One of my favorite means of creative expression is playing around in the kitchen. I am far from a great cook and I’m not an excellent baker by any stretch, but I’m not afraid to make a mess and be creative in my endeavors. I don’t follow recipes; I might start out with one, but inevitably things get changed. Extra ingredients are thrown in while ones less pleasing to my palate are left out. I am at my most creative in the kitchen when it comes to baking. Banana bread has become an art form for me. Perhaps that sounds bizarre, but it’s fun to play around with a super simple recipe and my husband can’t get enough banana bread, so I’ve had to find ways to change things up a bit. His favorite is chocolate peanut butter banana bread. Mine is chocolate cinnamon banana bread.
Recently I discovered lavender. I was at our Central Market (large indoor farmers’ market) and one of the bread stands had fig and lavender muffins. I was curious so I bought one. It was love at first bite! I went back the next weekend and was disappointed to find that the did not have fig and lavender muffins again, but instead lemon lavender muffins. I like lemon so I figured I might as well try them too. Again, my taste buds were astonished. This weekend I went back looking for a new concoction of lavender and whatever, but much to my dismay they had no lavender muffins of any kind. However, my favorite coffee stand did not disappoint! They had a lavender cupcake latte on their specials board, so I bellied up to the counter and said, “I’ll take one of those! Iced please.” The coffee no sooner touched my tongue and I was in love, so much so that I made a second run. Before leaving the market, I stopped by the spice and tea stand and bought myself an ounce of lavender. By the way, that doesn’t sound like much, but boy, oh boy, it is!
This evening I decided to play in the kitchen. I ended up making black raspberry lavender cupcakes. I wasn’t sure about the pairing, but I figured I’d use what I had and I had plenty of frozen black raspberries. They turned out delicious!
Like I said, I’m not a baking genius, I’m just not afraid to be creative and get it wrong once in a while. After all, “Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep” (Adams). What could have turned out to be a rather unpleasant tasting mistake turned out to be a true gem. This is one recipe I won’t soon forget.
Adams, Scott. The Dilbert Principle: A Cubicle’s-eye View of Bosses, Meetings, Management Fads & Other Workplace Afflictions. New York: HarperBusiness, 1996. Print.