Thursday, November 29, 2007

Batter Up!

It's the time of year when the annual Bake-Off spreads its metaphoric wings, the smells of victory and cinnamon mingling in the crisp, cold air. While the baking is good, imperative even, it's equally important to remember the origins of this hallowed ritual. Not the Bake-Off itself, that needs no explanation - as the Super Bowl is to football, the Bake-Off is to baking. No, I have in mind the art of baking itself. Join me in exploring the history of this glorious past-time.

Most scientists now believe that an early and statistically improbably accidental combination of water, egg, and flour led to the "Big Bake." After billions of years and lots of sciency stuff, a relatively young Earth saw the formation of a primordial batter. This in turn became the foundation for today's bread and cookies.

The Big Bake theory has led to other important discoveries as well. For example, black donut holes are now viewed as the most likely explanation for food's inability to escape Chuckles. Similarly, relativity was an offshoot of Einstein's early attempts to weigh the comparative deliciousness of German chocolate and devil's food cakes.

Baking is not just a science, of course. It is also an art. Consider Raphael's "Madonna with Lard," the Beatles "Sgt. Pretzel's Lonely Hearts Club Band," or Hemingway's "The Old Man and the Pie." The influence of baking on Western culture cannot be overstated.

There is a darker side to baking too, however. The Great Yeast War of 1906 left divisions that still reverberate through the shanty towns of Luxembourg. Vicious Somalian warlords have devastated that country's population with their efforts to monopolize the world's supply of baking powder. Cities throughout North America have seen their middle class neighborhoods destroyed by rampant muffin use.

But still, with all that, baking remains an integral part of our society. It is the tie that binds, that brings us together, black and white, rich and poor, fat and fatter. So put on your baking shoes, grab a sifter, and join the party!


fish said...

I have it on good authority that life began from strawberry flavored Dream Topping.

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

Absolutely spot on.

I am in full agreement with Baking. Bake on, say I.

In fact, I wish I was baked right now.

Snag said...

BP, I think that would fall into the impermissible "baked meat" category.

Anonymous said...

The current Queen hearts Snag.

Anonymous said...

LOL at Cookie Queen.

BP, I hear that brothah. AG hears that.

Snag, thanks for blogging this! We truly hope you and yours will participate along with BP and all others. We really want this to be a special bake-off this year. You know, since Jennifer is baking y'all have a chance!!

Mendacious D said...

I think the Discovery Institute may want to take issue with your unproven "theory."

Brando said...

And on the Seventh Day, God looked on His creation and said, "Needs more yeast."

Mendacious D said...

Brando, I'm surprised that the creationists haven't held up yeast as an example of a basically benevolent Creator. Any critter and eats sugar and craps out alcohol is pretty compelling evidence.