I was hoping to have a platterful of fluffy scones to banish everyone’s Spring blues today; lovely giant-bite-sized morsels of deliciousness which are – or rather, would be - toddler-friendly (both to eat and to make), mummy-friendly (ditto) and visitor-friendly (if you ever find yourself with such rarities; visitors stopped coming here around about the same time that all the children’s lungs were gurgling out of their mouths, and – strangely – they’ve never reappeared.)
Alas, I’ve had One Of Those Days, and the scones – like everything else – fell into a great big sink-hole* of horror. That it’s been particularly awful is highlighted by the fact that the root canal treatment I had earlier was not the worst part of it. In fact, it was a solid hour without any small people trying to climb back into me (I truly hate when they do that; and what’s with the standing on my feet? I am literally down-trodden) and as such might in fact qualify as one of the better parts. It rained constantly and I didn’t have the energy, or the self-hatred, to organise a trip to a soft-play area, and so we stayed indoor all day. Some of the heavy drugs I was on messed with my head, because I decided in my wisdom that an afternoon baking scones would suffice as exercise for the feral beasts I have managed to produce. The recipe was taken from a new cook book I bought at the weekend; I won’t say which one, because while it all looks great on paper (literally), the proof of the pudding is not living up to expectations, and thus I don’t think it deserves any publicity. So far I have found THREE typos – unforgiveable ones (such as “see my tip for buttermilk on page XX?” – who missed that?) including the omission of the butter step from a recipe for – yes – scones. So I followed this fucking recipe to the letter, wondering, as I picked bits of raw scone off the Girl’s forehead, what I was meant to do with the 300g of butter I’d cut into cubes. No amount of reading the recipe would magic the butter instruction to appear (obviously you just blend it with the flour before adding the wet ingredients, but I’d committed the cardinal sin of not reading the recipe through before I began – if I had I would have seen that THERE WAS NO BUTTER INSTRUCTION). I should just have Googled “Mary Berry Scones”, like any sane person would.
Anyway, spitting nails in fury, I remade the fucking scones, and they were shit. Not shit enough that I didn’t serve them to the kids after tea, but then again there’s little they won’t eat if it isn’t covered in crème fraiche and jam.
And so, instead of scones, I shall continue on my theme of Food That Children Think Is Unhealthy But Isn’t Really (otherwise known as Getting One Over On Your Offspring, mwah hahaha.)
Popsicles. My children think that if food is frozen and sweet, it must be bad for you. Usually this is indeed the case, but not always - not if the £378-worth of vases, tea-lights and other cack you’ve bought in Ikea also includes popsicle moulds. Honestly, these are one of the best things I’ve ever bought. Forget baking anything with children; cut out the hard work and instead just shake a large pack of flour around your kitchen, then hand out ice-pop moulds and yoghurt / fruit / both, and tell them to get busy.
Several times a week mine are each given a spoon, a tub of lemon curd yoghurt (oh my, it’s good) and the moulds, and I quickly read a chapter of a book in the 3 minutes it takes them to smear yoghurt all over the table. Some of it gets into the mould however, and once frozen it’s a thing of culinary beauty. I’d eaten all the yogurt yesterday (it’s like someone took a lemon meringue pie and made it creamy then stuck it in a teeny pot. OF COURSE I’m going to eat it all) so instead we mashed a banana with kiwis and some apple juice, and froze the result.
Ask them if they’d like a nice bowl of banana and kiwi after dinner, and wipe the toddler spit from your eye; hand them one of these beauties, acting like it’s KILLING you to allow them to eat them, and you’ll be the most popular person in the house.
So popular, in fact, that they'll try to climb back in to your body, using your poor throbbing jaw for a decent grip.
(*We are all going to Florida in a couple of weeks. Recent newsworthy events have diminished my excitement somewhat. Also, a rather sadistic part of me is longing to tell the Boy about The Man-Eating Sinkhole – he loves stories like that – but I know I would never ever hear the end of it, and the holiday would be destroyed by the never-ending loop of questions-tears-trauma-questions.)