A few weeks back Julia at ‘A Slice of Cherry Pie‘ was offering 5 Mayan Magic Chocolate kits to food bloggers who promised to blog the experience. Sounded like fun and as I love chocolate I rushed in and bagged one. It arrived a few days later but it sat untouched for a while – I was busy and wanted to do it justice and also blog as much of each step as I could…..so here is what you get and do:
1. The kit:
2. What’s inside:
3. The butters:
4. The powders:
5. My chosen flavours (lavender, cardamom, lemon zest). I hardly used any of each:
6. The butter ready to melt in a bain marie (i.e. over hot water):
7. The powders after sieving (they needed it they had gone quite solid):
8. The melted butters:
9. Whisking in the powders (I added a little of the agave at the end for some sweetness but it didn’t need much):
10. Then I spilt it into 4 lots and added the flavours and kept one lot plain. I learnt here that you need to keep each lot warm else it cools so quickly you can’t pour it into the moulds properly and it becomes all mis-shapen (see later)
11. I poured (and pushed!) it into ice cube trays and got 4 ‘cubes’ per flavour so 16 cubes in total. Then it went into the fridge to set for 1.5 hours (or in my case overnight).
12. Next morning at coffee time so we popped the cubes from the trays.
13. Some worked:
14. Some looked a bit mangled:
And the taste:
The flavours were nice but over-powered any chocolatey-ness (and I only used a teeny bit of each), the plain version was okay but not brilliant.
Very grainy/gritty and not smooth at all, disappointing. Alex over at ‘A Brit’s Dish a Day‘ had the same problem so I’m guessing that’s how it is rather than us getting it wrong.
A bit. But the instructions aren’t clear that it will cool so quickly and become difficult to pour into moulds. I made it hard for myself by doing 4 flavours with one kit – the instructions anticipate one flavour being added to the melted butters before the powder.
Would I buy one?
Having looked up the price (£14.25 plus shipping, as far as I can tell, for 150g of chocolate) I had to lie down. I can get 3 different flavored Rococo bars (70g each) for this money or about 14 Divine plain bars (100g each). I’m sorry to have to say that I wouldn’t buy this either for myself or as a gift. It wasn’t enough fun, its pricey and the taste/texture wasn’t the tops.
Not currently a winner – it needs some re thinking I feel.
On Sunday Monday I finally decided to make a sourdough starter. It takes FOUR weeks of patient waiting and ‘feeding’ before you get to make a loaf.
I’m not a patient person so each time I pass I have to try very hard to resist taking a peek to see what’s happening under the lid. Sometimes I just manage to leave it alone others I succumb. So I thought I’d share these peeks with you so you too can live the joys and worries of making sourdough.
I’ll keep updating this post so come back if you want to see what’s a foot – or follow me on Twitter to hear the latest. As I add new pictures they’ll be right here so you’ll need to scroll down if you want to watch the full process.
Update 6 (above): Well the yeasty foam is disappearing day by day to reveal the pinky brown cloudy liquid – nice. The smell is just as bad each time I lift the lid – so I’m mostly staying away. Feeding commences Friday 8.00am BST so have stocked up on flour and am ready to enter phase 2 with my sourdough – can hardly wait. Date/time: 13 May 2009 2.00pm BST
Update 5 (above): its now been just over a week since I made the sourdough thing (yes its a thing). I tried not to peek too much this weekend as we had guests and I imagined they might not want to feel like they were visiting an unattended football teams sock laundry pile! Anyway today the starter is looking rather sad. Its getting a bit of the promised pink tinge but the thick yeasty foam is collapsing and glimpses of dirty looking liquid can be seen below. Ugh. Only a few more days before the phase 2 feeding ritual commences….Date/time: 11 May 23.00 BST
Update 4 (above): just clocked through 100 hours of bubbling (and waiting). Its getting smellier but so far this isn’t creeping out to fill the kitchen (a good fitting lid is clearly essential). Here’s more of a close up on all that home grown yeasty-ness. Date/time: 9 May 2009 9.30am BST
Update 3: We are now 3 1/2 days in and its smelling like a VERY ripe cheese (but still only if you lift the lid). It doesn’t look much different from yesterday so I decide to prod it with a spoon. I can tell its liquidy underneath with a thick sticky stretchy topping. Still yellow-ish coloured. This is where may patience is going to be tested severely I think…..Date/time: 8 May 2009 8.00am BST
Update 2: At 60 hours its going a bit crazy, lots of bubbling, bit more smelly and I’m worried its going to break free from the bowl: Date and time 7 May 2009 9.30am BST
First up: 36 hours old, yellowy colour, flour has settled to bottom, slightly tangy smell starting to develop (but only if you lift the lid): Date and time 6 May 2009 9.15am BST