My dearest pals, I have been very busy today! I began my day with a stealthy jaunt in the local woods, where I managed to sample a large quantity of natures maltesers (rabbit poo) as well as blowing the cobwebs out of my flappy lug holes. Muvver and I were chatting as we frolicked amongst the frosty fronds and twigs and decided we would have a baking session when we got back home. I don’t think I need to remind you that I am infamous for my cream puffs, as well as my apple turnover.
Muvver decided that she was going to bake for Hector, as a token of her undying love and adoration for him, beard and ponytail not withstanding. She had tried many times previously to bake bread for him, but he is of a gluten free persuasion, which tended to make matters more complicated. This time however she was adamant it would be successful…it was from a kit!
Once home, we changed out of our tweeds and into floral baking pinafores, pockets as you can imagine are crucial. I keep little snacks in my pockets, whereas muvver keeps her fire blanket.
Of course we could not start until we had brewed a large pot of Earl Grey, and had rebalanced our biscuit levels with a cheeky custard cream or three. I had decided that I was going to attempt a baked Alaska as I was keen to master the blow torch.
We divided the kitchen into two distinct areas so we would not clash limbs – (be them graceful, lithe and spindly (mine) or short and chicken like (hers). Once we were arranged to our liking, we had a brief tussle over the music choice, finally settling on some jaunty Jake Thackeray and then we set to, keen to show off our culinary alchemical witchcraft skills.
Hector has been gluten free since he discovered that an excess of it was resulting in some quite lively digestive repercussions. The one thing that he really missed though was a nice loaf of bread, and muvver, keen to demonstrate her wifely prowess decided that she could create a loaf of greatness, a loaf of excellence, for him.
I myself am sedate and elegant when I bake, I gently hum to myself and swish my skirts around the kitchen in a bid to emulate a cross between Fanny Craddock and Margot Fonteyn. Muvver on the other hand is sporadic at best, absent minded and just as likely to forget she was baking if she caught sight of her favourite crow Nick (after Nick Cave) in the garden.
Today though, there was no distracting her. She was determined to follow the instructions, something she never normally does, so she could triumphantly wave a loaf of splendour in Hectors face. Consequently she was unusually quiet whilst she was weighing and mixing, she even made a note of the proving times. This suited me very well, as there would be no ‘stove to air’ potato missiles or anything that I would have to dodge. I began by making my sponge which I made sure was full of gluten (more for me) whilst my ice cream chilled in the freezer.
Then I myself chilled, kicked off my slingback’s and flicked through my subscription to ‘Which Muff’ as mine was in tatters after an especially cold snap before Christmas. Happy that my muff would soon be replaced with a new thermal version (lace edging) I slithered off the stool and made merry with my whisking. I would like to say at this point that a hound deserves credit, as a vigorous whisk can really take it out of oneself.
By this point, our respective stirrings were popped into the oven. She was fan assisted, whilst I went old school in the other oven, or t’oven as her family says.
Her work was done and she scuttled outside to see if Nick was still there. However I still had the great ice cream sculpture to create and then my favourite part, the singeing of the meringue! I am sure you will not be surprised to hear that my efforts went without a hitch. Some time later, I proudly circled the mountain of joy that I had created. Even the application of the blow torch was faultless! Although Hector refused to enter the kitchen when I was waving this about, wringing his hands and muttering about the insurance premium of his rolling pin collection increasing.
In conclusion, I had triumphed with my baking endeavour.
Now for the revealing of the loaf. Well, in her defence she did follow the recipe to the letter, but it would seem that baking was a skill that was well out of her remit.
She plopped the loaf tin onto the side and we peered in. The aroma was most unusual, a bit mushroomy and acrid, both at the same time. She tipped the contents onto a cooling rack (it emerged from the tin beautifully) and it thudded on to it like a concrete torpedo. Alas my dear pals, it had not been a success. It was like a flat house brick.
She measured the height and it was exactly one egg high. Hector loped in to see what the loud thunk had been. If nothing else, I will state that Hector is a gentleman. He cooed and trilled over the loaf, but I think we all knew he was laughing hysterically inside.
After some cooling, he cut a slice and tasted it. I will quote him here “Hmmm…what a resilient crust…and such an… unusual flavour”. He then offered to buy her a matching set of kitchen serving chisels for her birthday and scuttled off to rid him self of the unpleasant morsel slowly revolving around his mouth. There may have been some sniggering.
Pip pip for now pals!
2 thoughts on “Spindle Bakes…”
“Kitchen serving chisels” made my day… And concrete torpedo.
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I still buy bread, because my cooking has one rule. If there are more than 3 ingredients, it is too complicated!
My crumbed chicken was actually 4 ingredients, but it turned out to be worth the effort, with 2 meals eaten in one session. And no chisels required.
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