The Wooden Spoon Adventures

Let’s all sing …

Happy 5th Blogiversary to A Merrier World,
Happy 5th Blogiversary …

Hmmm. Maybe not. It doesn’t quite scan, does it?

But it really is my blog’s 5th birthday (despite the fact that the Choc Chip Cookie Brownie Cake above has seven candles. I was never very good with numbers).

Five years ago today, I clicked ‘publish’ for the first time and held my breath as my chocolate brownie tentatively announced my new, official status of ‘food blogger.’ Since that day, I have discovered friendships among an online crowd of passionate food bloggers and bakers, I have entertained Rose Levy Beranbaum and her assistant, Woody Woolston at home and abroad, and even conjured up a surprise at Dart’s Farm for two of my most loyal readers over the years, Melinda and Jeannette. My Great Pumpkin Cake seems to have spread far and wide across the internet whilst my Rainbow Cake and Unicorns post has inspired other Mums looking for party ideas for their young children. And WordPress tells me that this is my 150th post (gosh, how did that happen? A nice round, significant number like that? ;-) )

To celebrate this milestone (and five years is not so very short a time in terms of internet history), I’m sending a wooden spoon off into the big wide world to stir up some trouble.

Here’s the plan …

A few weeks ago, I snail-mailed a wooden spoon to one of my first-ever blog readers, Melinda. She had very generously agreed to come out of blogging retirement to write a post on her own blog about the adventures this wooden spoon would have with her when she used it to bake a tasty, local treat. She had also agreed to hound down, pester, cajole or bribe another willing food blogger to accept this wooden spoon afterwards and to take it on a further baking spree.

True to her word (for which I will be forever grateful), Melinda has introduced my wooden spoon to the delights of a Lemon Blueberry Buckle, nostalgically reminiscent of her roots in Oregon. She has also coined a new word – spoonee. Thank you, Melinda, for being such a wonderful first spoonee!  Next stop, Portland …

And so the wooden spoon’s adventures will hopefully continue, passing from baker to baker around the globe and whipping up a storm of regional specialities.

If all goes well, I will chart the Wooden Spoon’s Adventures here on A Merrier World by building up a page of links to all the delicious recipes the spoon has met on its culinary travels.

As for the lavishly-named, seven-candled Choc Chip Cookie Brownie Cake … here’s the recipe as a special birthday present from me to A Merrier World and its readers :-) .

Choc Chip Cookie Brownie Cake

Cookie Base
3 oz butter
2 oz caster sugar
2 1/2 oz light muscovado sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 medium egg
5 oz plain flour
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
5 oz chocolate chips

Cream the butter and sugars in a large mixing bowl.

Gradually beat in the vanilla and egg.

Stir in the flour, baking soda and salt.

Stir in the chocolate chips.

Spread the cookie dough in the base of a 9″ springform pan. Put in the fridge while making the brownie batter.

Brownie
3 oz plain flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp cocoa powder
5 1/2 oz plain chocolate
4 oz butter
1/4 tsp coffee granules
5 oz caster sugar
2 oz light muscovado sugar
2 large eggs
1 egg yolk
1 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C.

Whisk together the flour, salt and cocoa powder. Set aside.

Melt the chocolate and butter together in a bowl over a pan of hot water. Stir in the coffee granules.

Turn off the heat and whisk in the caster and muscovado sugars until completely combined.

Take the bowl off the pan of hot water and whisk in 1 egg, the egg yolk and vanilla.

Whisk in the second egg, but be careful not to overbeat at this stage.

Sprinkle the flour mixture over the top and fold in with a spatula.

Pour the brownie batter over the chilled cookie base.

Bake for 25 minutes until the brownie is just setting. Leave to cool completely on a wire rack.

Leave a comment

27 Comments

  1. Yey Kate! Happy blogaversary. So glad you posted this, I remember the prototype. It was amazing!

    Reply
    • I’d forgotten you’d helped us to polish it off (aka saved us from extreme over-indulgence!). Like your blog btw :-)

      Reply
  2. Dad

     /  August 9, 2012

    Congratulations on your 5th Blogiversary.
    I hope the wooden spoon keeps stirring the ingredients for Merrier World.
    Dad

    Reply
  3. Susan

     /  August 9, 2012

    what a lovely story and a bonus recipe to go with it… very unusual too! happy 5th anniversary to a Merrier World!

    Reply
    • I think this cookie/brownie cake is entering our family as a birthday regular – L has asked for one for her birthday too.

      Reply
  4. Vicki

     /  August 9, 2012

    What spoon fun! Your blog is such a delight.

    Reply
  5. I am honoured to be your first spoonee and long time reader. I absolutely love reading your blog as you always bang your own drum. (trying to say you are original and a curious baker) I hope the spoon enjoys many a exotic spoonee visits. I look forward to see where she flings to! Lots of good wishes and love to you and the lovely 5 year old blog!

    Reply
    • Curious as in “curiouser and curiouser” (ie downright strange) or curious as in questioning …? Lol – don’t answer! It might be the first!
      Thanks again for taking on my wooden spoon and posting a ‘Hey I’m back’ post for me on your blog. I’m really looking forward to making your lemon blueberry buckle. I don’t have any memories of Oregon (obviously, since I’ve never been to the States), but I do remember eating cake with you at Dart’s Farm, so I’ll have some fond things to think about while I’m eating it :-) .

      Reply
  6. Happy blogiversary! I will take good care of your spoon when it arrives. Here’s to a long, happy wooden spoon journey ’round the world!

    Reply
  7. I’m looking forward – v. excited! – to see what you’ll make with the spoon … and where it will end up next. Thank you for agreeing to let it visit you for a while!

    Reply
  8. Jeannette

     /  August 11, 2012

    I echo others in wishing you a Happy Blogiversary! Haven’t ‘clicked ‘ on for a few days so missed seeing this till today, I shall have to try out your recipe, it sounds good and chocolatey. I have nice memories of our surprise at Dart’s Farm, will never forget it!

    Reply
    • I’m not sure the ‘husbands’ quite understood what the fuss was about, but they put up with our passionate cake talk very well that day at Dart’s Farm. It would be lovely to meet up again. We keep saying that, but we really must!

      Reply
  9. Happy Blogiversary! Love the wooden spoon

    Reply
    • Thanks, Meg. You know, it’s such a coincidence – I’ve been thinking about black bean burgers for a while now, and when I click on your blog, there they are! Now I really have to get around to making some!

      Reply
  10. Despite having just made a coffee cream pie, I almost made this last night.
    Anyway, the Wooden Spoon, Portland edition has just been published!

    http://evilcakelady.blogspot.com/2012/08/the-wooden-spoon-adventures-portland.html

    Next stop; Colorado! Thanks, Kate, for such a fun project.
    Jennifer (Evil Cake Lady)

    Reply
  11. Kate, I just want to let you know that I have the spoon, I’ve baked the entry, written my post (it’s ready to launch). Having trouble getting the next spoonee! I hope to publish the post soon :).

    Reply
    • Thanks, Jen – I’m really looking forward to reading your post. I’ll get a dedicated page up on A Merrier World to track my spoon’s travels now that I have more time (school term starting … ;-) ).

      Reply
  12. Kate, I have given up trying to find a spoonee. I’ve emailed 4 people. 1 replied, saying they can’t. The others are MIA. I think I am going to send it back to ECL :).

    Reply
  13. Kate, Wooden Spoon, Denver is published. I made Zucchini Bread – using home-grown/local zucchini :).

    http://knittybaker.blogspot.com/2012/09/the-wooden-spoon-adventure-zucchini.html

    Reply
  14. Happy 5th Anniversary!!! Wow, my blog is a baby compared to yours ;). What a delicious recipe you’ve chosen to share, and I have to say, I love The Wooden Spoon Adventure. I’m thrilled to be the latest spoonee (I love in Virginia, USA), and the spoon will be sent to a fabulous blogger in Utah next. I’m looking forward to following the spoon as it travels from place to place. Such a cute idea!! I sure hope you’ll stop by to see my post.

    Take care,
    Patricia

    Reply
    • Your Virginia Apple Pudding is just perfect for the season, Patricia :-) . Thank you ever so much for entertaining my spoon – it’s already become more well-travelled than I am!

      Reply
  15. Jamie from Jamie Cooks It Up in Utah has become the latest spoonee with some Oats and Berry Bars. I love, love, love blueberries. And oaty things – so these two are a perfect combination as far as I’m concerned! Sorry for not responding sooner to your email, Jamie – we’ve been without internet access for some time (far, far too long a time) while waiting for our phone line to be fixed. Thank you for taking part in my spoon’s adventures!

    Reply

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