the underside's bright amber
Mish mash

Plainly, I am not Martha

Before I got preggers with V, I went crazy hoarding all the back issues of Martha Stewart Baby that I could get my baby-crazed mitts on. They're really beautiful magazines and certainly I aspired to live up to what I saw in them. But reality is that a girl could go zonkers trying to do that (though I still love to look at them). Case in point: in the Fall 2002 issue, there is a delightful picture of a couple of mini doughnuts.

martha martha

They look absolutely delightful, don't they? Warm, plump cinnamon-covered delightfulness. They're baked instead of fried! They have apple in them! And wheat germ! So delicious and good for Baby! As soon as I saw it, I resolved to make them for my baby, as soon as she was old enough to eat them.

Well, I don't know if I've mentioned this before, but V's babyhood pretty much kicked me on my heiny from the beginning - and then again and again. And then once more to make sure I was paying attention. In some of the long, wakeful hours of nursing and rocking and crying and just generally not sleeping, I'd think of this recipe every so often, but it never seemed to be right the time to make it. Or I did not have the energy. Or I was losing my mind. Take your pick; any of those excuses were valid.

Until yesterday.

Yesterday, after V's nap (she actually asked to take one), we went to Kroger and got the few missing ingredients we needed and whipped up a batch. Delightful! I would like to say that they were very, very tasty.

Except that they weren't.

The dough didn't rise. If you'll look here, you can see that the yeast is not quite expired yet. I am not a completely inexperienced baker. I know how to knead dough and how not to over-knead it. I know where to let it rise and I know what it looks like when it rises.

martha fail 001

I gave it 1.5 hours to rise instead of the one that the recipe called for. I couldn't wait anymore - it was almost time for V to go to bed.

So we rolled them out and cut them.

martha fail 002

Spindly looking, right? Not exactly what comes to my mind when I say the word delightful.

martha fail 004

Horrors! Seriously ugly! Poor, pathetic little "doughnuts!" We ate a couple of the tops off the holes and tossed the rest. Like a ton of bricks, they were. I did bake them a tad too long - but for several minutes less than the recipe called for.

But I'm not giving up. Today we're going to try again, using this recipe from Tartelette. Now those look delightful. I'll let you know how it goes. Oh, and if you really want to try Martha's recipe (or just look at it in wonderment like I've been doing for the past half hour), you can do that here. If you make it, please let me know. I would love to know if it works for someone other than Martha.


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ha ha. This is why I don't read any magazines.


There is nothing more sad than a doughnut that hasn't lived up to it's full potential. The first thing that comes to my mind is: baked? really? doesn't that make it something else? It might be delicious, but it's not a doughnut unless it's fried! Just my two cents worth.


I'm SO with you on the Martha thing. There is one recipe that my kids love, and we make it every fall, partly because of tradition and partly because I CAN. Maybe V would like a Boo-nilla shake?

PS. You can make them as healthy smoothies too with plain or vanilla yogurt, banana, and ice. We call those Boo-nana smoothies.

Kim Payne

-laughing- Yes, sleep deprivation has a way of making all those "good things" go out the window. Or at least move to the back burner. Kudos for trying!


I was exactly the same way after Beatrix was born--exhausted and desperately wanting to be Martha--but by the time the third kid rolled around, I'd given up any pretense of being together enough to even read the Martha magazines. Now that India's three, I slowly feel that I can tackle some projects--I bet I still have those magazines in a box somewhere...

As for the doughnuts, I bet you just got a bad packet of yeast. I can't wait to see how the new doughnuts turn out!


Well, you gave me my laugh for the day! It reminds me of the first time my mom made donuts. The same kind of thing happened, in fact I'd forgotten that family story until now. You know I think those magazines that make parenthood look all sugary and sweet really do us a disservice. How many moms feel like failures because they judge themselves to those standards. Thank goodness for blogging - we can get a touch of reality here!


I hope today's recipe turns out better! :o)


thanks for all your comments, they really make my day.

i've put off the doughnuts - i think it'll be a weekend project. :)


ahhh there was another magazine my mom gave me like Martha's after Addy was born... I wish I could remember the name. Must have blocked it ha ha Martha is sooo unfair. All her wonderful goodies and appealing colors. I think you get kudos for even attempting the doughnuts. I wouldn't even fancy to try I'd be better off sitting on the floor playing with my bottom lip. ha ha Martha, how does she find the time?


At least you tried. I was watching her yesterday, and she kept messing stuff up. Dropping things and just having a hard time. Even she has her bad days. LOL

I swear the donuts in that article look like the ones that come in a bag. Maybe they just bought those and covered them with sugar. :)

I TOTALLY feel for you on having a hard time with being a mom for the first time. I imagine the second time is going to be a lot better for you.

Have a great weekend too!


Oh, that's so pathetic! Really I'm laughing with you (I hope you're laughing, anyway). Hope the next batch comes out.

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