There are very few days that cannot be salvaged with a generous serving of grilled cheese on toast and a cup of tea – preferably consumed in bed.
I realise statements like these catalyse nutritional authorities to lunge for their soap boxes, but I’m certain physicians of the psyche would applaud the mental payoffs gained from a good crunch of toasted cheese and an absorbing read.
Be it bitter weather, late arrival or hectic schedule, there are times where no straight thinking soul would consider assembling pots, pans and utensils. These are the junctures in life when a knife and a plate is all that is needed to see one happily sated. Feed this to tired children, antsy teenagers or to a drop-ins-for-coffee and witness storm clouds transform to rainbows.
With the encyclopedic range of cheeses and breads at our disposal, this delicious snack/meal can be as sophisticated or restrained as you like. In typical P and S fashion, mine comprises crusty white and tasty. With grill set on high, the kettle boiling and the anticipation of quality time spent with some engaging text, what hours ago seemed like an insurmountable day, suddenly appears golden.
Postscript: and of course a little bit of Instagram to garnish.
If you are ever unsure of the whereabouts of family members, you can guarantee that the wafts of warm chocolately baking emitting from an oven of brownies will unearth them from locations near and far.
As if by sorcery, individuals within close proximity, who 15 minutes previously, could not hear you when you called for assistance with dish washing, suddenly appear in the kitchen with an interest to assist. Even those, riding bikes, at remote parts of the property, are lured in by the heady aroma of baked chocolate. No one is disappointed.
Taking inspiration from Frugal Feeding, who ingeniously added blueberries to his latest batch, I was prompted to defrost my much-loved raspberries and turn out yet another version of this irresistible treat – raspberry brownies. To ‘rattle out’ your own tray, follow this recipe (which is basically a brownie that I have made many times, with the addition of 150g of raspberries). If you have your own trusty standby, use it and add the same quantity of berries.
200g dark chocolate
3 eggs, lightly beaten
175g brown sugar
75g plain flour
150g raspberries (if using frozen, thaw them well)
- Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius. Grease and line a 20cm square pan with baking paper or you can use a rectangular pan of similar dimensions.
- Melt chocolate and butter in a saucepan over low heat until smooth. Cool for 5 minutes.
- In a mixing bowl, combine eggs, sugar and sifted flour. Mix well.
- Fold in the chocolate mixture and then stir through the raspberries.
- Pour into prepared pan and bake for 30-35 mins. Check earlier as all ovens cook at different speeds!
- Cool in the pan before cutting into approximately 12 squares. Delicious served just warm.
The more patient individuals in this household were able to enjoy their brownies for dessert, accompanied by vanilla ice-cream – in a bowl. Others gorged themselves straight from the cooling tray…
Postscript: I can’t help thinking, that Darby and Joan would have been much happier by their fireplace if they too could share in a piece of this brownie.