Wednesday, 19 March 2014


Remember the disappointment of smashing open that chocolate egg on Easter morning only to find it was a hollow sham of a confection, mocking you with its vacant stare?

Well here is the remedy: an egg so full of mass, it has its own gravitational pull. 
Hand-made to our specification in a little factory in the Midlands, the thickness of the chocolate is vulgar, and the filling is ridiculous.

We made these first in 2012 as a response to the lingering disappointment as children. Don't get me wrong - our parents were generous with the egg action, but the air inside them was always a terrible let-down. They're back for 2014.

These eggs are NOT 'nut-safe' or nut free, but they are entirely suitable for greedy vegans as they are dairy free. They’e also completely fine for coeliacs as they’re gluten-free. How fabulous!

We make three different egg styles:

 Solid Chocolate
- a chocolate shell filled with chocolate. Obviously. A disgusting 331g net weight. The chocolate, by the way, is none of your milky-tasting barely-there-on-the-cocoa stuff - this is a unique recipe, good and dark without the negative connotations sometimes attached (not by us we hasten to add) to the word 'dark'.

5% Praline
- a chocolate shell filled with the finest hazelnut praline blended with 5% liquid chocolate. The most obese of our eggs, it weighs a whopping 334g. Sweet - you couldn't eat too much at once!
10% Praline
- the same chocolate shell filled with the same hazelnut praline, but blended with 10% liquid chocolate - a guilty 320g, and a slightly more grown-up taste, though perfectly good for tiny palates as well.
If you know anything about chocolatiering, you’ll know that the cheaper the praline, the higher the chocolate content. Praline is very sweet by itself, and ours is as close to pure as you can get without your teeth falling out. We experimented with different levels of choc + praline, till we found the right balance. You won't be able to walk along biting into those - we suggest apron or bib, spoon and patience. 

Scroll down to see shots of the emerging eggs in the factory!

They can be bought from while stocks last.

Friday, 3 January 2014

Houmous: Food of The Gods.

I made houmous once before from a kit, and you wouldn't render your walls with it. That's all I'm going to say about that.

But I resolved one day to try my own. I did, last night. Here is my made-up recipe WHICH WORKED.

Regarding the ingredients, these are the rules:
- The amount of chickpeas and tahini is set.
- You can add more olive oil if you like, but I wouldn't advise less as it really gives it the creaminess you desire.
- This amount of garlic suited us, but you might want to prep more than you need and add it as you go along, to taste. We like garlic.
- DO NOT be tempted to leave out the oat or soya cream in chasing some kind of crazy 'low-fat houmous' nightmare. The cream is what changes it magically from somewhat earthy separate ingredients to creamy, eyes-closed garlicky fused-together bliss.
- The amount of salt is up to you, but don't leave it out; you DO need it. Taste as you go along.

A blender is crucial.

You will need:

• One 400g tin of chickpeas, unsalted and with no added sugar
• 2 tbsp freshly-squeezed lemon juice
• 4 garlic cloves, crushed or finely sliced
NOTE: this method uses raw garlic. You can cook the garlic gently through in a little oil till transparent before adding but DO NOT BURN it or make it crispy.
• 100ml or three tablespoons of tahini (sesame seed paste)
• 4 tbsp good quality extra virgin olive oil
• Salt
• 3 tbsp oat or soya cream
• 1 tsp paprika (smoked is best) - to finish

Do this:

Drain the chickpeas and rinse really well. Save a few whole chick peas for putting on top when you serve.

Blend the chickpeas, lemon juice, garlic, salt, tahini, and oil in a blender, to a creamy purée.

Stop the blender and taste it!
At this point, add the cream.
Blend again till well creamy but without sacrificing all texture - you know what houmous looks like. Aim for that.
Taste again, add more lemon juice, garlic, or salt to taste if you need to.

Dump your precious load into an attractive large bowl, put the saved chick peas on top, sprinkle with the paprika and drizzle with with extra virgin olive oil. You can even bob a few black olives on top.

It's nice served warm, so if you want to do that, heat it through VERY gently without bubbling, and keep stirring.

Eat with fresh bread. I served mine with some hastily knocked-up gram flour flatbreads and served it with some steamed oily greens.

*Postscript: just tried a version with cooked garlic, just gently cooked through till transparent in olive oil. It definitely knocked back the garlic flavour, so if you prefer a garlic kick, shove it in the blender raw!

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