Tonight I was petrified. Gale said that I was going to help her out…. in front of people….. living, breathing people who were looking right at us. As she was talking to the crowd she also was talking to me, and would turn for a response. In the beginning, I was praising myself for giving a one-word answer. It wasn’t until I got to the kitchen half-way through the presentation to wash a particularly difficult pan that I finally became myself.
I was trying to get out a mixture of caramel, slivered almonds, chocolate cake, and honey. One of the caterers grabbed the pan and I found an empty coffee pot. He scraped what he could out of the pan while I filled a coffee pot with hot water and threw it on a warmer. Improvising.
All I can say is that never in a million years did I think being in a kitchen with caterers speaking half-spanish and scrubbing an impossible pan would make me feel so at home. But when I went back out in front of everyone, I found my voice again. It made me feel like I do every time I put on my chef’s coat: at home.
The point is, life happens fast. One day you’re making key lime pies in your kitchen, not knowing where you’re gonna go from there, and struggling through spanish class. Then the next you’re interning for Gale Gand and understanding an entire Spanish conversation in the kitchen. One day I was rocking my baby brother to sleep and hiding the choke-able legos, and the next I was up at 5am making Buzz Lightyear cupcakes for his 4th birthday.
(Leftover gumpaste is easy to turn into flowers!)
Then some Buzz colors…
Recipe from Recipezaar.com
2 cups sugar
1 3/4 cups flour
3/4 cup baking cocoa (dutch process or dark cocoa preferably)
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3/4-1 cup boiling water(see note below)
Use your favorite chocolate frosting! I made mine up, but this cupcake pairs really nicely with a saltier chocolate frosting.
* I used gum paste for the flowers and aliens.