I’ve been on posting hiatus, not for lack of desire to post, but due to extreme business interspersed with necessary afternoon naps with my 3-year-old.
But, there is definitely time to squeeze this one in.
I made rhubarb pie last night, a direct result of some friendly students from yesterday’s Goat Cheese Class who gave us a good amount of fresh rhubarb stalks. As it was my first time to make rhubarb pie, I hadn’t thought about putting a tray or something under the pie pan as it cooked and simmered in all it’s sweet, sour, drippiness.
Drippiness all over the bottom of the oven.
Ah, well, clean up for another day, another time. By the time the pie was out and the oven and cooled, the puddle of reddish-brown bubbling ooze, the size of a small plate, was cemented to the bottom of the oven. And, I had no time…and no desire…to chip it off.
That brings us to today’s class. When Jo said she loves rhubarb pie, I proudly displayed my 1/2 eaten homemade pie, and showed her (and her children and grandchildren) the sugar cement disc on the oven floor. We discussed how and when I would get that off.
However, I hadn’t planned on doing it while the bread for brunch was baking.
I figured it would smoke some though, so I warned the group in advance that we would be eating smoked bread with brunch.
I had not anticipated flame roasted bread.
You can follow a play-by-play of the events here:
First: I put the bread in the oven to cook.
Second: The class begins smelling the cooking bread and commenting on how wonderful it smells, that baking bread just makes a house smell good.
Third: I forget about the hazardous oven conditions.
Fourth: I see steam coming out of the vent in the oven, right smack during mozzarella stretching time.
Fifth: I open the oven. Smoke billows out. I am immediately reminded of the crusted on sugar plate on the oven bottom and my prediction of smoked bread.
Sixth: I close the oven door and chuckle with the group. Ha, ha, ha, smile, I guess we will be having smoked bread!
Seventh: Darren and Susan begin stretching their mozzarella again.
Eighth: Jo’s grandson, Travis, spoke. His comment has already gone down in history:
“Is the oven supposed to have a fire in it?”
Well, no. Actually, it isn’t.
Right now, it’s as if the waters parted. Susan and Darren vacated the premises in front of the oven. I threw open the oven door and removed the two bread pans. These thoughts slammed through my brain in rapid succession:
1. Quick! Close it! Reminiscent of when Aunt Audrey’s marshmallow topped sweet potatoes caught serious fire in her oven right before Thanksgiving dinner. She knew to slam to oven shut to “stop the oxygen flow” as her wisdom later came out. (I would have had no idea what to do.)
2. Quick! Throw baking soda on it! Nope. That would be WAY more mess to clean up.
3. Eventually it will burn out. Let it burn.
**SNAP** Travis has the presence of mind to take a picture:
4. If I let it burn, it will turn the whole pile of cement into ashes. That will be much easier to clean up.
And, so, after 3 seconds of serious contemplation, it was decided. I’d let it burn.
The house filled with smoke, the fire burned on, and eventually burned out, and I scooped up the ashes with a spatula.
Not a bad way to clean an oven, huh?
The bread went back in, the oven went back on and Darren and Susan went back to stretching.
No one was injured in any of the actual events.
– The Goat Cheese Lady