Having read Alton Brown's I'm Just Here for the Food a while ago, and because that book wasn't in at the library when I was there yesterday, I picked up the sequel, I'm Just Here for More Food.

Which is about baking.

Anybody who's ever really attempted to cook knows that baking is not as easy as cooking.  It's a series of chemical reactions, yes, but very specific ones, and if you screw up, you don't get a still edible but different menu.  You get a bunch of crap, as evidenced by the time I made box brownies and didn't add the eggs because I was absentminded…they ended up flat and stuck to the pan.  (By the way, I was the queen of box brownies in high school.  The secret is to use cold coffee instead of water, makes them a lot richer.)

And Brown, much as I love him, didn't do much to allay my fears.  In fact, I should have been using a scale for baking all along, as I did when I was in the UK…that's what they do over there, and apparently it's far smarter.  To get really good baked goods, you should measure by mass instead of volume.  That is, if you've not been in physics for a while, grams and pounds instead of cups.

But as always, he's quite entertaining, and there's a reason 'knowledge is power' is a cliché, 'cause it's true.  I haven't made my way through the entire book yet, or cooked anything from it.  I may modify his Pineapple Upside-Down Cake a little, because the other day Mom and I were talking about having some.  Southern Boy says it MUST be cooked in a cast-iron skillet, and while I respect that piece of equipment and its fine heritage, I really can't afford to buy one right now and neither can Mom.  (Not when my stuff just got here from Massachusetts via UPS, at a tune of about $1000.)  That, and I really prefer my upside-down cake in sheet form.  Personal thing.

By the way, my respect and love for AB is compounded by the fact that he's a Renaissance man liek woah…guy was a Steadicam operator for Spike Lee at one point, and was the cinematographer for REM's 'The One I Love' video.  So he kinda rocks, even if he's slightly strange about cakes.

And that, my friends…is some Good Eats.

OK, that was cheesy.

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