like a hot mess.

Fear not, for I am keeping it real.  This is Hot Mess Baking with Melina.  Let’s start off with the best cookies of the batch:

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Yep.  Those sad little sadies were the crème de la crème of my kitchen last night.  Do you even realize how easily shortbread cookies break right after coming out of the oven?  For serious, let those bad boys cool the eff down.

I will freely admit, this is going to be hard for me to post because I’m sort of super perfectionistic when it comes to baking, but obviously (like anyone in the history of forever who has baked) I make mistakes.  I burnt most of the batch

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::cue film noir lone saxophone music::

Alright fine, here’s a real picture:

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If you guessed that taking a bite of one of those would be comparable to chewing on the sidewalk, guess what?  You’d be correct!

However, I really hated the idea of throwing them all out.  So I figured maybe I could douse them in melted chocolate and it would help?  Right?  Because chocolate fixes everything.

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Oh hey, look!  I burnt the chocolate.

So for about five minutes last night I had a little conniption in my kitchen (and my roommate was probably all ‘What is her deal?!’)… and then I let it go.  Everyone screws up from time to time.

Even Martha.

No really.

Prison stint, anyone?


Moral of the story?  Don’t let it get you down.  Also, yay for keeping it real in the blog world!


And thanks Mimi for the mixer!!!  The cookies that didn’t burn were actually spectacular, all thanks to you!!  :)


  1. we all have our little baking snafus, the other day I made pumpkin bread, let it bake for the recommended amount of time and then took it out of the oven. the next morning the whole middle had caved in because it was practically raw.

    we still ate it all though.

    I'm sure your new mixer will make many wonderful things - have fun and keep baking!

    Chic on the Cheap

  2. Shut up... can your grandma send me a present!?

    Better yet, you just send me the cookies ;-)

  3. Great post! I hate when baking intentions go bad...I once tried to bake a cake from was pretty but it didn't really have any taste...I guess I forgot to add that bit =) Keep breaking that mixer in and you'll be a pro....then you can sell your cookies....I'd def buy some =)

    ♥ Shia {aka cookie monster's long lost cousin}


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