We are well into the 9th month of the year, most know as September. For the companies, business entities and employees, it’s the last month of the third quarter. A month they make haste to achieve Q3 goals. To some families it’s a month of mixed views. To children it’s a month they return from the holidays and prepare to face their studies as students. For the parents it’s time to dip hands into their pockets in order to make an investment into their child’s education and future.
Times are hard, especially in this recession. Most face increased stress at work with the addition of the uncertainty of their employment. Business owners face the issue of foreign exchange, reduce in spending power amongst other factors affecting their business. It’s true the instability of the economy can be a big burden to carry in our daily lives, but in every desert there’s an oasis. A place or time you forget your worries and allow your heart and mind be filled with joy. In these trying times, the home can be the greatest oasis. The time spent with the family is something worth more than gold and diamonds. That moment when a parent looks into their child’s eyes or sees a child playing around innocently, gives that feeling of nostalgia. A feeling and memory of when they were young, innocent and with no worry at all. When a child looks into the eyes of the parent and sees the unconditional love that fuels the hard work and endurance to provide for them daily. The time spent as a family creates priceless and long lasting memories, we re- visit time and time again.
What we eat plays a major role in those family memories. It can either make it bitter or sweet. Truly over-seasoned meat can create a bad memory. Sometimes food has a way of enhancing those memories. Like the joy and cheers when a child is rewarded with their favourite snack. Or even the stampede to the dinner table, at the knowledge of food being ready and about to be served. We all have lovely memories from the Easter and Christmas meals. Some memories from the birthday meals. Food has a way of triggering such flashbacks. It has its way of taking you back into time. Reminding you of that hot Sunday rice and stew you share with the rest of the family when you were younger. The jollof rice you share during a family gathering. Food has its way of giving sweet memories of those times with loved ones past and present and lives you with that smile to take you away from these hard times.
Some families might be spending their last time together before the next school break or holiday. For some this weekend will be another weekend to spend time together and build memories. Why not try to build that with a nice family meal together, spiced up with some joy and laughter. We at Culinary Tower have recommended a dessert to aide in achieving this. Eat well and live well!
1 cup (170 grams) semisweet chocolate chips 1 1/2 sticks (170 grams) unsalted butter, cut into pieces 4 ounces (113 grams) unsweetened chocolate, chopped 1 1/4 cups (245 grams) granulated sugar
1/2 cup (150 grams) Nutella3 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup (3.4 ounces) all-purpose flour
1/4 cup unsweetened (25 grams) cocoa powder
1/4 cup of crushed choco-milo
Pre-heat oven to 350°F.
combine the chocolate chips, butter,
and unsweetened chocolate in a large microwaveable bowl.
Heat in the microwave for 1 minute then stir. Continue heating in 30-second bursts, stirring between each burst, until the mixture is melted and smooth but not scorched.
Remove from the microwave and let cool slightly.
Stir in the Nutella in a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the eggs and sugar on medium-high speed until light and thick, about 3 minutes.
Beat in the vanilla extract.
Stir in the cooled chocolate mixture with a rubber spatula.
Add the flour, chocomilo, cocoa powder, and salt, folding gently until combined.
Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan. Bake until a tester(knife) comes out with moist crumbs still attached.
Baking time is 35 to 40mins.
Note: Do not overbake, you want to err on the side of underbaking.
Let cool to room temperature.
You can either serve at room temperature, warmed, or chilled.