Discovering the joys of baking during quarantine
Nothing is more comforting than the aroma of freshly baked banana bread, or a chocolate cake that fills up the room. During this quarantine, my mum and I picked up baking and discovered a whole new world that we didn’t know could transform our lives for the better. And when I read up on it, I realised there’s so much more to baking than just putting a dough in the oven. So take a backseat because we’re going on a baking rollercoaster!
Perceptive Points about Baking
Baking “bread” was created in Ancient Greece around 600 BC. However, we do know who created baking cakes and desserts as the food historians share evidence of baking skills in Ancient Egypt. I was amazed to learn that the world’s oldest oven was discovered in Croatia in 2014 which dated back 6500 years ago.
Did you know, baking isn’t just desserts? It can be pizzas, bread, croissants, and other delicacies. Healthy baking can include salads too such as a warm roasted vegetable salad, and if you eat flourishing vegetables and fruits, you are definitely healthy. However, there are recipes for desserts that don’t include a great amount of fat like s’mores [one or more toasted marshmallows and a layer of chocolate placed between two pieces of a cracker or a cookie], light strawberry shortcake and meringue pies. Fruit cakes are also healthy if you’re a cake lover. They do put a reasonable amount of sugar and fruit to balance health diets for everybody. If you’re watching your weight, maybe you could opt for a delightful fruit cake!
When I bake with my mum, I feel very proud that I have picked up this wonderful hobby during a stressful time with not a lot of things to do as everything is closed. We always start after lunch; I gather all the ingredients and then we start. Sometimes my annoying little brother joins us and does the stirring. However, desserts like cakes and cheesecakes are classics, but you can always add your own unique twist to what you make like when we made a red velvet cake, we added more sugar as it lacked sweetness. Did you know that France is most famous for having the most tempting desserts such as macarons, crêpes, crème brûlée? My favourite is crêpe because it’s like a pancake and I have Nutella [sweetened hazelnut cocoa spread] with it.
Baking allows your creativity to shine as you can follow a recipe but also experiment with your family and have some quality time. Once we made a chocolate cake, my brother and my dad helped; my dad did the measuring of ingredients, my brother stirred and goofed around while my mum and I did the rest. Sometimes, I sense this physical connection through my mind and body, which connects with baking and helps me connect to what I’m doing, which is baking. I love baking a lot and I always thought at restaurants how they do the pretty icing or how they layer it, and it comes out so smooth but I’m baking myself now, and I think I’ve got a lot to learn as learning never stops!
My mum and I took up baking as a fun activity to do together as we were all stressed out in quarantine. Another reason is that for a long time, I’ve always wanted to try my hand at baking but didn’t try thinking it would be difficult. What I like the most about baking is that it’s an art form though many people don’t see it like that; you can express yourself in baking and be creative.
Baking involves ingredients, patience, time, and creativity. Try your hand at baking and make delicious desserts. My tip is to start easy by a simple vanilla cake. Now it’s your turn to try the aroma of freshly baked goods!
Contributor: Niharika Bisht
About our Writing Program Student
Niharika is our youngest writing program student. She’s 11-years-old and is studying in Class 7 in a British school in Doha. She loves reading the most and also enjoys sketching, making art and watching movies in her free time.