Nailed It! Katee Robert Takes on a Christine McConnell Creation
By Katee Robert
I’ve been a Christine McConnell fan for ages now. I first found her on Instagram around Halloween because she’d decorated her mother’s house as like this candy house of horrors, and the combination of sweets and seriously dark stuff just makes my heart happy. It’s a win all around. Since then, I always eagerly await the next piece of edible art she posts. She had a whole Alien themed thing tied in with the release of Alien: Covenant last year.
So when I found out she’d have her own Netflix special, The Curious Creations of Christine McConnell, I was legit geeked out. Was it going to be a cooking show where she showed us how she created her masterpieces? Would it rival my love for The Great British Bake Off?
Then the show comes out and there are…puppets?
Color me confused.
I think I spent the whole first episode with the most WTF expression on my face. I couldn’t get a read on the show. Christine McConnell is dressed to the nines and glamorous AF. The puppets are so random and this strange combination of dark and hilarious, and one of them is a straight up thirsty racoon that may or may not have been roadkill at some point, but she’s not going to let that stop her from spreading her love to every creature with a heartbeat.
There is cooking, but it’s like “Bring out your airbrush and…”
WHO HAS AN AIRBRUSH JUST LYING AROUND?
Then the realization struck me. This is not a cooking show. Seriously. I know it dresses itself up as a cooking show, but there are no recipes, she’s constantly skipping over steps, and you need a tool set with airbrushes, sculpting tools, and other things normal households won’t have on hand.
After that, I was able to actually relax and enjoy the show. And it truly is enjoyable. It’s totally bananas, and really pretty, and the food looks delicious even if I can’t recreate 95% of it with the information given.
But there is that 5%. On a couple smaller things, she actually gives us enough steps to maybe put it together ourselves at home.
So that’s what I did!
I picked literally the only recipe that didn’t require an airbrush. Hot cocoa (maybe the chicken pot pie didn’t need an airbrush? I don’t remember, but I was not going to conquer THAT beast). Not just any old hot cocoa, though. This one has HORNS made of chocolate peppermint bark.
The trick of putting candy canes in the oven for 5 minutes and then molding them with your hands (OUCH, BTW) is pretty nifty. I had to toss the second candy cane back in to soften it up because they don’t stay moldable for long. Which is probably why my “horns” are a little lopsided and maybe definitely don’t go in the directions they’re supposed to. I am no artiste of the sweets.
Then you melt some chocolate. Easy enough. I can totally do that. Dip the cooled candy canes into said chocolate (OUCH again. I am not good at this). I got impatient waiting for the chocolate to harden up so I tossed it into the fridge while I figured out how I’m supposed to create a parchment bag. Christine McConnell might have them just lying around but I most assuredly do not.
In the end, I just like… dipped a spoon and sort of made flailing motions at the horns. Very smooth, Katee. Very, very smooth.
My next hurdle was the cocoa mix itself. She just casually throws out “equal parts powdered sugar, cocoa powder, and white sugar, topped with chocolate chunks and marshmallows.” So I’m eyeballing her little container and wondering how much cocoa this freaking mix is supposed to make. Enough to feed an army?
Being me, I have like 500 mason jars in various sizes tucked away, so I grabbed one of the little ones and eyeballed it. Seems easy enough, right? I got it mostly looking not like a total mess and took a picture for posterity’s sake.
But is it any good? Because it looks like a sugar coma to me.
I’m not the hugest of hot cocoa fans, so what is a woman to do?
Test it out on the family, of course!
I’d already buttered them up by letting them devour the melted chocolate, so I heated up some milk (HOW MUCH MILK, CHRISTINE?!) and sort of…eyeballed it. The family said it was good, and they’re definitely not nice enough to lie to me to spare my delicate feelings.
So I…nailed it? I think I nailed it.
I couldn’t find an actual picture of what it’s supposed to look like, so you’re just going to have to take my word for it. I TOTALLY nailed it!
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About the Author
New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Katee Robert learned to tell her stories at her grandpa’s knee. Her 2015 title The Marriage Contract was a RITA finalist, and RT Book Reviews named it 'a compulsively readable book with just the right amount of suspense and tension." When not writing sexy contemporary and romantic suspense, she spends her time playing imaginary games with her children, driving her husband batty with what-if questions, and planning for the inevitable zombie apocalypse.
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