Thursday, June 4, 2009

Failure Cupcakes and Other Little Victories

These, I'm sure you won't be surprised to find out, are what I call Failure Cupcakes: 

See how the batter oozed over the top of the cupcake wells and took over the pan like the Blob? 

Failure, my friends.  

Lucky for me, they say that you can learn more from your failures than from your successes, and I am a true believer in this.  See that little corner cupcake up there on the right?  Where I've scraped away the cake that spilled over onto the pan?  I was evaluating my failure and calculating all the learning that would take place.  

This should mean, consequently, that winning the Foodie Fights battle was a horrible, terrible experience.  I learned nothing.  I should go back to making Failure Cupcakes.  However, it's just not true.  Winning is actually secretly kind of fun, and I think it's important to celebrate the little victories just as much as  you learn from the Failure Cupcake instances.  

Just for good measure, however, I pulled one of those Failure Cupcakes out of my freezer tonight where it's been sitting since January (yes, I actually store things that long, as anyone who knows me will attest to).  The little FC is sitting next to me as I write, it's dark chocolate crumb looking a little like the skin of a morel, or maybe a lava rock.  It tastes just a little bit like fish, quite possibly from the tuna steaks that were sharing freezer space with it not so long ago. The little cupcake is worse off...I've failed it not once, but twice!  Oh, the learning!

In any event, once I got past the fishy taste, the cupcake still satisfied my sweet craving and helped me celebrate my little victory. 

And, I have all of my readers and voters to thank.  

Thank you, thank you, thank you! I was really and truly excited when I saw I had won this week's Foodie Fights battle:  Battle Melon and Red Pepper Flake.  And, as you can see, it was all about the popular vote, so a huge THANK YOU goes out to everyone who voted for me, and to Neal of Burning Pasta for such a nice "evaluation."  It sure sounds sweeter than comments I receive on papers:

I loved how visual this entry was; food blogs, after all, are not just about recipes; they’re about description, presentation and aesthetic beauty as well.

This has a lot going for it; a very nice command of the featured ingredients, contrasting textures, seasonality, detailed, visual, meticulous instructions; this is an excellent presentation.  I also appreciate that, while the wafer and sorbet work well together in a contrast of hot and cold, each element could easily be adapted into any number of other settings on its own.  Finally, as someone who has little to no sweet tooth, I liked that this was light, bright, and not overly sugared; this is the kind of dessert I’m always on the lookout for.

If you ever visit me in person, I promise to make you yummy treats. In the meantime, I promise to deliver virtual treats here. My comments section also reached a record high for this entry--10 as of this posting--and I had several "first timers," which just thrilled me all day!  It's the little victories that count, right?  

I was, however, humbled by the other entries, all of which were intensely creative. My husband was practically drooling over Bake-Off Flunkie's Grilled Pork and Cantaloupe with Spicy Balsamic Glaze. With summer here according to my calendar, I have a feeling there is some grilled melon in my future, and I can't wait.  The salad on Charlie Sinden's page made my mouth water, as Humbolt Fog is an inspired cheese, and the combination of mango and red pepper in the dressing sounds so interesting.  Bake-Off Flunkie made the point that a sorbet duo of Cre8tive Kitchen's cantaloupe sorbet and my watermelon sorbet would be heavenly.  I can, in fact, imagine a whole dinner featuring all of our dishes (a future Epic Foodie Fights battle, perhaps?).  The meal would go something like this:  Bake-Off Flunkie's Grilled Pork and Cantaloupe with Charlie Sinden's salad and Prix Fixe's tomato confit with watermelon, along with Potato Candie's Spicy Cantaloupe Amba, (thanks for introducing me to a new sauce!) followed by the sorbet duo.  Wow.   All that pepper would certainly pack a lot of punch.  So congratulations to everyone who participated.  It was a close battle thanks to the quality of your entries.  

If you are a fellow blogger (or thinking about blogging) I would recommend doing the Foodie Fights battle.  I've been baking my whole life but have never actually invented my own recipe, apart from the crustless "quiche" I made as a five-year-old when I pretended I had my own cooking show.  Yikes.  Foodie Fights was a great opportunity for me to try something new!


becca said...

Oooh congrats on the win! Winning is always exciting but there's nothing like failures to keep you grounded :)

Shelby Reynolds said...

Congratulations on the win! Your recipe looked delicious and in particular, I can't wait to try the wafer cookies. Keep cooking, keep writing!

Almost Precious said...

Congratulations on winning the contest...but I knew you would all along...who could resist that lovely melon sorbet and a chocolate pepper wafer cookie ?
I just won the Kreativ Blogger Award and I think you are the perfect blogger to pass it on could anything be more creative that Chocolate pepper cookies ? To receive your award (should you chose to accept) please visit my blog down load the award onto your PC jpeg files and follow the simple list of requirements and pass it on.

CrisF said...

You're my favorite baker! And not just because you're my little sister and much more into cooking than me. I'm so excited for your winning recipe! I'd like to suggest a vegan baking blog upcoming; it'd be interesting to see how you navigate the difference in ingredients! Then we could make it together in July...

Brenda Campbell said...

Congratulations Danger Kitten! Good battle! I knew I was in trouble when I saw your dish, did I not say that? LOL ;o) Tell your hubby thanks for his comments on my dish on my site, that was nice. I am going to try that watermelon sorbet to see what miserably kicked my dishes backside. LOL

Almost Precious said...

You changed your banner since my last visit! Though I love the delicious cookie, the cakes do look really tasty. Sometimes it's just nice to change the scenery every now and then. Anna

Brewfus said...

The Failure Cupcakes may not have offered much in way of eye appeal, but they still tasted delicious!

rissykay99 said...

I hate failure cupcakes. They really irritate me.

I think my husband loves them, because they usually taste fine and he can eat them all without any fear of my wrath. Heh.

Congrats on the win, that's really exciting!

finsmom said...

COngrats on the win! Horray!

Ive had my share of failure cupcakes! Still taste goof though :)