Ah yes, it is that time of year again. Birthday month. Not mine alas. But it seems that most of those in my life decided to enter the world at the same time. This is convenient, as the month long celebration helps dull the pain that winter is upon us.
This year the family birthday celebrations were at mine. The table buckled under the weight of all the goodies that the family brought along – Hannah’s perfect chocolate chip cookies, Cathy’s famous scones with jam and cream, Nana Pat’s beautiful moist boiled orange cake, Gillian’s delicious homemade hummus with crunchy fresh veggies and Andrew and Vicki’s zesty lemon cake. Nana’s beautiful Noritaki crockery was set neatly on the table, ready to be filled with warm Scottish Breakfast tea and strong hot coffee. And amid the mayhem, Mum’s cake stand stood regally, laden with Nana’s Jam Drops and Chocolate Rough Slice.
Chocolate Rough Slice
And so we begin with the slice. You may be aware of my slice trepidation. This slice was no different. Perhaps I should name this slice-xiety. Nana’s kitchen was always clear when she cooked. Nothing cluttering up the bench. I would like to think that I could be like this. But I am not the same calm, gently woman. I am a frantic ball of dottiness. The result of this can be seen below. This was what my kitchen looked like when I baked the slice…not at all conducive to decreasing slice-xiety.
For the base:
– 4 oz. butter or substitute (this is about 120 grams)
– 1/3 cup castor sugar
– 1/4 cup coconut
– 1 cup self-raising flour
– 1 dessertspoon cocoa
– pinch salt
For the Chocolate Rough Topping:
– 3 tablespoons condensed milk (what! 3 tablespoons! I made Karen’s famous ice cream with the rest – delicious)
– 1 tablespoon cocoa
– cup sifted icing sugar
– 1 oz. butter or substitute (about 30 grams)
– 1 cup coconut
– 1 teaspoon vanilla
Sift the dry ingredients into basin (no not your sink, a bowl), add sugar and coconut; stir in melted butter, mixing well. Press into greased and lined 11inch x 7inch lamington tin. I’ve always been confused as to whether the measurement is taken from the top of the pan or the bottom. Turns out it is from the top.
Bake in a moderate oven (180 degrees) for 25 minutes.
Cool slightly on wire rack; cover with Chocolate Rough Topping while still warm. What? Where were those instructions There’s this assumption in all of Nana’s recipes that you’ve read the whole recipe first – who does that?…what, you do?…oops. This is when my slice-xiety really kicked in, frantically making this topping before the slice cooled. Relax though, you’ll find them below – hopefully you read this through first.
Chocolate Rough Topping:
Combine all ingredients in basin (get another bowl out), mix well.
Note: there were some nervous moments when trying to smooth this over the base. Perhaps mine had cooled a little too much, but it seemed to be sticking to me and not to the base. I used my fingers and made sure I had really clean, very slightly damp fingers. This really helped.
I then put mine in the fridge to cool and cut it into squares a few hours later.
Slice-xiety gone. This slice is ace, probably one of my favourites so far.
Kath & Kate xx