Monday, 7 December 2015

You can't be a Genius at everything.....

You've heard me speak (brag, boast, gloat.....etc., etc.) about my 15 year old brother Corey, a few times now I'm sure.  I'd love to say he gets his incredible intelligence from me,, no, wait....what am I saying?  Of course I should say he gets his intelligence from me.  Am I crazy?  Of course I want to say its all from me and nothing to do with our parents, or our 3 other siblings......or just his own intelligence, lol.  So....he gets his intelligence from me.....obviously, haha!

I dragged my little Minion down to my house last weekend.  There are desserts to be prepared for Christmas, like our coveted and secret family recipe for Chocolate ice cream that can not be given to anyone outside the family.....House Rules apparently.  Boy did that make for an awkward conversation one Christmas when I brought the ice cream up to my in-laws and they asked what was in it!  Technically they are my family.....but I didn't know what the "rule" was for when one of us gets married.  Could I give away the secrets from my side of the family to my husband's side of the family?  I was confused and didn't know what to say!  I just sort of sat there awkwardly, shifting in my seat, looking at my husband for support, who's head somehow conveniently at that very moment got lost staring into the bottom of his empty dessert bowl.  The bowl was empty!!!!  There was no more ice cream to find in there dammit!  HELP ME!!

Anywhoodles, I digress.  So I get my Wee Minkete down to help me (that's my pet name for Corey, its a hard one to explain, so I won't right now, lol).  He was actually excited to do a bit of baking because its basically science in his eyes.  You need to add exact measurements of this to certain measurements of that and bake it for this long and hey presto you get a beautiful dessert at the end of it.  Now he doesn't do much baking at home which is so strange to me as I was baking from I was 6 or 7.  I made my first Profiteroles when I was 12!  They were scrummy.  In any case, he hasn't had much incentive to bake basically but he said he wanted to get into baking and cooking more.  So he was all geared up for a bit of baking.   On the menu....the Family recipe of chocolate ice cream (no baking needed....that's all you're getting *wink, wink*) and a chocolate ganache cake (not for Christmas in fact....just for whenever he wanted it, lol).  But because of his inexperience with baking our baking session ended up being more of a comical evening with a mess in my kitchen that had never been seen before.  Let me begin......

Everything was going great.  We had gotten to the stage of merely mixing the ice cream and cream mixtures together so it could be put into tubs and frozen.  Needless to say when I asked him to separate the eggs into whites and yolks, his reply to me was,

"I can do it.  But is it important not get bits of yolk into the whites and possibly bits of shell too?

To which I replied......."I'll do it!"

So the mixing of the ice cream mixture requires a folding motion so not to deflate the air in the whipped cream but it also needed to be done with a bit of gusto because there was a lot of mix in the bowl.  And if you stand there gently folding, you'll be there pretty much all night.  So I showed him how to fold it in with a bit of a quick wrist action and I left him to it, turning my back to him to deal with the mess in the sink.  And then I thought to my self,

"Oh Jesus, if he has never folded anything like that, there's a chance its going to go flying out of the bowl".

So, I quickly turn to him and said... "Oh my God, I just thought.  Be careful doing that action or its going to go..........!"

And just as I said that, Corey flicked his little wrist and exclaimed "UH OHHHHHHHH".

And with that simple little wrist action and exclamation of "Uh Oh", there was our secret family recipe of chocolate ice cream.....having evacuated the mixing bowl and finding itself the whole way up my kitchen wall.  A large, long streak of dark, brown coloured ice cream mix, ALL up my WHITE tiles in an artistic splat strewn up the wall, like it was a Jackson Pollock painting.

Well, what else could we do but pause, stare at the mess and be in awe at the timing of both our exclamations and...... LAUGH HYSTERICALLY!

Then our brains kicked in and we were both scrambling for a cloth, cleaning spray, kitchen roll, dettol long haired fluffy cat.......pretty much anything that would clean the mess.  I'm busy saying things like

"Oh no, has it gone down the back of the cooker, because I can't pull that damn thing out". 

Meanwhile Corey is still laughing hysterically, trying to mop up the mess.  And I continue my monologue;

"Oh no, its all in the grout".

The response I received had me almost doubled over in laughter....again!

"Grout!!!!!  Grout??  What is grout and where is it so I can clean it?"

This is my baby brother who is basically a child prodigy and he'd never heard of grout before!  I have to admit, I was a little disappointed at this revelation because my Daddy taught me to clean grout with an old tooth brush and bleach solution.  And Daddy taught me how to clean....thoroughly and industrially clean, teehee.  Which meant he had never tortured....opps, I mean taught Corey how to do it!  So now I'm in stitches laughing at him, trying to point at the now brown coloured pasty looking stuff between my used to be white tiles.  But eventually, he got it all sparkling white again....even the grout.....and I didn't even make him use a toothbrush either, lol.

If that was the end of our giggles, I would leave it there.  But things just got giggly-er as the evening carried on!  We got over the ice cream/grout fiasco with the odd reminder of it every so often with a crack from Corey saying "Oh nooooo, my grout" in a mocking, girlie voice.   I won't bore you with everything that happened, but I have to tell you this one so bare with me.

It's the chocolate ganache cake's turn (it's pretty much a chocolate fudge cake but with ganache instead).  So the instructions for this cake is pretty simple.  No need to divide the eggs so I assume he can manage to crack those.  I even show him how to lift bits of egg shell out using the broken half of the egg shell to retrieve any wee bits that might fall in.  Now, Corey wouldn't be mad for his hands being dirty, gooey, slimy etc.  But I wanted him to go away with a bit of skill and knowledge.....even if it destroyed my kitchen.....which he was doing a pretty good job of by that stage, lol.  So I said,

"Let me show you how to crack an egg with just one hand".

He looks at me with large, horrified eyes.  Here he was having broken more eggs in 5 minutes than he'd ever done in his whole 15 years of life and I was expecting him to do it one handed.  But in his defence, he agreed to take on the challenge....he does like to learn new things.  So I cup the egg in my left hand (we're both lefties) and I'm showing him how to use his thumb to pull one half of the egg towards him, whilst using his index and middle finger to pull the other half of the egg outwards and away from him to release the egg.  But we only had two eggs left, so I could only show him one attempt of me doing it and then it was down to him to do the last pressure then?  So he watches me intently and he bravely picks up his egg, gives it a tentative tap off the side of the bowl........but instead of using his thumb to pull one half of the egg shell away from the other half...........he slowly and cautiously started to stick his thumb right into the inside of the egg.  Well obviously he realised this wasn't right.  But he couldn't adjust his was inside the egg!!!  And as it was the last egg and we needed it for the recipe, he couldn't just ditch it in the bin.  So he had to carry on with the motion he was doing as he couldn't adjust it by removing his thumb or he'd risk dropping the egg, lol.  So by now he was screaming;

"UGHHHHHHHH" in a high pitched screech that I didn't know was possible to come out of his mouth.  And as his thumb started to feel the egg squelching around his thumb, his panicked "Uggghhhhhh's" got louder and more frantic.

Well I mean the only logical reaction to this was.....yes you guessed it.....its payback for my grout......LAUGH.  And laugh I did.  I laughed like there was no tomorrow.  I enjoyed the lack of air in my lungs and the burning in my chest from laughing so much.  I took great pleasure in seeing his little thumb disappear inside that egg, knowing he had no control over the situation.  And for a young man who likes to know how everything works and control as much of everything in his life that he can....this was not a comfortable situation for him to be in, Mwahhhhh!

He was looking at me shouting "What should I do?"

I couldn't answer!  I was laughing, just staring at him with his disappeared thumb inside an egg!  And the more panicked and disgusted he sounded, the harder it was for me to answer him........or maybe I was just enjoying being the torturous big sister a little too much.....Mwahhhhh!!!  What?  Oh come on!!  A big sister has to get her kicks somehow you know, LOL.  And he can get me back by sticking me in a I'm 21 years older than him (yes....21 years older).

"AHHHHHHHHH, what should I do?"  He shouts again.

I try to contain myself and answer "Just keep'er lit.  We need the egg.  Just get it in the bowl and if there is any shell, I'll get it out."

Much to his disgust and with an exasperated "Ughhhhhh" he soldiered on.  But because of where his thumb was he couldn't do anything but continue to shove his thumb into the egg until it finally cracked open enough that he could get it into the bowl.  And as if to add insult to injury, his thumb had pierced the yolk (obviously!!  LOL) so the slimy, runny egg slid down his thumb and plopped into the bowl.  Corey quickly dropped the egg shell, looked at his hand with his fingers all spread out in front of his face.  He looked at me in horror and frantically shouts,

"PUT THE TAP ON.  PLEASE PUT THE HOT WATER TAP ON!!" as he stood with his hand held out like it was radioactive material.

Well that reaction did it for me.  I crack up again (excuse the semi-deliberate pun).  Here was my highly intelligent 15 year old genius wee brother......being beaten by an egg.  He had been confidently beating them 5 minutes before and now the tables had turned....oh the irony!  His horror at the sight of the sticky, gooey mixture of egg all over his hand had me in absolute kinks.  My sides were killing me!  He was even holding the culprit hand by the wrist with his other hand and holding it out as far away from himself as he could!  I was dying!  He doesn't get flustered over solving University level maths questions.  He can code a website in his sleep and talks about Quantum physics like he's discussing his shopping list.  But here he was, freaking out over his thumb and hand being all goo'ed up with egg.

Haha....maybe you had to be there to understand just how funny that night was.  But I had a blast.  And surprisingly.......Corey wasn't put off by his traumatic experience and even wants to do more baking with me.  Oh and the cake........OMG it was delicious.  And just to prove it, here are some photos.  Looks a bit messy with our awesome ganache spreading abilities....but it tasted incredible.

Nice little side view.  Excuse the mess.  We had just finished demolishing my kitchen!
This was so scrumptious.
Sorry this isn't a great profile photo of the cake.  Blame Corey!  He took it, lol.  In fairness though he was videoing it and managed the take a slightly blurry photo in the middle of recording.
There you have it.  Our fun filled, laughing 'til we cried, baking night.

Thanks for sticking with me.

Toodles Noodles.....Lee :)