Wednesday, 6 April 2011


Last night I did a few things. I made myself dinner. I finished my portfolio (passed my review by the way). I marinaded chicken tikka. I made brownies.

Of everything I did last night, the brownies by far got the best reception. I was asked for the recipe, and have been by so many people I have decided to post it on the internet. Please make good brownies, and if yours suck, its not my fault.

Brownie Recipe (Courtesy of Edward Sanders):
300g caster sugar
6 eggs
350g butter
600g dark chocolate (Bournville is good)
200g plain flour
1 small(ish) glass Morgan's Spiced rum
150g hazelnuts/macadamia nuts
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 190C/gas mark 5 - if using a fan assisted oven, 180C

  1. Place about 2cm of boiling water into a saucepan, and place a large Pyrex bowl over the top. This is a double boiler. The boiling water should NOT touch the bottom of the bowl. Keep the water boiling on the hob.
  2. Break up the dark chocolate into bits (I just smack the sealed packet against the worksurface) and cut up the butter into chunks (helps it melt quicker). Place in the Pyrex bowl and melt, stirring occasionally.
  3. While the butter and chocolate melts, whisk together the eggs and the caster sugar in a large mixing bowl.
  4. When the butter and chocolate has melted, pick up the Pyrex bowl carefully (it will be hot, use a tea towel) and quickly add the hot chocolate mixture to the eggs and sugar, stirring as you add it. Make sure you stir as quickly as possible, as the heat in the chocolate could cause the eggs to scramble.
  5. Stir everything to combine, the mixture should thicken.
  6. Add the rummmm and stir again.
  7. Fold in the flour, cinnamon and the nuts.
  8. Place in lined trays, at about a 2cm depth and place in the oven.
  9. Now comes the important bit: bake at 190C for 10 minutes. This forms the crust on the top.
  10. Turn the oven down to 170C (fan assisted 150C), and bake for another 40 minutes. The brownies are done when you can insert a clean skewer/sharp knife tip and it comes out clean. If they aren't done, just leave them in the oven for another 5 minutes, and keep checking!
  11. Allow to cool, cut up and enjoy :)
The barbecue was a huge success today, lots of lovely food, some less lovely food (fucking bananas wrapped in bacon) and some great company. It was a great way to end the semester :)

I've had some blood tests done, my tiredness is starting to worry me - I've been tested for vitamin D deficiency, thyroid problems and anaemia. Watch this space.

Had a lovely bit of time with the girls recently - tea at Jo's last night, lunch in West Didsbury with Nanc at Folk.

169-171 Burton Road, West Didsbury
Although slightly pricier than the student hangouts I'm so used to (Scream bars, Spoons etc), Folk was a lovely change. The menu was healthy and definitely catered for all. Pies for the guys, salads for the ladies, sandwiches for the hungry, takeaways for the businessmen. 
We ventured inside to ask whether we could pay by card, to be greeted by possibly the friendliest waiter I've ever known. He offered us menus and said that he'd come to us when we were ready to order. We sat outside and when he came to take our order, he was very helpful and efficient. 
Nancy and I both had a mixed deli salad, each with additional meat - I had turkey, she had salami and chorizo. The salads were lovely - spinach, walnut, goat's cheese and dried cranberries, a bulghur wheat one, a mixed tomato and celery, roasted red peppers, olives and a gorgeous tzatziki. We had some lovely drinks, ginger beer and a fresh apple juice - none of the crappy stuff we're so used to. 
Overall, it came to £17 between two - so £8.50 each. The drinks were £2, so £6.50 for a pretty decent sized lunch. I really enjoyed it and can't wait to go back again.

Lesson 43: Nothing is better than good company.

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