Where have the past two months gone? No blog through the whole of September! It isn't as though I haven't been up to anything, in fact it's very much the opposite, so there is alot to catch up on.
Last night was the final of the Great British Bake Off, and I think this series I have been more inspired than any other. In the first few weeks of the programme I decided to give the challenge of the episode a go myself, so I tried to make a swiss roll (disaster) and florentines (far more successful). The latter involved the technique of tempering chocolate which was completely new to me, so I got onto YouTube and found a video which didn't involve a cooking thermometer. It's all quite scientific but the lady explains the science of the chocolate crystals - yup, I had no idea either! The long and short of it is you melt the chocolate and then lower the temperature back down so that the gloopy goodness will harden nice and shiny almost immediately after it has been spread, piped or shaped. I used the tempered chocolate to coat the backs of the delicious florentines, and I poured the left overs into muffin moulds to create chocolate cups to eat ice cream out of. For Dan's birthday cake I spread the tempered chocolate onto a baking sheet and cut out triangles to make bunting, alongside another new chocolate creation, chocolate ganache. For that, here is a great recipe.
All in all it's been a pretty chocolatey time but I feel I have added a new skill to my repertoire - the whole point of a challenge a month I suppose!
Looking back: in January I started to learn to swing.