Small pleasures: The thing about baking

If you’ve spent some time with me (and that includes on Twitter) you’ll know that I’m a bit brownie-obsessed. Not so much with eating them, although that affords a pleasure of its own, but with finding the perfect recipe.

I won’t go all Nigella and use terms like unctuous or elven foodstuff, but brownies really are incredible. It still blows my mind that mixing various powders from the kitchen cupboard with butter and a few eggs produces something so delicious it makes your toes twitch.

Consequently, whenever I eat a brownie my thoughts are “hrrrrrngh” followed by “but how can I make it better?” This leads to thinking it’s okay to spend nearly a fiver on TWO vanilla pods and getting angry when Asda Charlton doesn’t stock chocolate with the cocoa percentage I need.

But a pleasant side effect of all this baking is sharing. More for the sake of my thighs than out of altruism, if I’m being honest. But seriously – bring French Toast Cupcakes or Cocoa Brownies into the office and you’ll make a tonne of new friends. One or two might insist on giving you a nickname (“How’s it going, Al?”) but karma will take care of them.

Obviously there are better things I could be doing with my time. Like visiting London’s best small museums, trying a new cheese or finishing that book I’m supposed to be writing.

But there are few greater pleasures than coming home on a Friday, switching the radio to Heart FM and baking some shit. And your housemates aren’t allowed to get annoyed at the disco tunes because 1) they’re stone cold classics and I’ll personally nut anyone who disagrees, and 2) you’re making a cake. Nothing ever goes wrong when you’re baking a cake*.

*Apart from this

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