A Writing Reward; Mars Bar Crispy Cake

A tray bake topped with choccie - winner, surely?

A tray bake topped with choccie – winner, surely?

Esteemed audience, as a reward for finishing off writing jobs I often bake or cook. And sometimes as an additional treat, I write about cooking as well.

For the past few weeks, I have been writing about dieting. My scribbles have been for a series of diet books shortly to be published on Amazon (do please forgive my lapse of writing etiquette with such a shameless plug of my own material) so tonight’s writing antidote is to provide you with a recipe for… Drum roll… Mars Bar Crispy Cake.

Ah, the joys! This is possibly the world’s easiest tray bake. Everyone loves it and if you ever want to achieve sell-out status at your local community bake sale or just curry favour with family, friends and your boss, bags full of cut-up Mars Bar Crispy Cake will probably achieve your aim.

The other bonus is this. If you need to babysit children (those aged 6-12, say) this is a great recipe to try out with them. I did this with my nieces (in-law) recently. There’s two of them so I divided the jobs – “ok, you grease the pan and you chop up the Mars bars (I watched!), whilst you mix up the Mars bar and butter and you get to mix up the rice crispies with the melty Mars bars” (this was the task of choice). Oh no it wasn’t. The task of choice was melting the Dairy Milk chocolate topping in the microwave was the task of choice. One square in bowl, one square in mouth etc.

Anyway, here’s the recipe. Enjoy… [I’ve used American measurements for the rice crispies because it’s easier to measure them by volume than by weight.]

Mars Bars Crispy Cake – makes 16-20

  • 3 x Mars Bar (British weight, 48g)
  • 120g unsalted butter
  • 50g mini marshmallows
  • 200g Dairy Milk chocolate
  • 4 cups rice crispies

Grease and line a 20cm square tray. Chop the Mars Bars and put in a thick-bottomed pan with 90g of the butter and melt over a low heat slowly. Keep stirring. Add the marshmallows and mix well until it resembles a smooth sauce.

Add the rice crispies and mix well. Tip into the prepared tray and press down well until it is flat. Leave to cool.

Melt the chocolate and the remaining butter together (30 secs at a time in the microwave is the easiest way, stir well after each 30 secs and remember that food will continue to cook outside the microwave so it’s better to stray on the side of undercooking). Top the crispie cake with the chocolate/butter mix and allow to cool. Cut up into the slices (about 16-20).

Thanks to Milky Mouthwatering Chocolates for the pic.

Five Days’ Worth of Writing

The sun is over the yardarm and a G&T beckons; export strength naturally...

The sun is over the yardarm and a G&T beckons; export strength naturally…

A writer’s work is never… done? The same? Uninteresting? Followed according to agreed grammatical rules and with correct spelling intact?

I ask as this week in the wonderfully wacky world of freelancing, I’ve come to the end of my working time without having made a start on a project planning job I’ve been putting off all week. The chap uttered the fatal words – “oh, no hurry”. Really, we should have clarified the ‘no hurry’ bit. Perchance did that mean, a few days will do? Or in a week’s time will be sufficient? Indeed, he may have meant ‘see you next month’.

Anyway, I have completed several blogs ahead of schedule due to procrastination on the part of this job, so hey ho…

As for writing never being the same, the topics I have written about this week include mushrooms, children’s climbing frames, trampolines, gardening for newbies, bathrooms and the Paleo diet. Perhaps there are connections – climbing frames, gardening and trampolines all take in the great outdoors, whilst mushrooms can be eaten as part of the Paleo diet.

[I’ve just written an e-book on the Paleo diet and am now contemplating setting up a business as a dietary expert where you log onto my website and I use every opportunity to flog you a diet book. It’s called the C-word diet – patent pending – and basically it involves you avoiding any culinary item which begins with a ‘C’. This way you eliminate crisps, cheese, chocolate, crisps and chips. Winner, huh?]

Joking aside, it’s the writer’s task to take any subject and make it interesting. So when you blog on bathrooms, for example, you do a little research and find out that certain regulations apply to toilets. A little more judicious digging and you uncover the tale of the shrinking cistern. And then there is the odd delightful gem, such as the majority of the nation’s men choosing Cheryl Cole as their bath companion of choice. The Queen was second choice – crass, as the article stated, won out over class.

And finally, I wrote a piece where I was taking on a certain persona so grammar and spelling flew out of the window. Regular readers may have noted – adherence to grammatical correctness isn’t entirely usual on this particular blog, so it wasn’t too much of a leap for me.

What writing treats await next week? FIRSTLY AND MOST IMPORTANTLY, I am going to complete aforementioned plan. I’m hoping it’s one of those jobs that you put off and put off, then start it and hey ho, it’s really, really straightforward and takes you about an hour.

Until next time, dear friends…

A 60-Second Facelift; Can it Work?

Yikes, the lack of wine drinking and cake baking has left me with plenty of time on my hands to surf the net, fall for the hype and purchase skincare products…

I am now the proud owner of a Rio 60-second face lift thingie. One of the (many) advantages of the world wide web is the wealth of reviews you find online so I did read these before pressing the ‘order’ button and the vast majority were positive.

Motive for buying? A desire to look fresh-faced and unlined for my wedding especially as I’m older than your average bride.

Basically you press the device on various parts of your face and it causes the muscles to contract. Exercised muscles stop sagging, allegedly. It is pretty uncomfortable and it doesn’t half hurt your teeth, but in the four days I’ve been using it, I have noticed an effect around my eyes and on the nose-to-mouth lines. I shall report back…

I’m back at my pre-Christmas weight. I made up my own diet; eating between three to eight ‘superfoods’ a day and sticking to about 1,400 calories (try myfitnesspal.com for a great calorie counting app).

Superfoods are a marketing concept, but spinach, berries, broccoli and oily fish are very good for you and they give you great skin too. I may well trademark my concept and write a diet book (as the world DEFINITELY needs another diet book, non?).