I wrote a post yesterday. It was full of pictures, fascinating anecdotes (of course) and a recipe. It had it all. I published it, the little bar moved along until it reached 100 %. All good. Then the post disappeared. There is no trace of it anywhere. Gutted. I have no idea what happened but I have still not got over it.
Today I am going to try again. If it fails, I shall cry.
On a brighter note, this post is coming to you live from the English Riviera. As hubby has a long weekend we packed our bags and cashed in our Tesco tokens before setting out on the long drive to South Devon.
We broke up our journey with a delicious car picnic of crusty bread, cheese, antipasto, juicy tomatoes and caramelised onion chutney. Yum yum. I was particularly impressed with hubby’s cheese selection: an amazingly creamy Mustard Cheddar and a semi-soft French cheese, Petit Reblochon.
The Little Man was trying out his new forward facing car seat. As he had been getting somewhat squished in his baby seat he seemed to enjoy the space and the opportunity to look around. It made him much more part of the journey as he was able to look at us and chatter away merrily. So sweet.
By late afternoon we reached the seaside. Rather wet and windy, I cannot believe how early darkness falls now the clocks have gone back. Dreary as the weather was the view was far from dismal. The photo above is of Babbacombe, which looked so inviting with its twinkling lights and ferris wheel. (Ed. It is actually Torquay in the picture and Babbacombe is round the corner. Ah well!) And you see that wall? Behind that is The Sea! I cannot wait to go and explore tomorrow. On the drive down I also spied a pier in Paignton and I do love a good pier!
Of course, we have been out and about today but I have not planned my recount of those adventures yet. Instead I need to share what I wrote about yesterday because otherwise I shall not sleep!
So, in other news. Wednesday was an exciting day for our family, not just because it was Halloween! We celebrated both my mom and my aunt’s 60th birthdays yet (yes, they are twins) and also my sister’s birthday. To mark this auspicious occasion we took my mom out to a fancy hotel for dinner – The Fairlawns.
The meal began with a complimentary amuse-bouche, pumpkin in honour of the season, which added an elegance to the proceedings. Maybe I’m just easily pleased but I feel that any meal gets off to a good start when you are offered teeny-tiny cups of soup to ‘cleanse the palate’. Anyway, the pate (cannot do accents on here) and duck did not fail to impress.
We ended our meal with birthday cake. Coffee and Walnut Cake with Chocolate and Coffee Buttercream and it was delicious, even if I do say so myself!
The cake was made using Delia Smith’s fail-safe all-in-one method. This recipe makes two 20 cm/8 inch sponges.
In a mixer place:
6 oz/175 g self-raising flour
6 oz/175 g caster sugar
6 oz/175 g softened butter
1 heaped tsp baking powder
1 tbsp coffee granules dissolved in 1 tbsp hot water
Mix until smooth but do not over whisk.
Stir in 2 oz/55 g crushed walnuts.
Split the batter between two lined and greased tins.
Bake for 30 minutes until the sponge is firm.
*Remember* Do not open the oven until the time is up or your sponge may sink.
For the topping, beat 8 oz/225 g icing sugar and 2 tbsp cocoa powder with 4 oz/110 g softened butter and 1 tbsp coffee granules dissolved in 1 tbsp hot water.
Use 1/3 of the mixture to sandwich the sponges together then use the rest to cover the outside of the cake.
I really hope this post has not lost too much from being ‘retold’! I shall be back soon to share some highlights from the English Riviera. xxxx
Edited to add the eggs – thank you to a lovely friend for pointing out my omission!