Photo by Minal Photography.
I saw a friend this week. We went to school together many years ago. She gave birth to her first born child just two days before my third son arrived.
We descended on her, all five of us, snotty nosed and covered in germs. The way you are when you have a three and a five-year-old as well as a baby; there's no time for antibacterial hand spray. I promised myself I wouldn't do it, really I did, but then I couldn't help myself.
I committed the mortal sin of trying to impart my knowledge on her. It's exactly the kind of thing that used to drive me to distraction as a first time mother. Some friend who just happened to have won the prize for reproducing sooner and with more vigour than me would rock up, pronounce everything was actually really easy once you have a few kids and advise I basically slightly ignore my baby and let him cry a little sometimes. Oh and sleep when the baby sleeps. I'm as bad as all the others. It comes from a friendly well meaning place of course, but really it's just plain annoying. (Note. To Self.) Next time I see her I will make her these brownies as way of an apology and stop being such a know it all.
Makes 12 little brownies but you can cut them up smaller or bigger
325g dark chocolate, broken into pieces
1 tbsp vanilla extract
175g light brown sugar
65g castor sugar
3 large eggs (at room temperature)
100g ground almonds
Preheat the oven to 180C/gas mark four. Line a 20 x 20cm square tin with non stick paper. Place the chocolate and butter into a medium saucepan and heat on a very low heat, stirring all the time until dissolved and molten. (If you are too scared to do this and worried about the chocolate going all grainy then use the bain marie method).
Add all of the other ingredients, mix well until well combined and pour into the tin. Bake for 20 - 25 minutes until the top of the brownie has formed a crust but there's still a little squidge left in the middle. (The sides will be a little better cooked.) It may have puffed up a bit but will sink after removing from the oven. Cool on a wire rack still in the tin until completely cool. Slice with a hot knife (dipped in boiling water) for perfect little squares that happily accompany a nice cup of tea.
More recipes from Holly on her blog, Recipes from a Normal Mum.
Holly's first book is out 17 July 2014 called Recipes from a Normal Mum.