The Day Of Trial — Part #2

(Continuing from part one. . .)
         When I came back from my music lesson, I realized a couple things. 1. In my rush, I had left everything on the counter instead of in the fridge. 2. The chocolate balls I left out for dipping were a little dry. And 3. I could feel myself getting in a bad mood. Oh, and 4. It was already 3:45. (Even more of a bad mood arising. Like I’ve said in Bravery, Optimism, and Chocolate, never try to make a good impression on someone the day you have to bake a lot of desserts – especially if you’re like me. It ain’t pretty.)
         I had to crumble all the beautiful, already-made balls in order to moisten them from the inside out. That resulted in more work to remake the balls for a second time. While I was doing this, I had a new pot of cheapo chocolate chips and oil melting. Eventually, I was able to roll the balls in the lumpy chocolate and place them on the wax-paper-covered cookie sheet. Now, you’d think – and hope (at least, I did)- that I was done there, but I wasn’t.

         I took out the vanilla cookies this time and white chocolate chips. The cookies were being a little stubborn, though. After they were crumbs, they refused to mix in with the cream cheese. Psh, teenagers. I developed a technique, though. If I smash the cream cheese chunks with a spoon and then go over it with the mixer, they combine a little faster. So I did that for a couple minutes. (I don’t know how many minutes. If I had been checking, I would’ve given up on the whole thing I long time ago.) Then, I dipped them in the melted white chocolate. This time, the chocolate was beautiful. Gorgeous. It was smooth, white, creamy wonderful-ness. My only problem was that I never seemed to have enough. I’d dump some chocolate chips in my mini chocolate melter, wait for them to melt, dip a few balls, then I’d have to add more chocolate and wait some more. I guess I was being stingy. I didn’t want to put too much chocolate, be done with the bon-bons, and then have all this chocolate over that I’d have to throw away. So I went a little bit at a time. Then, I moved on to my last dessert.

         Curiously enough, the dough for the Choco-mint stars was a little stickier than before, but I could still work with it. I rolled it out, in between two pieces of parchment paper and cut out the stars. Sometime between my fifth and fifteenth star is when I realized what I had done: I forgot to add more flour like last time! Whoops. Good thing it wasn’t that big of a deal, because that would really stink if the dough was a bust.

         My older brother showed up while I was doing the cookies. His annoying mood also showed up. You’d think that the same brother that I’m giving of my blood, sweat, and tears for would be a little more courteous to me as I’m slaving away in the kitchen. Ha, that’s a good one, Rose. No, instead, he decides he’s going to make himself a ham and cheese sandwich.
         Here’s a new fact about me that you didn’t know: I like to be in the kitchen alone when I work. I don’t want to be worrying about bumping into or tripping on someone. So when I cook, it’s MY kitchen. And when even the cat knows how to whine at me from the outer skirts, there’s a problem with older brother here, in my territory.

         “O.B., move your stuff, I’m going to put the cookies there when they come out of the oven.”
         “I will. I’m almost done.”
         “The oven’s ringing. Move over.”
         “I will. I’m almost done.”

         Being the patient and kind sister that I am, I gently moved the lunch meat, bread, and cheese to the side for him, with a graceful swoosh of my hand.

         “Hey!” Was his thankful reply – can’t you hear the gratitude?

          I took an oven mitt and brought the cookies out. When I turned around, with cookie sheet in hand, I found that he was rearranging his things where I had just moved them. This was ridiculous. I pushed the package of ham out of the way again and grabbed the mayonnaise with my free hand while attempting to elbow him into submission. But the second I had a good grip on the jar, my other hand slipped and the cookie sheet went diving for my wrist. I could almost hear a sizzle. It hurt. With that, the battle of the counter-top was over (I got an injury. As usual, we call truce.), so I put down the sheet and ran my burning wrist under cold water. Usually, I put minty toothpaste on my burns. But I still wasn’t done baking and I didn’t want to worry about smearing toothpaste in my mixing bowls. It wasn’t that bad of a burn, either. About an inch long, but on the bony part of my wrist on the thumb side. (If that makes sense.) At first, it just looked like a red line, but after a while, around the line, was red and swollen, then it was a wrinkled brown line, and now, it’s going back to a red line. I always found burns interesting.
         As the mint star cookies were cooling, I poured melted chocolate and white chocolate in Ziploc bags. The best way to do this, when you don’t have a partner to open the bag while you pour, is by getting a cup and putting a Ziploc bag in the cup like you were prepping a trashcan with a new bag. Ta-da. Now you can pour at ease. Then, zip it, make sure there’s no air, and I like to wrap it in a towel because I think it conserves the heat. I’m not sure if that actually works, though. When you’re ready to drizzle, just snip a tiny bit of a bottom corner off, and you’re good to go.
I love the old-style look of this pic
         I was trying to drizzle the milk chocolate on the cookies, but my hole didn’t seem big enough. So I cut it a little more. Still, there wasn’t anything coming out. This time I just squeezed harder. A little chocolate lump fell out, and there was this sudden flood of chocolate. That poor cookie never saw it coming. From then on in, I had to, not only be careful that I didn’t drown a next cookie, but squeeze out any other lumps. This is why you invest in good ingredients, people, so you don’t have to be squeezing chocolate lumps from supposedly melted chocolate. Finished, I moved on to the white chocolate. Of course, that came out perfectly. I tried to decorate the chocolate bon-bons with my leftover chocolate. Found that less is more when it was too late, but they looked okay. I had to keep reminding myself that the desserts were for teenage boys not the queen of Sheba. Then I added green to the white chocolate to drizzle some more on the mint stars. For some reason, my brother thought I put green last time, so I thought I’d indulge him. I also thought I was done when I ran out of chocolate and all the desserts were done. But sadly, no.
         I still had to wash the dishes.
         The best part, I must admit, was getting Chinese food when I was FINALLY finished. And even though the boys only ate two of my choco-mint stars in the end, I’ll tell you that my desserts were pretty darn good.

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