I pride myself on being a competent baker, so it’s a matter of personal indignity when something goes wrong. Saturday was clearly a bad day, because not only did I mess something up once, I then made the same mistake again.
I was inspired to make fridge cake by my colleague Nell, whose birthday was last week. She occasionally brings in the most delicious specimens, studded with Maltesers and ginger biscuits. I also have fond memories of making something known as “Mountain Cake” at primary school – chocolate, butter and syrup melted together with broken biscuits and dried fruit.
Our oven has been broken for a month now, and I can’t bake anything. So the idea of making some tasty no-bake “‘Smores” fridge fudge was tempting. But something went wrong while I was melting the chocolate. Either it got too hot, or water got in. Or it was just a crappy recipe. Either way, I ended up with a grainy, sticky mess that looked more like soil (or poo, depending how strong your stomach is) rather than a smooth fudge. My housemates are slowly picking at it with a spoon – and it is indeed tasty – but certainly not something I could take to work.
May I present to you Fridge cake FAIL number 1:
Back to the shop for more chocolate, and a quick Google for a better recipe – surely Waitrose’s fridge cake recipe wouldn’t fail me?
But no. This time it was worse. Not only did the chocolate seize again, but it separated horribly while I was mixing in the biscuits and dried fruit. It looked revolting. Worse than the contents of a toddler’s nappy. There was no saving it, and it ended up on a one-way trip to the compost bin:
I am kicking myself that I have twice screwed up making something that the eight-year-old me used to knock up without even thinking.
What on earth am I doing wrong? Is the chocolate mixture getting too hot? Should I have done it in the microwave instead of a double-boiler? Or am I just getting cocky and the Domestic Goddess is kicking me in the arse?
I’d love to hear your tips and recipes for making successful fridge cake. Also please share your kitchen failures, and make me feel a bit better about it all.