Prior to our trip, I decided I should bring some sort of baked good as a hostess gift for Joe's mom in Indiana, and this cake from Smitten Kitchen looked easy enough. I am enamored with Smitten Kitchen. The cake requires your standard baking ingredients combined with strawberries. I could make it while simultaneously making dinner. How domestic am I?
Cut to: an hour and a half later, cake batter ruined twice, simultaneously mixing the dessert with one hand and stirring the hash browns for my breakfast salad entree with the other hand. Joe shows up as flour flies everywhere.
Joe: "Maybe we could just buy her a nice bottle of wine."
But I wouldn't be deterred. My first mistake was that I didn't read the recipe carefully and mixed the butter and sugar with the flour. That went in the trash. Then I redid the whole thing, but I used a tablespoon for the baking powder instead of a teaspoon. Doh!
Everything seemed to go okay the third time around, but perhaps I made a mistake that I didn't notice. "What if it's terrible?" I asked Joe. "Will your mom pretend to like the cake?"
"You'll never know," he said.
What a polite Midwestern mom. The third time was the charm and the cake was terrific. It really was. And if you actually read the instructions carefully, it will be easy, I promise.