I love food – I spent a large part of my adult life feeling hungry and I can cook. There’s not much more depressing than loving the taste of canapes but having to turn them down at every party you attend. Well, not having to – except in my mind.
I found out I was pregnant in December of 2010. Then it was open season on food. I’d had a body like tits on a stick before then. A boy scout with boobs…well, not any more. I still have the boobs but now I have hips, thighs, rolling shoulders, apple cheeks and pouty lips. No arse – that’s still a glorified hinge but there’s a lot of rounded edges there. I’m never sure if I’m happy with it or not – it’s a mixed bag really. I touch on that occasionally but it’s actually quite a raw place for me.
I cook less than Mr Sophie’s Voice. I think the same amount but I’m sure he’ll object vociferously. Anyway, he’s a good cook and – logically – it makes more sense for the person with talent to use their skills, doesn’t it?
I love food so much that I couldn’t choose a favourite dish – I come from a family with a tradition of large shared meals and showing love through providing good hospitality. Mr Sophie’s Voice and I always loved to entertain friends before I got pregnant but we’ve let it slide lately. Just the odd thing here and there – boozy suppers for my girlfriends and I, roasts with my bestie and her boyfie, two christenings, birthday parties for kids and adults. They each come with very defined menus. I love them all but it gave me the proverbial embarrassment of riches.
I’m a showy hostess – I wear high heels to my own parties – and I like things to look good. I always used to cook pretty puddings. Preferably pastel and sugary. I’m a girl who likes lemon and almond, meringues, blondies, clafoutis, petits fours, individual everything – anything small is automatically cuter – baklava, churros… Fuck, I just really love sugar.
I think, ideally, I would lie around in silk loungewear all day on a bed with full makeup and my hair piled on top of my head so that I could just eat and eat and eat the whole time. My children would be cared for by nannies and I would live at night on champagne and gold, sequinned dresses. Ahhh…I went to a happy place there. Dial that down…
Yep, forget I said all that. I understand if the vision of me in my lingerie stays in the mind – you’re only human – but it’s not important now. Back on track. I thought I’d give you something I eat everyday. I eat pretty well actually. There’s a lovely lemon, garlic and green olive roast chicken recipe somewhere in the book. Or a linguine dish with king prawns and chorizo. You don’t keep these curves by giving up carbs. I considered my swishy raspberry pavlova – honestly, walk into a dining room carrying that little beauty. People love it.
Then I had a revelation. Stop showing off and just write down the recipe for what you feel like eating right now. Right now, I’m tired and irritable. I’ve been riding an emotional rollercoaster since I started the Blogtober Challenge. I need something that will be comforting and go with the copious cups of tea and coffee I am drinking at the moment. I need it to be suitable for every meal and be storable in the jar I keep on the kitchen table.
So today I give you the recipe for Pumpkin Muffins. That’s right. Pumpkin Muffins. It’s supposed to be super healthy but the pumpkin comes from a tin and there’s a shit load of butter and syrup so take that with a pinch – something I removed from the recipe as it’s unhealthy!
1 can of pumpkin, 1 cup of butter, 1/2 cup of syrup – I like maple but golden is pretty good, 2 eggs, 1 dsp vanilla essence or extract, 3 cups of self raising flour, 1 & 1/2 cup golden (or demerara) sugar, 1 generous tsp bicarbonate of soda, 1 generous tsp baking powder, 1 tsp ground cinnamon, 1 tsp ground ginger, 1 tsp ground nutmeg. You can throw in a cup of ground almonds too if you like then.
Soften the butter and mix with the other wet ingredients. Sift the dry ingredients together and then add – gradually – to the wet mix. Mix carefully.
Divide the mix into 18 muffin cases – grown up size – and bake at around 160c. No idea what that is in gas mark but you’ve got Google so knock yourselves out.
Here’s the part that you’re going to have to wrap your heads around. I can’t give you a time for baking. It can be anything from 40 minutes to around 90. It’s a fairly claggy mix and vile if it doesn’t cook properly so invest in wooden cocktail sticks or skewers, You have to check or end up eating something that’s probably poisonous.
They’re pretty amazing when you get it right. They go really well with coffee and tea and you can have one for breakfast and look legitimately like you’re somewhat healthy. Pumpkin muffins, people. Honestly, people who fall for that have not tasted them…