Within moments of arriving home today, my youngest son had disappeared, and the next I heard was a call for dried lavender. There had been some wacky science experimentation by my elder son the night before so I assumed we were on another ‘science project’ and thought about whether the teacher should maybe have sent some dried lavender home – it is hardly kept in abundance by the modern housewife of 2013!! However, the next yell was a query for 160g of dark chocolate and it caused me to enquire as to exactly why all these ingredients were required. I followed his ramblings to locate him in the kitchen entrenched in a 2012 Delicious magazine, he must have plucked randomly from the shelf! Holding it aloft at Valli’s Kitchen Diary, Morgan was assessing the ingredients for the Molten Black Forest Puddings. Undeterred by the fact that we had no amarena cherries in the house, Morgan insisted that we could use the frozen blackberries left over from the berry cheesecake and refused to take no for an answer. After insistence that the homework be completed first, my son determinedly worked his way through Valli’s recipe.
His single mindedness to the task was punctuated by talk of the upcoming cooking competition at school and I realised that his competitive nature was kicking in. Boys were all talking about the Mini MasterChef, I am to hold at their school next week. 420 boys will cook in the heats to find an eventual 4 to cook up a storm for myself, Paula, Sean Armstrong and Simon Gault. Morgan is not to be left behind and intends to prove his place.
Really wondering if it was necessary to work on molten puddings on a weekday I didn’t have the heart to deter him and so he plunged forth, with a dessert that I struggle to get right (and I am not the only cook who wonders if this dessert will over cook or collapse on the plate!)
But of course, at 10 years of age, the adventure is far more exciting than the concern of technique and I watched as Morgan read carefully to keep the eggs beating for 5 minutes until pale, and then literally stared at the mixer until they turned as pale as could be. Adding the flour, he noted the machine wasn’t achieving an even mix – so he stopped the machine and used a spatula to fold it through – by default ensuring a light aerated batter.
At that point I was pretty sure he was going to nail the dessert – and had a quiet chuckle at the number of times we tried to make SImon Gault’s Molten Puddings at the MasterChef NZ mansion and never got them right!!!
When the puddings were ready to be turned onto a plate, I waited with anticipation and watched the eager hope on Morgan’s face. He was deflated at first, as they didn’t look like the photo in the magazine, but they sure were a success – looked appetizing and tasted divine. Two have gone into the freezer, as an experiment on how molten puddings taste as an iced dessert, but the other four went swiftly into satisfied bellies. I know who can be onto desserts next time I host a dinner!! I hope he has just as much success and satisfaction at the school’s Mini MasterChef – against his peers.