prettypurpleparlor: The way into my parlor (Default)
[personal profile] prettypurpleparlor
As with many things, the key to successful baking is preparation. Review your list of ingredients carefully, as well as any utensils you'll need, and make sure you've got everything ready.

Muffet eyed her counter warily, still uncertain she'd chosen the right recipe.

Oh, she'd asked around, of course- the consensus had been reasonably clear on their tastes. But you could never really be sure about what someone liked unless you asked them personally.

And even then, there was always the risk they'd lie to spare your pride, even if they hated the taste. It'd be just like them not to want to hurt her feelings.

Even harder, now, because humans had all these illnesses and allergies- baking had been less risky underground, if not as profitable.

She certainly wasn't going to send a customer off unwell, much less this particular customer. It would nag at her forever if she did.

As far as anyone could tell, they didn't appear to have any particular dietary requirements. Certainly, they ate Queen Toriel's pies happily enough.

But that was hardly an indication that they liked everything the field of pastry had to offer. It was something to start from, but she wasn't going to just copy a recipe- her pride would never allow it.

Anyway, she'd made her choice. It would just have to be good enough.

Don't forget to consider the importance of presentation. A good dish presented poorly can become a bad one, simply because the experience overwhelms the taste. A careful presentation will show the love and attention you put into your baking.

She examined them intently, tilted her head to look at them from every angle as they cooled on the wire racks.

Fourteen perfectly-shaped cinnamon cookies- a recipe that included something she knew they enjoyed, with it's own original twist.

Even better, the colors had come through the way she'd hoped, which was always a bit of a gamble.

Seven cinnamon-blueberry, seven cinnamon-grapefruit, flavors carefully chosen to complement each other in taste as much as in vision.

Judging them to be cool enough to package, one hand scooped up a little red wicker basket from the counter to her left, while another began carefully putting the cookies into it in alternating rows of blue and pink.

Once they'd been positioned carefully in the basket, she reached up with her lower hands to wrap the whole thing in clear plastic, and tied it off with a brown velvet ribbon.

It'd taken a while at the craft store to find a ribbon the exact shade of brown she remembered, but the effort had been worth it.

Timing can be another key factor- it's never a bad idea to take advantage of seasonal flavors, or to make something personalized for a special occasion.

She pulled into the driveway neatly, taking care to avoid the pothole up at the front.

Muffet rather liked driving- with as many limbs as she had, she could steer and adjust the mirrors simultaneously, and still have a couple free to flip obnoxious fellow drivers off with both hands.

According to the dashboard clock, it wasn't too late in the evening. She deliberately made sure it wasn't a school night, but it would still be a shame to interrupt them while they were sleeping.

Someone who worked that hard needed all the rest they could get- not that they'd be likely to take it if offered.

She remembered the early days, when she'd realized that no one else knew enough about the spider community to really help the way they needed. The knowledge that if 'someone should do something' wasn't followed by 'and that someone is me', then nothing was going to get done...

It could be heavy.

Now ten times that weight at least rested on a pair of even narrower shoulders, with only one pair of hands to work with.

The least she could do was show them someone else noticed the effort.

Firmly pushing aside a twinge of nervousness, she knocked on the front door and waited.

It open to show a pair of curious little eyes, peeking around a mountain of white fur.

"Hello, dearie," she smiled warmly, hefting up the basket. "I wanted to say thank you. My bakery had it's opening day yesterday, and it went very well. But we wouldn't be here without you, and given everything you went through to get us here..."

She held the basket out for them to see, leaving it up to the little human whether or not they wanted to take it.

"Well. I thought you deserved the best of the lot," she finished.

She'd told them they were always welcome in her parlor, and they were. But it was one thing to say that, and another thing to make them believe it.

Words, she knew, were cheap. Gold was worth more, and actions were worth more still.

So. Something solid and real, however small and fleeting, that they could hold in their hands. To taste and smell and remember later, when things were hard...

Frisk stepped carefully out from behind their mother, and took the basket with both hands. They stared thoughtfully into it for a long moment, and then smiled.

It was small and soft and genuine, rather like they were, and it made the half dozen times she'd singed her fingers on the baking pan today worth it in an instant.

"D'you... want to come in?" they asked hesitantly, looking briefly at Queen Toriel to see if she was objecting. At her agreeable nod, they continued more certainly. "They smell good. We could have them with a cup of tea."

She stepped forward, careful not to crowd the child as she followed them inside. "Tea would be lovely, thank you."

The door shut quietly behind them. In the kitchen window, a light went on.

Someone looking in from the road could have just made out three figures sitting comfortably around the table, the smallest one gesturing cheerfully while they spoke, while another used three delicate hands to pour them a fresh cup of tea.

Finally, remember that the most important part of baking is the recipient. Share your creations with someone you care about, and it will always be delicious. -Miss Muffet's Guide to Baking, published 202X.

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Miss Muffet

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