Sunday, July 29, 2007

The simple joy of kitchen appliances

I was trying to think of what I wanted to post today, but was coming up empty. I decided that I'd go to my MySpace blog and post one of my entries from my time in Oklahoma. (Yes, I know that's cheating.) To set the stage, at this point I had been in Oklahoma for about three weeks.

Originally posted April 26, 2007
Original Title: Domesticity, thy name is Katherine

I'm sitting here waiting for Lowe's to deliver a new range/oven and I'm a little embarassed about how excited I am about it. Who knew that new appliances could bring so much happiness? Zac currently has an old, 1970s double-oven in his kitchen. I'm sure it was originial with the house, which was built sometime in that decade. For those that aren't familiar with a double-oven, it has a smaller oven on top and a larger standard-sized oven on the bottom and it's all one large piece. I traditionally really like double-ovens because I can bake a pan of brownies or bars in the smaller, upper oven without the wasting space or energy heating the much larger bottom oven. Zac's double-oven, however, has caused me nothing but grief since I first starting visiting.

I've had a seriously disfunctional relationship with it going back to the first pan of brownies that I burned in it. I keep thinking that it's going to change, that it will work like I want it to, but NO. It continues to piss me off and make me want to pull my hair out in fits of rage. So it's not exactly breakin' my heart to see the thing being replaced. The main problem appears to be something with the thermostat in the ovens. The first time I tried to bake brownies, I turned the knob to 350 (or whatever the instructions said) and let it preheat. I tossed the brownies in and set the timer for 20 minutes because the instructions said 25-30 minutes. I figured this would be the safest route. So when the buzzer went off I walked back into the kitchen (I had been outside) and all of a sudden I thought, "What's that smell? Oh, $hit! The brownies are burning!" I pull open the oven and look at the thermometer that Zac has in the oven. Though I had set the knob to 350, the oven read almost 425!!

So I'm sitting there with a pan of burnt brownies, feeling vaguely like I was starring in an episode of I Love Lucy. I was half tempted to whine, "Oh, Ricky!" Ever since then I've made a conscious effort to monitor the thermometer when I'm trying to bake instead of relying on the knobs. But even that has proved to be pointless. I'll get the temp to 325 or so and then turn the knob an eency weency bit up to try and get it up to 350 and 10 minutes later it's 450!!! For crying out loud! It's gotten worse the more I've used the oven since I've been here the last three weeks. One of the things that I've been doing to kill time during the day (when I'm taking a break from the job hunt) is bake. Banana bread/muffins, brownies, Mississippi Mud Cake, pie, etc. I actually really like baking. And Zac seems to like having goodies around the house. So when I was complaining about the oven this last time around, Zac said we should go get a new oven. I have to say, I have a little bit of guilt, thinking that somehow I manipulated him into doing this, but at the same time that guy is so stubborn and bull-headed that I don't think I could convince him to do anything he didn't want to. Besides, he said, he had been thinking of getting a new one for awhile.

He doesn't particularly like the exposed electric coil style of range and a newer stove might make the house more marketable. So we went to Lowe's and got a new oven/range this past weekend. They should be here within the hour to deliver it. I'm stoked! I'm debating what I should bake first. It's a convection oven so I'm thrilled at the thought at more even baking and faster to boot. I'm also kind of excited about the range surface. I grew up with gas and while I think I still like that better, this range is one of those that has a flat cooking surface and there's no place for the food to fall down inside the coils. It should be a breeze to clean up. OMG, I sound like an ad for Frigidaire!! Maybe I should go out and buy one of those Donna Reed dresses, find an apron and make a pot roast!

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