10.30 am: Overheard at my conception:
“Mummy, where do Sticky Toffee cookies come from?”
“Well, this one needs 140g of dates … that’s right, take the stones out. Put them in a saucepan. Not the stones … the dates, sweetie. Now add 2 tablespoons of water. Hmm, you spilt a bit. Add another tablespoon, then. And 2 tablespoons of golden syrup. Yes, I know it’s sticky. No! Don’t lick … oh, go and wash your hands again.
Don’t touch the saucepan now, sweetie. It’s hot – I boiled the dates and look, they’re all mulchy now. Let’s finish them off in the food processor. Okay, you can stir in a teaspoon of grated orange zest and 1/4 teaspoon (not heaped … knock a bit off) of bicarbonate of soda now. No! You can’t lick the spoon! Can you help me scrape this all out into a mixing bowl?
That’s it – tap the sieve. No, it’s not sugar – we’re sieving 225g of plain flour into the bowl. We’ll add 165g of castor sugar next. And the butter (100g). And finally, one egg. Crack it first, sweetie. Oh dear, never mind. Let’s just try to fish out as much of the shell as we can. Then you can give it all a good stir. Try to keep it in the bowl.”
11 am: It’s very dark in here. And cold, too. There’s a monotonous whirring sound and a pervading aroma of blue cheese. I must be in The First-Fridge Trimester.
11.30 am: A bright light, the door opens. Here’s a tablespoon. Ooo, that tickles! Look, I’m a round ball on a baking sheet now. So this is what happens in the Second-Shaping Trimester.
11.35 am: I’m getting very hot in here. It’s 180 degrees C! I can feel myself spreading out a bit, too. This has to be the Third-Thermal Trimester.
11.45 am: I’m beginning to turn brown now and I’m getting crispy around my edges. Things are speeding up …
11.48 am: It’s a spatula-delivery!
11.55 am: Hands off – I haven’t cooled down yet!
12 noon: Mmmm … I was born for this.