Stephanie of Dispensing Happiness has chosen Comfort Foods as this month’s Blog Party. As usual she requests that those who are attending bring a finger food and a drink. When I think of comfort food I immediately think of macaroni and cheese, and that’s why I wrote about it when Ivonne and Orchidea hosted a one off event called Dishes of Comfort. In an effort to bring something new to the table I opted for a sweet comfort food this time around. Chocolate is always a good choice for comfort; chocolate ice cream, chocolate brownies, chocolate cheesecake, chocolate fudge… Fudge. It’s a fun word to say too. Ah fudge! Fudge gets even more comforting when you add dried cherries to it. Cherries in any form are a comfort food for me because they remind me of family. Every summer of my life I’ve worked in my Grandparents cherry orchard alongside my cousins, aunts and uncles so whenever I think of cherries, that’s what comes to mind. Well, that and the fact that they’re just plain tasty.
As for a beverage to bring to the party, my mind drifted once more to hot chocolate. I’ve mentioned on a couple of occasions that I enjoy chocolate and Baileys together. This time around I thought I’d drop the Baileys, (maybe because I’m all out of it…) and go for your classic hot chocolate with ooey gooey marshmallows on top. Although the hot chocolate would have been comforting enough all on its own, it’s infinitely more comforting when it’s served in a Peter Rabbit mug. For a very long time, (still?) the boxed set of Peter Rabbit books by Beatrix Potter sat on a shelf behind my bed, ready at a moment’s notice for storytime. The books were wonderful and so was my Peter Rabbit dish set. That charming little rabbit could very well be responsible for my love of food. When I was little I had to eat everything out of the bowl to see him starring back at me on the bottom. I never wanted to miss out on Peter Rabbit so in went the food.
So today ended up being a comforting day not only in the food department, but also in the mail department. I love getting mail, it’s as good as Christmas. Today I received one of my many Amazon purchases; Flavours by Donna Hay. (Please send help… Visa can’t take it anymore and is threatening to disown me.) This is my first Donna Hay book and it’s beautiful. Her pictures are so pretty, and most importantly, her food tastes just as good as it looks! The fun didn’t stop there though, today was also the day I received by Blogging By Mail Valentine’s postcard which came from Chelsea of Bon Vivant. She sent me a wonderful card which she made herself. Homemade cards are the best! I put it up on my fridge. Thanks
Chocolate Fudge with Cherries and Pistachios (Adapted from Very Best Baking)
1 ½ cups granulated sugar
1 cup evaporated milk
2 T butter
¼ tsp fleur de sel
2 cups marshmallows
2 oz 85% cocoa chocolate, chopped
8 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped
¼ cup pistachios, chopped
¼ cup pecans, chopped
½ cup dried cherries
Line and 8 inch square baking pan with foil.
Combine sugar, evaporated milk, butter and salt in a medium, heavy bottomed saucepan. Bring to a full rolling boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Boil, stirring constantly, for 5-6 minutes. Remove from heat.
Stir in everything that’s leftover until marshmallows and chocolate are melted. Pour into prepared baking pan. Refrigerate for 2 hours or until firm. Lift from pan, remove foil, cut into pieces.
Stores well in wax paper in a ziplock.