Why Baking Makes Me Happy
Hey everyone – Freya here! Today’s blog is something that I’ve been wanting to write about for a while. And I’ve finally found the time to do it (yay!). Most of you know how much I LOVE baking, cooking and pretty much anything that involves food – provided it’s veggie-friendly, of course! But food is for so much more than just eating; obviously, it’s great if I can whip something up that tastes good, but for me it’s about the process of making, baking and creating that I love so much.
I’m sure there are studies out there but I’m not going to bore you with any research right now (plus I haven’t done any extensive Googling…) You’ll just have to take my word on this! Baking can be truly transformative and in this blog, I’m going to explain just a few of the reasons why!
Stress is one of those things that pretty much all of face from time to time. When stress comes knocking, it tends to be all-consuming. Sometimes, we get so caught up in our stress that we forget what caused it. As a result, we end up stressing out about being stressed. I mean, that was pretty tough-going just to write, so you can see how quickly things can spiral out of control!
That’s where a spot of baking comes in handy. Pretty much any and every form of cooking requires some degree of concentration – hell, you’ve even gotta eagle-eye that pan when you’re smashing out some beans on toast. Even with simpler recipes, you still need to devote a fair bit of your attention to following the instructions, setting timers and not letting things catch on fire. This is incredible at taking your mind off stress.
I honestly believe there’s a solution out there to virtually every problem we encounter in our day-to-day lives. More often than not, for me at least, the biggest challenge is trying to get ourselves to a point where we can actually figure out that solution clearly and calmly. The moment I start baking, my mind is taken away from the stuffy, stressful headspace and it allows me to find some calm. Plus, when you bake, you don’t just get a distraction, you get freshly baked goods. Sorry for the awkward, upcoming pun but I really can’t stress that last point enough!
Not all of us are naturally gifted when it comes to creativity. We can’t all paint a masterpiece with our eyes closed or write a best-selling novel at the age of 12. But baking allows you to open up a world of creativity that you may never have known existed. For me, baking is a great way to experiment and try new things. And creativity can come from pretty much anywhere – be it the ingredients you use or how you choose to present the finished goods. Now, sometimes I’ve rather smugly decided on some elaborate kind of presentation which then completely backfires – not everything works out 100% of the time – but even then, I haven’t left feeling utterly crushed or despondent. Ultimately, I still have that satisfaction and feeling of creativity. When you bake, you are taking such simple ingredients and turning them into something completely different. You’re literally creating. And, really, what could be more creative than that?!
There is no greater feeling than giving to others – I realise quite how cheesy that sounds but it’s true! Baking makes me happy because of how good it feels to make something for other people. I love serving homemade treats to guests or putting a smile on someone’s face by baking just for them. Next time you’ve got people coming round or you’re stopping by a friend/family’s house, try whipping up their favourite flapjack, cake or cookie. Trust me, it feels so good to give! Plus, they’ll probably let you have a bite or two…
Do it for yourself
I’ve got other hobbies, but baking and cooking are two things that, despite enjoying the feeling of giving to others, I love to do just for myself. With all the above points in mind, baking is such a good way to relax while still doing something productive. Also, if you’ve ever made vegan meringues, you’ll know just how insanely rewarding baking can be. Not to boast, but I once veganised a Mary Berry recipe for Lemon Meringue Pie that called for 12 eggs! If that doesn’t inspire you, I don’t know what will! Oh, but word of advice: if you’ve ever considered making panettone from scratch (which is what I’m making in these pictures) then just don’t. Trust me!
I really hope you’ve found this blog helpful and it’s inspired you to get experimenting with baking. This post is slightly different to my usual blogs. That said, I’d love to hear whether you liked it and if you’d be interested in more of this kind!