Sometimes, I legit think I should I give up. My own mind is what gets me into trouble most days.
Allow me to extrapolate.
I found a recipe, a few months ago, for Kouign-Amman. I found it on the internet, where I find the best stuff. I make it quite often. It's one of our favorite things - tasty little sugar buns - and I've gotten the recipe down to a science. This morning, people were bemoaning the lack of tasty treats for breakfast
ok, so it was me, whatever, the story goes on
and so I pulled out the butter and the sugar and the salt and started making the dough. It's a laminated dough, with butter layered in and among and it's stupendous. About 7:30, I slid the buns into the oven and turned my mind to making some caramel.
Yes. I was going to make caramel. I like a bit of it in my coffee and we've been out for a while, and I had made the chocolate dipped apple slices on a stick (you KNOW, that recipe that's been going around the internet for a day or two, since Fall has taken over ever legit crevice of everyone's brain) and I needed some caramel to drizzle on the apple slices and caramel is dead easy to make. I found the recipe on the internet.
Except that I burned the first batch. No worries, it's easy to do, about half the time I make it I manage to overcook the sugar, because it's literally 5-10 seconds when it's totally perfect and I sometimes miss it. So I dumped that (burnt, smelly, gross) sugar into a jar on the counter, wiped the pan out, and started over. Melted the sugar to a perfectly copper glimmer, added the butter, removed from the heat, stirred like crazy, poured in the cream -
and it was a soupy mess. I realized that I'd added twice the amount of cream.
It was about then that I realized that the oven was smoking.
Let me interject into this conversation the reality that my smoke alarms sound off in my house if I sneeze. They sound off if we make popcorn. They sound off if someone burns a piece of pizza in the toaster oven. In fact, the one outside my bedroom went off one night at 2 A.M. - and we may be hot, but we aren't that hot.
And yet, as smoke poured out of my oven, the alarms remained silent as a tomb.
I abandoned the completed, soupy caramel and whipped open the oven. The buttery goodness of the Kouign-Amman had leaked out onto the spill pan, and there was a great gust of smoke as I reached in, grabbed the pan, and raced outside. It was so hot I could feel the heat through my silicone oven glove, and I dropped it onto the sidewalk as soon as I could. I hit the pan with the hose and a cloud of smoke plumed up
and I went back in the house to race around and open the windows and doors and turn on the fans, just so the smoke alarms wouldn't go off. Smoke was EVERYWHERE. I managed to get the windows open and the fans on and spray some essential oil spray I have
And that's when I realized that the sugar buns were definitely now overdone.
So I pulled them out of the oven and I cut the blackened bottoms off and we now have sugar nubs
and I put my mind back to the caramel and I made a third batch, but instead of pouring more cream in, I added the soupy second batch and stirred like crazy
and it worked.
Now I get to try out that internet idea that's been floating around, the one that shows the best way to get blackened stuff off a pan is to fit it with water and a squirt of soap and a dryer sheet and let it sit for a few minutes.
Maybe I should stop finding stuff on the internet to try.
(PS - the alarms work fine. My son checked them out for me.)