Saturday, January 31, 2009

The Baking Soda that Baked a Bitter Bread

Today, two loaves of bitterly bitter banana bread later, I discovered that baking powder and baking soda are two entirely different, non-interchangeable ingredients. The recipe called for 3.5 tsp of baking powder, and I put in 3 tbsp of baking soda. Wrong ingredient, wrong quantity.

The bread texture is great, it just tastes like it was soaked in neem juice.

So for all ye beginner bakers, here is a rule:
Short cooking times (pancakes and cookies) need baking soda , which is purely sodium bicarbonate.
Long cooking times and high heat, Breads and cakes, need powder, which is a mixture of sodium bicarbonate and cream of tartar. Sodium bicarbonate dissociates pretty fast...and then the cream of tartar takes over.

short and sweet need soda
breads and cakes need powder.

The larger question is what do I do with all this lovely looking, ugly tasting bread?

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Crime and Punishment

The crime of rhyme:
there are only so many.
The curse of its verse:
the jails of deja vous.

Burnt Green Postcards

Burnt green postcards

I am sending postcards that are going
all over the world,
asking: what shall become of our dream?
When the army of hollow half-cuboidal horsemen
prepare to war with regimented rectangular footsoldiers;
and all that will be left are tree stumps
of burnt sienna
and dried brick-red blood;
when leaf green and sky blue
will all turn to charcoal black?

Maybe then, you cool dude
with your cool swagger and
cool cheap plastic sunglasses
will freeze and think
why you’ve always put
that 100% compostable and fully renewable cup
in the trash.

And you, miss fake thinker,
in perfect pose for a portrait photo
will move and uncomfortably sigh:
neither did I.

And I,
A de-clawed tiger
A de-olfactorized dog
A blinded vulture,
will smash into these empty spaces
bathed in paraboloids of jaundiced yellow,
and wait and wait
for a timid teal, tapir or tadpole
to come splashing down these
meandering ways again.