This week at The Pink Heart Society we have author Christina Hollis walking us through some of those Temptations In The Kitchen...
I love food – in fact, I eat nothing else. Cooking is one of my relaxations and it often tempts me away from the computer keyboard. My excuse is that the family must be fed, and making blueberry soufflé pancakes is such a good reason for missing a deadline!
It used to be said that ‘a woman’s place is in the home’. Nowadays men are keener to lend a hand, especially in the kitchen or behind the barbie. Turn on the TV and there are plenty of guys flaunting their skill with a skillet or their flashes in the pan. Much as I love cooking, I’m all for handing over the banetton now and again. My OH is a dab hand at making spaghetti bolognaise, and his big strong hands come in very useful for kneading home-made bread. The one thing he’s not keen on making is cakes. I have to do that myself, and love tasting the work in progress. Luckily(?) I’m spared the task of licking the mixing bowl and spoons at the end of the session as I delegate that job to the children.
February in England is often cold, dark and damp. It’s the ideal time for curling up in front of the fire with a good book, a cup of tea and a big wedge of chocolate cake. Simplicity is fine, as long as there’s theobromine involved! Usually I make a chocolate Victoria sponge. It’s really easy. Put two tablespoons of cocoa powder in a big bowl. Mix to a paste with three tablespoons of boiling water. When it’s cooled, add four eggs and their weight in soft margarine, caster sugar, and sifted self-raising flour. Add two level teaspoons of baking powder. Beat with a food mixer until everything is well mixed. Divide between two 8” sandwich tins. Bake at 180 degrees centigrade (or equivalent) for about twenty five minutes, or until the surface of the cakes spring back when pressed lightly with a finger. Leave the cakes until stone cold, and then sandwich them together with butter cream made from 2oz soft margarine, 6oz sifted icing sugar and a tablespoon of sifted cocoa powder. Now that’s what I call tempting!
** What is your favourite way with chocolate? There’s a copy of my current release, One Night In His Bed, for the most mouth-watering entry. **
Christina Hollis will still be trying to lose the pounds gained from post-Lenten Easter eggs when her next book, Her Ruthless Italian Boss, hits the shelves this summer. For more on Christina, check out her website.