Did you make this yourself?!

My friends know that I am a baker – and a prolific one, at that. Acquaintances know this and, from time to time, even strangers seem to be aware of it when they meet me (friends of friends or acquaintances, no doubt). Because of this, I’m always caught off guard when someone close to me forgets this and exclaims, with heavy disbelief, over the fact that my angel food cake/pie/ice creamis homemade and not store-bought or made with a prepackaged mix.

Cooking and baking both seem to be very trendy these days, with home cooks attempting recreations of elaborate restaurant dishes or exotic “street food” dishes and avidly watching hours of food tv. More often than not people are interested in cooking, even if they’re not doing it on a regular basis.┬áSurely I’m not the only one who has encountered people that are simply unwilling to accept the fact that just because they can’t make it (or don’t try) doesn’t mean that you can’t.

I’ll keep smiling and passing them another slice of cake – homemade, of course – but if you regularly encounter nonbelievers, what do you do to convince someone who believes every dessert comes from a box that yours don’t?

9 comments

  1. i get that all the time. i once made (shudder to think about it) a dressed up boxed cake for a friend’s party…all the guests were wowed and couldn’t believe that i baked. i didn’t tell them that it was probably the worst cake i ever made…

  2. I’ve never found anyone who didn’t believe I made whatever the item was from scratch, but they’re often surprised. This week marked a return to some premade stuff for us–it is too hot to bake, so I had to buy a loaf of bread from the store. I’ve been baking mine from scratch for the past several months, and it was a sad admission that I can’t keep the oven on right now.

  3. It’s even worse when you’re a guy! I love to bake, and many people just don’t believe me.

    They ask, “Where did you get this?”
    I reply, “I made it”
    They laugh, and say “No. Really, where did you get this?”
    I reply, “No. Really, I made it myself”, then give them a really condescending “i’m not kidding” look. That usually does the trick.

    It’s unfortunate and can be a hassle, but it won’t keep me from my passion!

  4. I made minty marshmallows for the holidays once and people were in total disbelief….. they kept asking, “you can make these??”

    to which I would reply, “do you think they grow on trees?”

  5. For my birthday this year, some friends gave me what they thought was a great gift for someone who loves to bake — a box of fancy brownie mix. I think some people will just never get it.

  6. Gwen, they really won’t. For Valentine’s day my boyfriend enlisted the help of a website that custom makes gift baskets. they made a basket “for my love who loves to cook.” the “my love” part was a darling teddy bear and rose-scented bubble bath. that was great.

    But the “loves to cook” part they didn’t really understand. He mentioned that I make pizza from scratch… they included a “gourmet” pizza mix (the sauce pack was spices and a can of tomato paste, and the “dough mix” was baking-soda leavened). there was also some fancy pasta with a HORRIBLE “cream sauce mix” (just add water!), some shelf-stabilized herbed cheddar cheese and a little summer sausage.

  7. I think it is worse when people try to pass off store bought as homemade. I went to a bbq recently and brought a huge batch of Oatmeal Peanut butter chocolate chunk cookied I made. Another woman brought a container of chocolate chip cookies and put them next to mine and said “Oh you baked cookies too?” They were obviously store bought…As in soft batch Chips Ahoy in a bag store bought. Sigh. My poor DH didn’t realize and took a bite and spit it out (he is a cookie snob) haha. I mean I don’t care that she brought store bought cookies, not everyone likes to bake or can but saying that you baked them? not cool.

    But to answer the original question, yes people are often surprised that things I make are from “scratch”. :) I just take it as a compliment.

  8. Once when I was in charge of the coffee hour after church, one woman told me she got her husband up and made him go because “Cindy is doing the cofee hour and she bakes from scratch!”

  9. My husband and I were invited over for home made pizza at a friends house this past weekend. I like to make pizza at home with dough from scratch, on a pizza stone. Something came up on the way over how I hoped it wasn’t a pilsbury crust.

    We get there and it is boboli thin crust (that’s like saying kraft mac and cheese is home made). I was just thankful that when I said yeah we make pizza at home too, my husband kept his mouth shut.

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