The Martha Stewart Stigma


Gabi Dykema, Staff Writer

When I tell people that a hobby of mine is baking, no one seems to take me seriously. For obvious reasons, they never can seem to understand why on earth I pass time by making tasty pastries. Which is understandable, seeing as most of them have never spent time making anything more than some chocolate chip cookies or vanilla cupcakes. The stigma behind having baking as a hobby is, simply put, that most people have trouble putting on the apron and getting out the whisk for fear of looking like a 40-year-old Martha Stewart. With these stigmas, these boundaries, however, we are preventing ourselves from learning valuable life lessons that only hours passed in the kitchen can teach us.
Not only have I long forgotten about worrying over other people’s opinions, I also have learned a skill that most people today are lacking; the ability to wait, to have patience with things. There are no shortcuts when it comes to making a recipe, or else your cake will flop. There is no backspace button in the kitchen, as well as in life. When your cake does flop, and one of yours will flop, you will most likely not know why, and you’ll be left with confusion and uncertainty with what you’re going to do next; do you start again, in the hopes that this attempt will be a success, or will you quit with nothing to show for your tedious time and focus?
Patience is a long-forgotten virtue that is tricky to obtain again, with each generation spending more money on faster things, regardless of consequences. We continue to cut corners with no conscious, and, in reality, the long way is typically the most rewarding. Sure, you could go to the store and buy what you’d like from the dessert section, but those sugar cookies will never compare to that homemade something you’ve created yourself, from measuring ingredients to waiting near the oven in order to keep what’s baking from burning. Also, we all know that the batter is the best part, which is only sold in the form of oven-ready cookies, whose batter isn’t very good to begin with.
So, when I pull my apron from its hook, I wear it as a badge of honor. And when my friends and family make fun of me, they clearly are forgetting that, at the end of my baking day, it’ll be my desserts they ask for more of.