I’ll start off by saying that this could be more accurately titled “5 Otherwise Useless Talents That You Can’t Use Unless You Spend Vast Amounts of Time in a Kitchen”. I decided that seemed a tad clunky, and it also could be a strong turn off to potential readers. You might now be thinking, “Melanie, it looks like you’re being a bit loose with that ‘spectacular’ word. Maybe you need to tone the showmanship down a notch.” To which I would say, “Perhaps.” But might they be…superhuman? (I know, now I’m just being dramatic.) I’ll let you be the judge!
- You are able to smell the slightest hint of a burnt cookie from across a kitchen. When you’ve made the same cakes and cookies hundreds of times, you become familiar with the fine scent nuances of each item that you bake. Given that your nose has been attuned to the sweet smells constantly swirling around you, the rude entrance of a burnt odor will be an assailant to your ambrosial bliss. Given that you are able to detect this scent in its earliest stages of assault, you will hopefully be able to snatch the scorching dessert from the oven and save the rest of the kitchen from the impending wave of acrid disaster.
- You will gain hand, arm, and shoulder endurance that you would never have thought possible. Portioning out dozens of cake layers? Easy. Scooping hundreds of cookies? You won’t even feel it the next day. Without your knowing, as you are lifting those 50 lb bags of sugar and huge bowls full of dough, you are developing shoulder muscles that could rival those any regular gym goer. Surprise your friends with this hidden talent as you best them all at arm wrestling!
- Deciphering the doneness of cakes will be as easy as a few quick pokes to the finished product. You will be incredibly familiar with the bounce and texture of each cake that you make, and a couple of well-aimed taps to the surface will be all that is needed to make a decision as to whether or not that cake is ready for its exciting future.
- Your internal timer will progress to a point that you will be able to know almost exactly when 30 seconds, a minute, 5 minutes, or any amount of time has passed by and your product is due for a checking. Sometimes timers don’t start, and when the very life of your pastries is hanging in the balance, you must have a steady awareness of the passage of time so that you might come to the rescue if need be.
- Over time, you will develop a mental and physical stamina that will enable you to ignore the many tiny burns that you will incur in the workplace. From hot oven doors to scalding pans that come straight from the dishwasher, there are a myriad of ways for you to burn yourself. The way to physically steel yourself against burns is to…..well, burn yourself quite a bit. Holding hot items on a regular basis assists in this process! Your mind will become less panicked by the heat, and you will be cool as a cucumber when faced with the multitude of scorching surfaces in your workplace.
Should you be considering a career in the pastry field, then you have these exciting talents (as well as many other wonderful skills!) that you can look forward to gaining! If you do not plan on entering into the wonderful world of pastry, you will have to content yourself with standing in awe and watching the professionals exercise their extraordinary abilities.