Today I attended the penultimate session of our course at the cancer information and support centre at the hospital, and as usual it was excellent. You can read full details here.
Yesterday I did some more baking so I could take some goodies in for us all to share during our tea break. I still had some almond slices left, and I made a fresh batch of chocolate chip cookies, and in addition I also made a lemon drizzle cake and some coconut macaroons filled with chocolate ganache. I got the idea for these from my new “Bake Off – Creme de la Creme” book which I bought after the TV series of the same name came to an end.
The lemon drizzle cake. I made a rectangular one using my new adjustable baking frame, and then cut it up into squares.
The coconut macaroons and chocolate chip cookies.
A selection on one of the cake plates from my beautiful new tea service.
I was particularly pleased that the lemon drizzle cake worked so well, and it has a wonderful combination of sweet and tart in a single mouthful, and a delicious crunchy texture on the top.
Everybody was bowled over by the macaroons, and this afternoon was the first time I had sampled one – I was very disciplined with myself last night after I’d finished them – partly because it as a diet day and partly because if I once started tasting them, there would probably be none left for our meeting today!
I had never made these before, and neither had I ever made ganache. It is basically a mixture of cream and dark chocolate and it’s the most delicious icing I’ve ever tasted, I think!
This morning I did some research into the origins of ganache, and rumour has it that in the 19th century, an apprentice to a chef accidentally spilt some cream into the chocolate that the chef was carefully melting, and ganache was born. According to the website, the word “ganache” in French means “a fool” – the chef accused his apprentice of being a fool, and then realised just how good the ganache was, and the name stuck.
You live and learn.
On the way back, I accompanied another member of our group as she wanted to do a bit of shopping, and she showed me where the various bus stops were. Last time I came home from the Lodge by bus, I ended up changing twice. This way, I only need the single change, even if the journey does take twice as long, meandering in and out around the town! We discovered we have loads in common and had a lovely talk, which continued after we got out, until we thought we should go home and rescue our hubbies who must be worrying about us. Mine certainly had been, and had taken himself off to look for me, thinking I’d either had an accident, or another heart attack, etc. Later he apologised to me for being silly but I said he certainly hadn’t been silly – I was touched that he was so worried about me, and feeling a bit guilty that I’d put him through that, when I had been out having a good time!
While we waited to cross the road to go shopping, I heard my voice being called from the other side of the street, and there was one of the members of the Allerton Three! She was walking her dog. She crossed over and I was able to introduce her to my new friend, and we had a lovely chat.
So I managed to make new friends, and meet up with an old friend, too.
I love going on the bus – there are always nice people to chat with. I have to sit at the front with my back against the fold-away seat, in a space reserved for a wheelchair, so I’m facing everybody. It does make it a bit difficult to see my stop, so I always ask the driver to stop there as I get on the bus. Today I met a delightful old gentleman, who had a rollator walker, and tied on along the front were lots of little teddies! He said he’d been collecting them for some time. I said I wished my hubby could see them as he’s very keen on teddies, too!
A really great day, made all the more special for the joy I was able to bring to the group with my home baking.