Hello my lovelies! How have you all been? I hope you are reading this in your inbox because it’s been so long since I last wrote anything, I’m not sure if my post was even sent out! It’s a bit rusty from the under use. This post was written right after Thanksgiving but as you can see, it’s been languishing in my drafts for over 10 days now. I’m going to go ahead and just post it, even though Thanksgiving is old news.
So, how was everyone’s Thanksgiving? Well, by everyone, I mean all the Americans. We had a very wonderful and quiet one. This year we opted out of the friendsgiving. My husband was off for four days and so were the older girls who work for a daycare/school. The children didn’t want me to host and they didn’t want to go anywhere, but of course, they wanted me to cook. And here I was thinking I’d escaped the cooking. No such luck. They all handed in their food requests: creamed corn, sweet potato casserole, cauliflower and broccoli casserole, pumpkin pie, and pecan tart. We didn’t do a turkey because we’re not huge fans so I roasted little Cornish hens, one for the each of us.
The snow fell outside all day Thursday. It was a lazy sort of snow fall, it wasn’t in a hurry, it took its time drifting merrily down from the frosty skies. It echoed the mood of the house, where we lazily shuffled about in our fuzzy slippers and socks, furry hoodies and jumpers. We lit a roaring fire and listened to the crackly sounds of fire wood; splitting and burning, fill the family room. The warm glow of the fire and family, spread over our faces, bodies and hearts. It was just a lovely day.
I had prepped much of the food the day before and all that was needed was a quick few minutes to bake off the casseroles. It took 30 minutes to stuff and prep the Cornish hens and then they were placed in the oven. In the meantime, the children enjoyed doing their thing and my husband and I spent all day watching football. We snacked on spring rolls and satsumas and sipped mulled apple cider in between yelling at the TV screen for some ridiculous referee call or play.
Those four days off sure went by in a blur but they were the best four days of the year. It is so nice to have to do nothing and to have special people to do nothing with. Two of my daughters have birthdays back to back around Thanksgiving break, so two of the days were celebratory with special breakfast one day and dinner the next. Present buying and giving, and of course, a bit of Black Friday deal shopping was also done.
I was going to post before Thanksgiving but I really have enjoyed doing nothing. I decided that I’d wait to get through the holiday and then try and get back into the groove of posting regularly and visiting my friends who I have sorely neglected. I have come to the conclusion that cooking for a living and then turning around and writing a good, food blog is quite difficult. I have 4 weeks to get some sort of plan in place before my work stuff starts again. I’m hoping to find a balance, and some time to do what I do but still post regularly with some good content and not be tired of the whole cooking and baking thing!
How has everyone been? I have visited some of my blog friends and am making my rounds and hope to get to all of you very soon.
My second week off from work, I ventured into the kitchen. My mind was beginning to churn out a few ideas and once I was in the mood to get knee high in flour, I jotted down a few ideas and armed with my trusty pink notebook, iPad and wooden spoon, I got to work.
There are a few Madeleine recipes on my blog; it’s because I adore them. I love how they’re easy to make, I love their beautiful scalloped shape, their versatility and how they make everything look fancy.
These are chocolate ones with a floral under note from lavender. Lavender and chocolate go really well together and how much you want to add is up to you. I didn’t want to confuse them with bars of soap! I used some fresh lavender from my little pot on my porch and a tad bit of dried. The White chocolate glaze with a few sprinkles of dried lavender leaves adds the perfect little floral punch as you daintily nibble them.
These are perfect for your holiday table because they instantly add a touch of sophistication. They are also great for a Valentine’s Day or Mother’s Day breakfast or brunch. Like I said, versatile.
- 1 cup/145g all purpose/plain flour
- ¼ cup cocoa powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs
- ⅔ cups sugar
- 1 teaspoon fresh lavender leaves
- ½ teaspoon dried lavender leaves
- 2 tablespoons cold coffee or milk
- ½ cup/115g butter, melted and cooled
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- White Chocolate Glaze
- ½ cup white chocolate chips
- drop of coconut oil
- dried lavender leaves for sprinkling
- Mix the flour, salt and cocoa powder together in a bowl.
- In the bowl of a mixer, beat the eggs and sugar together.
- Add the lavender leaves and dried lavender.
- Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture and mix well.
- Add the milk or coffee and mix.
- Add the vanilla.
- Mix thoroughly and then slowly drizzle in the cool, melted butter.
- The batter will be soft and will need to be chilled for easier scooping.
- Chilling also helps develop the characteristic hump of the madeleine and is a necessary step.
- Chill the batter for at least an hour.
- I've made madeleine batter the night before and is very convenient to have it ready to go in the morning.
- When you are ready to bake, grease and flour your madeleine pans.
- Preheat your oven to 375℉/190℃ (Convection fan baking 350F/180C)
- Scoop a tablespoon of batter into each scalloped mould.
- This recipe should yield 24 madeleines and it's easier to have two pans.
- Bake for 15 minutes.
- Check at 10 minutes and then add minutes from there.
- They can burn easily if you don't keep an eye on them.
- Mine were ready in about 13 minutes.
- Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes and them prise them out gently with a knife.
- Cool on a rack and make the glaze.
- Melt the white chocolate chips in a small bowl with a drop of coconut oil.
- I use the microwave; 30 seconds at a time and mixing between the 30 seconds.
- Usually it takes about a minute to melt the white chocolate.
- Once melted and cooled slightly, dip the madeleine, or spread the white chocolate with a spoon and sprinkle he dried lavender leaves.
I hope everyone is enjoying the holiday season. It definitely feels like the holidays here in Coloardo. The weather has been beautifully chilly and the snow has dusted everything like a gingerbread village. I know snow and cold weather is not for everyone and even though it can really stop me in the tracks especially with my joints, I absolutely love this weather. I am the happiest when there’s snow falling softly outside, and the oven is on baking up warm and gooey delights, filling the house with the aromas of sweet spices.
What’s going on in your neck of the woods?