One of my first memories of any type of cooking was when I was about 12 years old. I wanted to try my hand at baking. From what I can rememeber my mom was working full-time and left a pot of chili for dinner to be reheated. Taking iniative into my own hands, cornbread was going to be my first baking adventure.
I pulled a box of Jiffy Mix out of the cabinet and proceeded to read the directions. Knowing that I was really not supposed to use the oven at that age, I kept the cornbread as a surprise for dinner. Thinking that my cornbread was not to be any old cornbread, I followed the instructions for making the deluxe version.
The mix called for the addition of "whole kernel corn". Without knowing better, I went to the cabinet and grabbed what I thought was "whole kernel corn" and added it to the batter. In the oven the loaf went. In the meantime, my grandparents were on their way for dinner.
Everyone was due home at 5:00pm, the loaf of bread came out of the oven looking golden and plump. My first venture into the baking world was a success. I was brimming with pride when my parents walked in. As we begin to eat, I sliced the loaf of cornbread and passed it around. My grandfather, being the patient and supportive person he was, took a piece and began to eat it. "This is good" he exclaimed. As the bread rounded the table to my mom, she asked "What are the lumps in the bread? I proudly told them all that I made the deluxe version and added "whole kernel corn". My mom, trying to fight back laughter, replied "Whole kernel corn is not un popped popping corn."
But still, after all these years of cooking, one learns that sometimes you make things that turn out well and some, well let's just say....Not so well! Always remember, you never stop learning.