I am facing a serious test of will-power.
And I am not talking about trying to resist this chocolate covered candy creation (although more about that later).
I really, really, really want to eat a slice of bread. A thick slab of soft bloomer, spread with butter (and maybe a little jam). Or toast. Maybe half a slice of bread and half a slice of toast in order to satisfy both cravings. It’s a wanton thought that has been lurking at the back of my mind (and also the front of it) for weeks. I really want some bread. Proper bread.
But I can’t. And I know I can’t. In one swoop, or 1 minute of utter blissful satisfaction, I will have undone all the good I have done over the past 12 months (since I discovered oats were a no-no also). I know that eating that slice of bread will give me a poorly, disgruntled belly for 2 weeks. I know that it will send my immune system into overdrive after it has finally settled down and got back to normal. I know it will do me no good whatsoever.
So I can’t. And I won’t.
But right now it is hard. Really hard. Because bread is all I want.
Gluten free bread isn’t going to help take the craving away either, because quite frankly it is not the same. Not a bit.
Don’t get me wrong, most of the time the fact that I have to avoid gluten doesn’t bother me – apart from the whole eating out thing when I get a bit stressed and feel awkward and as if I need to apologise for my unconventional body all the time and I just want to go and hide in the corner and not be a nuisance to anyone. I don’t feel deprived of anything, because most things I can replicate. I will admit that there may be times when, if you waved one of those cinnamon swirly danish pastry thingies under my nose, I will want to punch you in the face (they were one of my favourites), but on the whole I am fine with it. I feel significantly better, so why wouldn’t I be.
Which is why this whole bread thing is tormenting me. Why all of a sudden is it on my mind so much? Why, why, why?! I wish it would go away. I may have to resort to buying one of those butter laden gluten free croissants that are more e-numbers and air than anything else in a bid to try and get rid of it. Or maybe some gf crumpets from Marks & Spencer (the best gf crumpets in my opinion, in case you were wondering, I have yet to try making my own). Yes, maybe the crumpets will satiate it for a bit, soft and buttery and I can even add jam . . .
If any of you have any tips on how to get through this torturous phase, please let me know. Until it passes I am trying to distract myself with other things.
Any what better than chocolate covered honeycomb – or cinder toffee, hokey pokey, or as my Mum called it the other day ‘puff candy’ which was a new one on me. Whatever you call it, it is delicious, and one of my weaknesses.
And if you enrobe it in dark chocolate, well, enough said, because seriously . . . It. Is. Good. With a capital ‘G’.
If dark chocolate is not your thing, then by all means use milk. But a good quality, cocoa rich (at least 70%) dark chocolate offsets the tooth jangling sweetness of the honeycomb perfectly.
I over-did mine a little bit – so it really was cinder toffee – and as a result it shattered more than broke up into large pieces. Not that this was a problem, because after I had coated all the large bits I tipped all the little bits into the chocolate, mixed it around and dolloped blobs of it onto the paper to set, so I had chocolate clusters of honeycomb, which is no bad thing.
I also used the cheats way of tempering the chocolate – melted 75% of it, then added the remaining 25% and stirred until it had melted – which is the method I have described below. If you want to go all technical and get your thermometer out, go ahead. I won’t stop you. But I may tut at how pedantic you are being . . .
PS – I nearly forgot to say – package it up into pretty little bags and you have lovely – dare I say it – Christmas gifts! Or halloween treats. Or just sat-on-the-sofa-in-your-PJs-watching-a-film nibbles . . .
PPS – there is still time to link up your chocolate recipes in the cook & share!
Chocolate covered Honeycomb
- 1 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 100g caster sugar
- 60ml golden syrup
- 300g quality dark chocolate (at least 70& cocoa)
- Line a baking sheet with non-stick baking paper.
- Measure out the bicarbonate of soda into a small bowl and set aside.
- Place the sugar and golden syrup into a heavy bottomed pan and place over a medium heat.
- Allow the mixture to slowly melt and then come up to a boil. It is important that you do not stir it, as it will crystallise. The pan can be swirled occasionally, but do not stir.
- Let the mixture bubble and darken in colour, until it becomes similar in colour to maple syrup.
- Remove from the heat and quickly whisk in the bicarbonate of soda. The mixture will bubble up.
- Pour onto the prepared baking sheet and leave to harden in a cool, dry place. If the air is too humid / damp, the honeycomb will become sticky and gooey.
- Once it is cold, break into pieces.
- Melt 225g of the chocolate in a bowl placed over a pan of barely simmering water (make sure the base of the bowl doesn’t touch the water). Once the chocolate has melted, remove the bowl from the heat and add the remaining 75g of chocolate. Stir until it has melted.
- Coat the pieces of honeycomb in the chocolate and place on non-stick paper. Leave to set in a cool, dry place. Store in an airtight container.
NB – any small pieces of honeycomb can be mixed into any left over melted chocolate to make chocolate clusters.
© The Pink Rose Bakery 2014
Adapted a little from Nigella Lawson’s Hokey Pokey