I’m not sure why I am feeling so nostalgic and almost homesick lately. I moved out of the family home 7 years ago to start a new life and create a new home with my now husband and to be honest, I couldn’t wait to get out of there.
But in the last few weeks, I have pining for the days, all those years ago, when life was easier and the most simple of things brightened my day.
I’ve been craving a lot of the food I grew up with. It was by no means glamorous or complex, it was purely simple, comforting food and it now reminds me of a simpler time.
For the past few weeks, I have been cooking a lot of this food. A bite of mum’s tuna casserole reminds me of getting my first pair of platform heels back when they were in style, the second time round. God, I thought I was so cool walking around with those bricks on my feet. Two sprained ankles later, I was more interested in my hyper-colour overalls.
The coconut macaroons she used to make remind me of coming home from school on winter afternoons, the house would be warm and filled with the scent of toasted coconut. It reminds me of sitting on the floor in front of the wall heater and TV, doing homework as the light faded outside, anxiously anticipating our first bite of macaroon or plotting to steal a few, warm off the tray, before dinner.
I remember when she was pregnant with my youngest sister, she went on some sort of wild baking, nesting rampage and was baking everyday. We’d come home from school to a kitchen covered in cooling trays of apricot cookies, coconut cookies, apple and cinnamon cookies, hedgehog slices, vanilla slices, Mars Bar slices…. It was like Christmas every day of the week.
Which brings me to today’s recipe I thought I would share. Nothing original or fancy, just a reminder of my childhood. The hedgehog slice reminds me of buying my first CD for my Very First CD Player. It was probably the most thrilling day of my life. Incredible. I won’t tell you what CD it was because it is completely mortifying, but rest assured if I ever hear that song it brings to mind memories of that excitement…and chocolate hedgehogs.
I’ve taken the recipe from here as it was the closest I could find to my mums because as we all know I am hopeless with measurements.
- 1 1/2 x 200g packets Marie biscuits, coarsely chopped
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
- 1/2 cup desiccated coconut
- 250g butter, chopped
- 1 1/4 cups caster sugar
- 1/3 cup cocoa powder
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 150g dark chocolate, melted
- 1/2 teaspoon vegetable oil
1. Grease a 20cm x 30cm lamington pan; line base and two long sides with baking paper, extending paper 2cm above edges of pan.
2. Combine biscuits, nuts and coconut in large bowl.
3. Place butter, sugar and sifted cocoa in a medium pan; stir over heat until butter is melted and sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat; whisk in egg.
4. Pour chocolate mixture over biscuit mixture; mix well. Press into prepared pan. Cover; refrigerate overnight.
5. Turn slice onto a chopping board; cut into pieces. Spoon combined warm, melted chocolate and oil in a small snap-lock plastic bag. Squeeze chocolate to one corner; twist bag, then snip tip of bag. Drizzle chocolate over top of slice; refrigerate for 15 minutes, or until chocolate is set.
Tip: Slice can be made up to four days ahead; store in an airtight container in your refrigerator.