We went to a friends house for dinner the other night and I offered to make the dessert, by coincidence Simon’s mum had squirrelled away the 1980’s Readers Digest Book of Creative Cooking and Entertaining for me. It’s fantastic, it has hugely complicated recipes and long instruction lists of how to make food look impressive (it would be perfect for ‘Come Dine with Me’), whole sections on things like Picnics and Morning Coffee as well as buying guides for cheese and wine, it also has hilarious tips such as ‘you can buy tortillas from some delicatessens’.
This is a good illustration of what you can expect next time you come over for dinner:
However, what Simon got excited about was the chocolate tempering. We decided to make a Nigella chocolate cake which he would decorate with chocolate curls and chocolate leaves. It didn’t go exactly to plan. Suffice to say there are no photos.
So whilst he was messing about with the leaves I found the section on chocolate in The French Kitchen by Joanne Harris and it showed the most beautiful little chocolate mendiants. Perfect to have with after dinner coffee. You just drizzle a little circle of the melted chocolate onto a marble block and top with candied fruit and nuts, they look so pretty and are really easy to make. I’ll definitely be doing this again.