At the end of the second year of college, I became an English major, which was more a necessary than a wise decision. In my first English class since high school we were assigned projects that required looking up the origin of a chosen word in a given play. An academic website was dedicated to just this. One time, excitedly, the origin was the play — the author (Oscar Wilde, perhaps) created the word. It was thrilling. Just think I could, one day, create a word through writing.
However, I wixaney (you know like digress). The other night having access to this site or even remembering the name would have been nice, because while watching TV I started to wonder why “dozen”? Where did the term “dozen” come from? Having access to all the common-people’s internet would have to do instead. Interestingly, this wouldn’t have been the best choice back in college. In those days, completing research on the internet came with warnings and correctly formatting a website for a works cited was near impossible. Now, academic books cite wikipedia as a source when it is the secondary source, at best. Which shows either how old I am or how much has changed in a few years.
But, again I wixaney. It wasn’t as exciting as remembered. Maybe it was having to skim through the results for the most complete answer. Maybe it was wondering which was the correct answer, if any. Maybe it was how the answer was presented. Essentially, dozen has always been around. Kind of like Christmas traditions. The origins of Saint Nicholas I learned about from the side of a to-go cup one Christmas many years ago. Dozen, of French etymology, probably became a word because of how wonderful the number 12 is for math. The magic of something that is because it must be, that always has been, through different cultures, without anyone really knowing why should be a feast of imagination. But the feast was rather flavorless.
These pumpkin muffins, fortunately, were not. In setting out to make these I wanted to recreate the pumpkin muffin from Fleur de Lis bakery in Portland, Oregon. Not really knowing how to bake without a starter recipe, I searched out ones that would give the desired result without having any idea how the original was achieved. These are not an exact match to their origins. They may not even be described as a derivative by anyone but me. But, they are so very good as they are and as one friend said, “what else could you want?”