The cake that helped me write a book…

I don’t think many people really know how sweet my tooth is. Well, maybe Shea Mcleod does, as you’ll see on Sept 7th on her blog.

But I crave sweet stuff. If I go out, I look at the dessert menu first and then order small, ‘lite’ pre-cursers. I cook to stop the family from starving, but I truly ‘cook’ when I make sweet stuff. A terrible admission in these days of sugar overload. Actually, when the terrible January 2011summer storms wiped out the Queensland (Australia) sugar harvest, I, along with many others, stockpiled sugar in the pantry.

Writing is such a sedentary occupation. You sit… and sit… and sit, and sit. To compensate, I walk a lot with my dogs and have taken to running as well. Which sort of makes up for the sitting and the fact that invariably I’ll trot into the kitchen mid para, and make a cake. The smell as it’s cooking is a muse in its own right and I get to lick the dish!

So if Helen of Troy’s face launched a thousand ships, my cake recipe launched A Thousand Glass Flowers. One hundred and three thousand words! Take that, Helen!

What is this miracle cake recipe, you ask?

It’s called Raspberry and White Chocolate Brownie and here’s how it goes:

150 gr of butter

200 gr of best quality dark chocolate

1 cup (220gr) of caster sugar

2teaspoons vanilla extract

3 eggs beaten lightly

½ cup (75 gr) Self-raising flour

½ cup (75 gr) plain flour

100 gr white chocbits

150 gr frozen raspberries.

Preheat oven to 180 or 160 fan-forced. Line a slab tin with baking paper.

Melt butter and chocolate over water.

Stir in sugar, vanilla, then beaten eggs, sifted flours, white choc and raspberries.

Spread into pan and bake for 35 mins or until just firm. Cool in pan.

Cut into squares. (suitable to freeze)

Now me being me, I never ever do anything as instructed. So I beat the eggs and sugar together before adding. I never sift the flour. Too slow. I add dark chocbits as well as the others for more intensity. And I use whatever berries I have frozen from our garden in the summer: loganberries, mulberries, bluberries… you name it. And today, because I have few frozen berries left and want to keep them for other sinful desserts, I went to the pantry and pulled out a jar of homemade cherry plum jam (slightly tart: divine!) and tipped four heaped tablespoons of that in.

It’s all in the oven now and the smell? Oh my goodness, I can feel another chapter of Gisborne coming on!

A Thousand Glass Flowers will be available for Kindle by 1st September (rrp:$2.99) and available as a print book later in the year.