Why am I always taking on ridiculous tasks that aren’t my responsibility? I really need to stop that. This time, it’s curating an exhibition of gingerbread from around the world for the local bowls club’s annual Christmas fundraiser. Marge had the idea, and I foolishly put up hand to execute it, not realising that it would fall to me to research, learn to make and present the entire contents of the exhibition – all before December 15th.
I guess I got over-excited due to recently unlocking a latent knack for making iced gingerbread, to much critical acclaim from my grandchildren and their friends. The problem is that it’s taken me the better part of the year to perfect that recipe. I now have less than a month to master speculaas, honey rye iced gingerbread, sticky Jamaican ginger loaf, ginger Christmas loaf, maple-ginger scones and heaven only knows what else.
On the upside, my son-in-law’s brother runs a large commercial kitchen-for-hire, and has offered to let me use it as a test kitchen… or a crash test kitchen, if my previous efforts have been anything to go by. It’s a lovely offer, and I suspect it has a lot to do his kids’ rave reviews of my iced gingerbread. I hope he’s not expecting me to be some kind of baking genius, but we’ll cross that bridge if we come to it.
We did have a wonderful chat about the way the kitchen is powered. I remarked on the excellent quality of the lighting in the space, and he explained that it’s the LED tube light fittings. Apparently, these use much less energy than older types of industrial lighting, which is amazing because the light quality is so much better. I lost track a bit when he started telling me about commercial battery storage and powerwalls and monitoring systems, but the essential takeaway is that the whole operation is carbon neutral.
It’s more pressure to perform, though. Now the local newspaper wants to run an interview with the grandma who’s reducing the town’s carbon footprint one ginger stem at a time, when really I’m just out to win favour with the grand-kids.