I’ve come to realize something about myself-when I am having a hard time with my art work, either technically or creatively, I tend to find solace in baking.  Maybe because baking is more exact, you have a recipe and you have to follow it precisely to get good results.  I’ve had some hits and misses to be sure, mostly because it took me awhile to realize you can’t wing it with baking like you might with cooking.  If the recipe calls for room temperature butter, then it had better be room temperature butter.

One of my favorite things in the world is a blueberry scone and awhile back I thought I should learn how to make them, instead of always buying them at Starbucks. After some trial and error, (and following the recipes accurately), I have had success.  Then last week, I made the yummiest little tarts for a get-together I was invited to, using refrigerator pie crust, cream cheese and frozen raspberries.  The recipe is from Catherine McCord’s website http://weelicious.com/2011/02/08/raspberry-cream-cheese-heart-tarts. Very simple, very little measuring and not much room for error.  Just combine the raspberries and softened cream cheese to make the filling, cut heart shapes out of the dough, place a dollop of filling on one heart, top it with another heart, prick the top, press the dough with a fork and brush a little cream on top, then bake at 400 degrees for about twenty minutes.  I also filled some with chocolate chunks, which were even easier and so delicious.  I iced the tarts, but they’d be good with just a little sparkling sugar.

HeartsIngred  DoughCutter  HeartsFilling (1)HeartTarts  HeartsIced

I love this refrigerator pie crust.  Since making these little hearts, I’ve used it with an apple filling and a large round cookie cutter for little hand pies.  No, I’m not eating all of these treats, but happily sharing them with family and snowbound neighbors.

I’m now back to work on some art, so I guess this distraction helps in a way, getting away for a bit.  I wonder how others deal with a creative block when it strikes.

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