Wednesday 7 July 2010

Shameless desperation in search of Green & Blacks chocolate hamper

Oh lordy. I’m not remotely a domestic goddess. I rather pride myself on resolutely not doing any cooking or cleaning whatsoever.  So, okay, here in the Bonkers House we all sneeze a lot and tend to wear black but I figure I’m doing my bit towards giving my child a healthy immune system. As a society we are now far too hygienic and it’s compromising our children’s health. Doubtless new research has smacked that on the head but, hey ho *whistles quietly* - it struck a chord with me.

Anyhow, the reason for this rambling is that English Mum, that shining sparkly star of radiant gorgeousness or whatever (hiss, spit) has thrown down the gauntlet with a blessed baking competition. Normally I would, of course, chuckle softly and mutter, ‘I spit on your scones’ but then I read on. The winner gets a hamper of Green and Blacks chocolate.

Not a few measly bars but a sodding great HAMPER.

Not any old crappy chocolate but Green and Blacks – uber chocolate. Chocolate so pure and lovely it doesn’t even contain calories or count towards a sugar rush.

Suddenly I found my inner Nigella barging her way out, unseemingly desperate to slap on a pinny and get hectic in the kitchen.

Now, regular readers might remember the last time I tried getting cosy with the cooker. English Mum was also to blame then and these were the result.

James ate one and I swear his pupils became so huge and black I had him drug-tested. I gave the rest away and got black looks for months afterwards from the good mothers of Dulverton.

So I tried something low-key. Something subtle and sophisticated. A Nigella recipe using G&B’s chocolate of course. Trouble was, I ate a bit more than I should have done so the quantities were a bit off. It also wouldn't come off the baking foil and looked a total disgrace.  But, ye Gods, it tasted like total heaven.

However, I figured I needed something with a little more WOW factor; something that didn’t look like a cow pat. So I thought I’d show you some of my sterling effects on James’ birthdays....

I may be a slummy mummy most of the year but I do pull my finger out for birthdays. There is usually a theme and I confess I would go over the top on occasions (the pirate party had me up until 3am making treasure caskets in lieu of party bags. Yeah, for five year olds - go figure). Anyhow, here are a few of my efforts (don’t look too closely – think exuberant effect rather than precision perfection.
This is the cute one....the dog asleep on the bed one (hmm, sounds familiar)...Yes, that is a pillow, not a chunk of icing I forgot to remove.

Here is the rugby one....complete with iced mud.  So, the figure looks a tad squashed but, hey, he'd just been tackled.

And the Bart Simpson one....yup, that was another serious case of mass poisoning by E-numbers.

And I really was rather proud of the one I did for the climbing wall party.  It's a mountain - geddit? - the ropes are strawberry laces and the figures are really commandos (guns are useful for sticking into icing). The jelly beans are boulders of course (and, ahem, very useful for covering the breaks in the icing).

Here is a gap. The Haunted Castle should be here but sadly Asbo got to it and ate the entire thing – plastic spiders, candles and all.

Soooo.....come on.... pretty please. 


English Mum said...

Shameless. Shameless.

I love them all, but particularly the rugby one. Inspired! So let me get this straight - you're entering ALL of them into the competition? x

DD's Diary said...

OMG, Jane, do you mind stuffing your inner Nigella right back in again, you are completely ruining my chances, and that hamper virtually has my name monogrammed on it *sniff*

Exmoorjane said...

EM: ummm, yup... didn't read any small print saying not (he he).

DD: sorry but she's unfettered now, her breasts are spilling womanfully over her tight-fitting DVF dress and her long locks are dangling in the food mixer...can't control the woman. Might even go for rhubarb polenta cake next.
Hey, I'll share (you can have any ginger ones - I don't like those!)

DD's Diary said...

Look at those lustrous locks swishing around! I don't like ginger either - but I'll have a big slice of rhubarb polenta please xx

Jon Storey said...

Brilliant cakes! God only knows what they taste like, why did Asbo only eat one? What did the Vet say?

However, for my money the chocolate splodge is the one for me. It looks delicious!

I have just read the other comments.

Bugger the cakes, sod Nigella. What about the unfettered breasts.......

Exmoorjane said...

DD: just picking bits of hair out of my teeth now...Why doesn't Nigella use a rubber band?

Glummy: ah, never say never. I felt sure my nuclear cupcakes might win something - award for most poisonous or something? But no...Nary an honourable mention. Anyhow, the ginger is still going spare if I could tempt you? :)

Exmoorjane said...

Jon - he looked like the snake that swallowed a pig... and, ahem (stuffs billowing breasts firmly back under control)... ;)

fairyhedgehog said...

For a Green & Black's hamper I'd do almost anything. If only I had pictures of my son's birthday cakes.

Not that I ever baked them. I assembled them from madeira cake and roll out icing so they probably wouldn't count anyway.

The puppy cake is gorgeous.

Are we supposed to vote for you or something?

Cait O'Connor said...

I am really impressed by your birthday cakes Jane, good luck with the competition!

Lara said...

the cakes all look fab!

I hid all my Nigella books at the back of the cupboard when they started to affect my waist line :o(

What do you mean it wasn't the books!?

Lara said...

English Mum, I notice you mention Whoopie pies on your page, I have tried to make them but they were a disaster!

Exmoorjane said...

fairy - oh, shame, I'd loved to have seen them. :(
No, no voting I fear - all in the paws of one judge.

Cait: thank you! If I win, I'll share, I promise ;)

GG: so you mean I can blame Nigella? Can I sue her??

Glummy: Ginger goes well with your name - they're all yours, should the pendulum swing this way...

fairyhedgehog said...

That's a shame because I'd definitely vote for the puppy cake. So cute!

Alison Cross said...

how could you do this to me? Gorgeous cakes and Green and Black's chocolate....and I'm stuck here in Glasgow with only a box of cereal and a stale tortilla to gnaw on until tomorrow.

Am now off to lick the screen, you evil woman!

Ali xx

Exmoorjane said...

Fairy - yeah, it was a rare pastel moment for me - that party was WAY less hyper!

Ali - get your tongue off my blog this minute! Hey, look at this way, I'm the fat frump and you'll be slim and gorgeous.

Irish Eyes said...

Omigod! That was a hoot! Reminds me of making train engines [steam style] out of chocolate swiss roll, melted chocolate poured all over it and the funnel from a mini swill roll; Supermum from six doors down smiled sweetly at me and cooed "I just love your christmas log"...and that birthday was YD and she was born in September. Lovely Jane, absolutely lovely!

Rob-bear said...

The finished products put the lie to the notion you are "not remotely a domestic goddess."

"I think the lady doth protest too much" comes to mind.

Faith said...

Good cakes Jane - are you entering the comp? You have to be in to win, but many moons ago I remember you moaning about weight, so maybe a huge hamper of G&B's wouldnt be such a good win in the long run! I have to admit I have a hankering for the old fashioned birthday cakes my mother used to make - iced victoria sponge but with buttercream filling and the birthday child chose the colour icing - pink or yellow usually! Take care. Miss you on PC. Fx

Sue said...

My husband LOVES to climb at a nearby climbing wall…I am going to attempt something like this! Thanks!
Congrats on your fabulous cake!