I bake not because I love to bake but I bake because it cures my frustration with life. It allows me to escape into a realm of myself that no one else can touch.
Sitting at my kitchen table, in my robe, slippers on, my hair pinned up and my glasses on....with George Strait playing in the background....I type.
There is a relationship in my life that I struggle with on a weekly, sometimes daily basis. It is a love-hate relationship that I have had since as far back as I can remember. It is one which consumes my being at times and pushes me past limits of control I never knew I was capable of.
Sometimes I imagine what my life would be like if it was perfect. Actually, scratch that, my life is as imperfectly perfect as it will ever be and I could not be more blessed. I have these amazing people in my life that teach me each day what it is that makes life so beautiful. I was at a gas station in Minneapolis on Saturday afternoon this past weekend with Scooter (the stunningly beautiful brunette that is my younger sister) and a man was counting pennies to pay for his coffee. I first noticed his hands were chapped from the cold as he struggled to count the small amount of change he had. Then I noticed his shoes, they were worn from walking and his clothing was torn from years of wear. I took my time to pour the cup of coffee I was going to purchase with washer fluid for my car, which was waiting warm outside for me. I walked next to the man and excused myself as I pulled a lid for my cup and whispered to him asking if he had enough. He smiled at me politely only to say "I do thank you so much". As I walked away, my heart hurt and tears began to flood my eyes. When it was my turn to pay, standing there in my Burberry scarf, red wool jacket, black Sperry boots and Gucci handbag, I asked the woman if she would take my money and pay for the gentleman's coffee. She paused and said yes. As I left the gas station, Scooter asked if I had done that because I felt bad about being crabby earlier that morning. I looked at her and for only a moment paused to say "no, I did that because he needed that more than I did". I realized as I was standing outside freezing to put washer fluid in my vehicle, this man in worn clothing with his chapped hands was God.
There are moments, maybe one each second, in life that we are given an opportunity to see God but pass by because we are busy or too afraid to look. I realize, as each year passes in my life, that I have been given so much because it is maybe my destiny to share it and to pass it on to those who need it more and to be the difference I wish to see in the world.
How does this all tie into homemade Red Velvet Whoppie Pies you ask, well, let me tell you....
Red Velvet Whoppie Pies
- 2 cups flour
- 2 TBSP cocoa powder (unsweetened)
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup butter softened (the real stuff please)
- 1 cup brown sugar (packed)
- 1 egg (large)
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 cup buttermilk (at room temperature)
- 1 TBSP red food coloring
- 1 recipe Whoppie Pie Filling (see below)
- Combine flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
- Beat butter until fluffy, beat in brown sugar and mix until light + fluffy.
- Add the flour mixture and buttermilk in small amounts until combine. Do not overmix.
- Add food coloring (hence "red velvet")
- Spoon your batter, in small amounts (y'all should fit at least 16 small spoonfuls onto a baking sheet) onto a wax paper lined baking sheet.
- Place into a 360 degree, preheated, oven for 5-6 minutes. Touch the top to ensure they are done and DO NOT OVER COOK. No one lines a burned whoppie pie!
- Finish all your batter and cool them, completely, on wire racks. Be patient my mama would say.
- Make your whoppie pie filling: beat 1/4 cup softened butter, 1/2 of an 8 ounce (I used the full 8 ounces) softened cream cheese until smooth. Fold in one 7 ounce jar of marshmallow creme.
- Place a dollop (or more if y'all like lots of fillin') on the bottom side of one pie and place another on the top....making a sandwich. And yes, you can find a picture if it helps!
I encourage y'all to go out and do something for someone to make them smile. Not because it makes you feel good but because it will make them feel good. Life is too short to not try.
Lots of love from a snowy and cold Minnesota,