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Wonderful website and brilliant book! Both have provided a lot of amusement and helped spark the creation of the attached winking biscuit smiley.
This original mark one winking biscuit smiley used Cadbury Fingers with Peanut Cookies. I hope to create the mark two version in the future using Jammie Dodgers for the eyes and possibly the Rich Tea Finger Creams for the head. I believe the Mark one fails to hit the spot totally, in that it uses a cookie rather than being a true all biscuit smiley. Chocolate fingers also prove to be a difficult medium to work with, due to the tackiness of the chocolate not mixing well with camera equipment. Pre-cooling of the chocolate fingers in the fridge, for several hours prior to commencing photography, did reduce the goo element to some extent though.
Would be honoured if attached e-mail / smiley appeared on your excellent website.
|Nicey replies: Phil,
I think you have got a bit of a crop circle thing going on there. Perhaps you have a lay line running through your table.
The Jaffa cake story prompted my colleagues to nag me to tell you about my biscuit cakes.
It all started shortly after I first met the man who was to become my better half. He introduced me to his mother's dinner party 'cheat' dessert from the 70s.
All you need is a pot of whipping cream, a packet of ginger nuts and a glass of sherry. You need to prepare everything the night before. Whip the cream until it's nice and thick. Put the sherry in a shallow bowl. Open the packet of ginger nuts and dip each one (both sides) in the sherry. As you finish each one you need to reassemble them into the cylindrical shape they were in in the packet on a serving dish. This is the only tricky bit. Once your roll of biscuits is complete cover the whole thing with the cream and leave in the fridge overnight. (You could sprinkle it with grated chocolate, nuts or whatever takes your fancy, too.) When you finally get around to cutting up the cake all the biscuits will have fused into one wonderful log. Everyone will ask for the recipe.
I've tried many variations of this over the years. The most popular uses chocolate chip cookies and orange liqueur (replace with orange juice for small people). You could even use chocolate mousse instead of the cream.
My personal favourite is to dip shortbread fingers in whisky and assemble them in two rectangular layers with raspberries sandwiched in the middle. Cover with the cream and decorate with more raspberries and grated dark chocolate, The only hard part is making sure that you get the biscuits soggy enough. Yum!
|Nicey replies: That does sound excellently 70's. Its put me in the mood for a Vesta Beef Curry and Surprise Dried Peas.|
||In a survey conducted by Community Service Volunteers and reported on the BBC website magazine, it was reported that 79% of over-65s’ tea breaks take up more than an hour a week – I’d hope so too!|
We should all aim for this, I’d say. In fact 1 h seems too short for a week’s worth of tea-breaks. For instance the government insists its employees have two 15 min breaks a day don’t they? I seem to remember this from filling in time sheets when working in a hospital lab – ‘allow an hour for lunch and 15 mins each for morning and afternoon break’. That’s 2.5 hours just during the working week!
Celebrity life coach Gladeana McMahon suggested that people spend who spend a lot of time drinking tea could use that time to help others by organizing community tea parties around their personal tea breaks. Hurrah!
I would like to propose a fifth method of eating Jaffa Cakes which, like all great scientific breakthroughs, is the product of an accident. I purchased a 15 capacity cardboard tube of Jaffas for energy sustenance during a sporting event, but unfortunately the Jaffas all melted together in the heat. Although it was initially quite difficult to winkle out the congealed Jaffas, eventually I was rewarded with a double decker effect of in some cases, four Jaffas stuck together. It probably added an extra 10 minutes to my triathlon time, but was well worth it for the resultant delicious Jaffa gateaux. I now recreate the effect in my office by leaving the tube next to my window. As a production method this technique produces a variable number of decks, but I think this just adds to the excitement of it all. Eating anything more than a six decker is just unnecessary showing off
||Dear Nicey & Wifey,|
I've made a rather stunning discovery this morning. I'm sitting here with a cup of tea and a packet of… wait for it... 24 Tesco Value Jaffa Cakes. Now that in itself is a disturbing paradox for any biscuit lover. How can you combine the concept of no frills with an indisputable champion amongst biscuits/cakes/whatever they are? It would be like Stelios announcing a new low-cost limousine franchise called EasyRolls. In my defence I should point out that the comestibles in question were left over from a 5th birthday party at the weekend, and I'm sure any of your readers can forgive that. Five year olds wouldn't recognise a quality biscuit if it bit them on the a**e. It's all about volume at that age.
Anyway, I digress. The point is: they're really quite good. There's the same key non-standard issue as any shop-brand Jaffa Cakes (slightly brittle base rather than the cakey spongeyness of the real thing), but other than that, they're sound. I've conducted my study in all the standard ways:
- Entire JC inserted into mouth in one go.
- JC bitten clean through the middle and consumed in two halves.
- JC bent down at the edges so the chocolate erupts to reveal bulging, gleaming orangy bit, then all three components broken apart and eaten separately.
- Edges bitten off all round, then remaining chocolate disk removed with fingernails and consumed, then remaining sponge/orange tartlet placed on tongue until sponge disintegrates, then orangy bit sucked until it dissolves.
After all that I still think I would struggle to tell the difference between them and Tesco premium Jaffa Cakes… apart from (pats back pocket of jeans in pound-saving style) when I look in my wallet. Say what you like about Tesco, they obviously know how to produce fine quality own-brand imitations at a very reasonable price.
|Nicey replies: Mark,
Thanks for that round up of Jaffa eating techniques I feel a poll coming on.