23 Jan 2008

Our first official visitor

We have been living in our flat in south London for three months this weekend, and my little brother was our first official visitor who didn’t have to sleep in the lounge on the floor.

With spring a long way off, a kitchen with just a little more surface space than the last, and my newly purchased food processor, I have recently developed a desire to bake. I am not sure if this is something to do with my age or whether it' a phase all new home owners go though, helping to turn a newly purchased flat into a home with the aromas of home baking and coffee. Certainly my best friend turned into a baking demon on completion of her flat, making pistachio macaroons, quiches and cakes for lunch on our first visit. In all honesty, I think I have to admit though that it’s largely attributed to the shortage of delicious gluten free sweetness.

With the excuse of my brother coming to visit, and wanting to comfort him with homemade food, I chose to knock up some chocolate cherry brownies using my current favourite ingredient in the fridge left over from New Year - cherries in kirsch. Even though my new kitchen has much more surface space than at the last flat, I still managed to go against my Home Economics teachers' mantra of "clear as you go". This is only because I was trying to multi task, also making a shepherd’s pie for supper.

Honestly Miss, I am normally much tidier.

I used the Darina Allen GF brownie as a guide recipe, replacing the walnuts for the cherries, whilst adding an extra tablespoon or so of ground almonds to compensate for the liquid in the cherries. They turned out well, despite not having the correct sized tin, and went down a treat with a mug of steaming tea mid Saturday afternoon - the perfect time for cake. They went down even better when we were out walking along the Southbank on Sunday afternoon, before introducing my brother to the world of art through Tate Modern. The flavour of the cherries wa much more pronounced and the chocolate seemed stronger, but it could have been the bracing cold air on that blue sky winter day that just heighten our tastes all the more. Maybe next time we should wait a day for the better flavoured brownies. But then again, who can resist brownies fresh out of the oven?

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