What's new? Not much. I didn’t bake much over the summer, but when I did turn the oven on, I mostly pulled out recipes for long-forgotten favourites: puddings and cakes and bikkies I made with a crush-like frequency months or even years ago, but I haven’t touched since.
Melting moments — with or without that daub of rich goo — were the first things I baked. I'd been craving these magically short little biscuits for weeks, so much so that I bought one at a cafe. A disappointing move — dry and hard; definitely stale (do you ever find the stuff you make is far superior to what’s in the shops?). I wouldn’t be satisfied until I made my own. Once I did, I decided that I really should have a tin of these in the kitchen at all times, like a sweet staple!
But then I moved on … to bread and butter pudding. B&Bs aren’t obvious summer fare, but when there’s rich stone fruit and other sweet stuff growing, it makes sense. I’d cut a handful of rhubarb stalks, and rather than stew it up for brekkie oats, I couldn’t get the idea of pudding out of my mind (probably because a foray into my chest freezer revealed I had about four panettones stashed away). And because ginger pairs well with rhubarb, I soaked the fruity panettone slices in some ginger wine. Such extravagance!
Then one evening I wooed my lovely friends with jammy cheesecake cake. I'd really forgotten how good that is, which its moist plain base and just-rich-enough cheesecake and jam layer. It made enough for oohs and aahs on the night, and seconds to take home (which V had for breakfast the next day. Cake for breakfast — what a champion!).
And most recently I’ve been indulging myself with those dark fudgy spelt brownies (so much so that I forgot to take a picture this time around). Next on the wishlist is the speckled prettiness of currant-studded shrewsbury biscuits.
As a blogger, I probably should be trying new recipes all the time, so I’m writing about new things for you to read about. But in real life … I’m in the mood for the familiar and cosy, for enjoying those fondly-remembered flavours again (and not worrying if the new recipe will turn out!). However, because these forgotten stars are (shamefully) not on high rotation, it’s not ho-hum (and how could ginger-wine spiked pudding be ho-hum?!).
Like a comforting hug from your mum, or a laugh on a Friday night with friends, these kind of recipes serve a very important purpose in one’s life.