Darth Baker Faces a Nutty Problem

The ageing Anakin Skywalker never had to deal with this! OK, he had an Empire to subjugate, but I have to face my own battles too – the weekend family to-do list. That is how I found myself taking a momentary break from lightsaber battles in the upstairs deathstar to bake chocolate chip cookies.

(I mentioned this on twitter and love @garlicconfit‘s suggestion of being called ‘Darth Baker’)

Don't drink and lightsaber!

Don’t drink and lightsaber!

Recent weekends have all been about upgrading my son’s room from generic child’s room colours and furniture, to big-boy blue walls, mid-sleeper bed, lego display shelving and space paraphernalia. It has meant too many hours locked in the house. A jedi in training can only take so much.

I lost count of the number of times my hands, legs and head were chopped off, so it seemed a good idea that in my “spirit state” I should apply my skills to baking chocolate chip cookies (albeit from a gluten-free packet base), before returning to battle.

Now, my kids LOVE nuts (thankfully, dealing with coeliac disease is one thing, nut reactions are another), but have never taken to Peanut Butter. I decided to sneak some in to the mix, in part to add some moisture, in part to desensitise them to the taste and make sure Mummy & Daddy get to eat more recipes we enjoy too!

Interestingly, my daughter immediately picked up on the taste. It was a tiny fraction of the mix, but from a very young age I’ve encouraged her to really smell and taste things, including smelling the wine in my glass. I don’t think we encourage our kids to really sniff and taste things enough these days, and we should celebrate these skills much more to open them up to new tastes. Hopefully it means her palate for food and wine will be broader as an adult.

Even if it means they object to your cooking in the interim.

On the other hand, my own little Luke Skywalker gobbled them up unaware.

“Impulsive, is he!”

Behind the mask, the wine of the moment is a Loureiro called Muros Antigos made by Anselmo Mendes (available from The Wine Society, £8.75). It is a variant of Vinho Verde, but with more richness, perfume and tropical fruit, so it manages to remind me of summer drinking, while still matching the much more autumnal vegetable dishes we’ve been cooking recently. It will be gracing the Imperial dining table for a few weeks longer I should imagine.

Now, please excuse me, it is time for the Empire to strike back!

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