Grandma Abson's Traditional Baking is all about simple and tasty baking, a legacy from my Grandma's time as a cook-housekeeper in Edwardian times and a lifetime of baking.
As I was growing up, I watched her bake and cook, and acquired her expertise and passion for baking. Now I'm sharing Grandma Abson's traditional baking with baking devotees who remember it first time around and a whole generation new to baking. Enjoy!
This week’s Blog writer is Grandma Abson’s
great granddaughter, who is keeping up the family tradition of home
baking. She writes :
With the revival of home baking, it’s
becoming more popular to make rather than buy cakes. Our team at work has
followed suit and we have a regular ‘bake off’. Whilst it’s all in the
name of fun, the competitive ones amongst us take it very seriously. We
even have a spreadsheet to track the scores each person has been awarded. Each
participant is marked on taste, creativity and presentation. This week it was
my turn and I decided on Chocolate Brownies (after giving up on my quest to cut
out Chocolate for Lent after 2 days – whoops!). I used a recipe adapted from a
great book called ‘In the Mood for Food’ by Jo Pratt The
Brownies were just the thing to curb the Monday blues. Final scores are not yet
in but so far looking good! Here’s the quick and easy recipe.
Chocolate, Cherry and Walnut Brownies
200g dark chocolate(chopped)
3 large eggs
300g granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
125g plain flour
a pinch of salt
100g dried cherries
100g walnut pieces
Preheat the oven to 180ºC/fan 160ºC/gas 4.Grease and line a 20 x 30 cms
rectangular baking tin with greaseproof or parchment paper. Melt the butter and
chocolate either in a bowl over a pan of simmering water or gently in the
microwave. With an electric hand whisk, beat together the eggs, sugar and
vanilla extract until they are lovely and thick and creamy. Mix in the melted
chocolate and butter. Finally stir in the flour, salt, cherries and walnuts.
Pour into the baking tin and cook for about 25 minutes until the top is
cracking and the centre is just set. Leave to cool in the tin for about 20
minutes before cutting into squares. Serve warm or, if you can resist leaving
Substitute cranberries and pecans or apricots and
Add 2 tablespoonfuls apricot or raspberry jam to
the mixture in the tin and swirl it round before putting in the oven to
Add white and milk chocolate chunks to the
mixture if you are a hard core chocoholic.
If you prefer plain Brownies or are allergic to
nuts, just leave out the fruit and nuts.
Meryl says : Make sure you don’t overcook them.
Grandma Abson would have used a cake skewer to test if they are ready. But this
time, rather than coming out clean as when testing cakes, the skewer should
have a gooey mixture attached to it. Brownies should be firm to the touch
but still a bit like the texture of fudge. They will set once they are
cool. Chocolate Brownies will keep for about 3 or 4 days but it would be
amazing if you still had any left by then! And finally ...thanks to this week’s