Monday, October 16, 2006

Fifteen Brownies!

The title of this recipe makes me think of fifteen little girls clad in unfetching brown dresses and bobble hats, with their untrendy brown purses clipped to a belt that hoiked the dress up from definitively sad to borderline acceptable. Well that was how I looked when I was a Brownie, a million years ago (or so it seems). Now they get to wear trousers and sweatshirts, and they probably don't have to do a House Orderly badge that involved becoming a household slave for a week (or getting your mum to cheat when she signed off what you had done) or a Hostess badge that involved making cups of tea and rounds of toast. I was a terrible Brownie. I was not even vaguely house-orderly; I didn't drink tea, and I'm not sure I even knew how it was made. I couldn't cook to save my life and I didn't care - I was a pre-teen career woman, or else a book worm, but one thing I certainly was not was interested in cooking, much less baking. I would rather have had a McVities half-coated milk chocolate digestive than a home-cooked brownie and while my grandmother baked in the kitchen, and my brother (not interested in cooking either, but desperate to please) followed her slavishly, I was probably elsewhere, reading.


Anyway. Somewhere along the line I changed, although I am not sure why or how. And now I love cooking, and I find baking more therapeutic than cooking, although I cook more than I bake because it is more suiting to our life-style. One favourite of mine is Nigella's snowflake brownies, from Feast, which have white chocolate in them. They are truly divine. So I was interested to see if Jamie's could rival Nigella's. They aren't that different. Eggs, flour, butter, sugar, cocoa, chocolate - all brownie staples. Nigella puts white chocolate buttons in hers; Jamie suggests dried fruit and nuts in his. I went for macadamia nuts and dried cranberries, partly because they came in a handy sized mixed pack and partly because his alternatives -pecans and walnuts - I have put in other brownies, but I haven't previously tried with macadamias. I should note that in his live webcast to the world last week, Jamie tried to pretend that the inclusion of nuts and fruit in his brownies makes them healthy/healthier. Hmm. Nice one Jamie, but I'm not sure the government expect us to get our five a day through chocolate brownies, however many cranberries they might contain. In any case, Jamie doesn't need to bill these brownies as healthy because they are delicious - tasty is as good as healthy anyday. And today they did serve a noble healthy-ish purpose- they revived me with a blast of cocoa and sugar after a tedious morning at work. Which has to be a good thing.

10 comments:

TheGrem said...

Your brother sounds like a top bloke.

julie said...

Kathryn, thanks for being our guinea pig! I was lusting after those brownies and now I know how they really look....divine!

julie said...

I bet the Grem is your brother...mine love to praise himself under a false name in my comments too, ah ah!

Kathryn said...

Haha Julie - he IS my brother. That's really funny.

He hasn't given himself a particularly flattering name, I must say!

Oh and the brownies are very good indeed... and v different from Nigella's...

TheGrem said...

Julie, your brother also sounds like a top bloke....

Maria said...

Kathryn,
I just wanted to tell you how much I enjoy your blog; I'm awaiting my copy of this book and your cooking is such a nice "preview" :-)
Your brownies look delicious btw!

julie said...

LOL, Grem you sound great too!

Kathryn said...

Thank you Maria. Your pictures are always inspiring, so your comment means a lot. I hope you will like the book when it arrives! I am enjoying cooking from it a lot. It is a big book though... it will take some time...
The honeycomb cannelloni looks stunning, but I don't have an appropriately sized ovenproof dish (excuse to go shopping!...)

Kathryn

Anonymous said...

hi kathryn, i really enjoy reading your blog.. PLEASE keep up the great work & keep inspire me ^^ {simplicity}

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