When in doubt, bake!
This week has been a bit of a roller coaster week for me. The start of it was going really well. I was having a wonderful time working in a research lab in the Haematology and Genetic Pathology department of a local hospital for my professional placement topic at Uni. It’s my first taste of doing proper scientific research and I’ve been enjoying it immensely. I was enjoying my time so much that I was starting to wonder whether medicine was the right career path for me. For those who have recently joined me on my adventures, I’ve been attempting to get into a postgraduate medical course for the last three years and each year, so far, I’ve failed to get in. Each year, more and more med hopefuls apply for a very limited number of places and, as a result, it becomes more competitive. Unfortunately, this year is no exception. By Wednesday, I was advised that I was unsuccessful in my application to not only my first preference school, but also my second and third. In previous years, I had a feeling that my application wasn’t going to be competitive enough so I wasn’t too disappointed when I was rejected. This year was different. I thought I had a decent chance, so when I received the dreaded ‘email of death’ (that’s what the med hopefuls call the rejection email), I was a little devastated. Self doubt started to creep into my psyche….am I ever going to be good enough? I needed to find something to bake, and the new issue of Delicious magazine came through with the goods – Choc-chip banana blondies. I’ve never baked blondies before, and I love the combo of banana and chocolate so this recipe was perfect to perk me up. So, after eating a couple of blondies, I sat back and reflected on what had happened. Before Wednesday, I was starting to feel conflicted about what I wanted to do next year; research or med? Now it looks like the decision has been made for me. I will do an Honours year, next year and see where that path takes me. If it works well, I may even consider doing a PhD. I’m not giving up on my aspiration to become a medical Doctor though. I’ll have another crack at it, but I think I’ll give myself a bit of break and possibly apply for 2016 entry. In times like these, I love how baking can give you moments of clarity. When in doubt, bake! This recipe makes 16 blondies.
Choc-chip banana blondies
100g unsalted butter, chopped
250g white chocolate, chopped
250g caster sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 bananas, mashed
1 tsp vanilla extract
11/3 cup (200g) plain flour
¼ tsp baking powder
¾ cup (75g) walnuts, chopped
½ cup (90g) dark chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 180˚C (fan forced). Line the base and sides of a 20cm square cake pan with baking paper.
Chuck the butter and 200g white chocolate into a large heat proof bowl, and stir over a saucepan of gently simmering water until melted. Ensure the bottom of the bowl doesn’t touch the water. White chocolate is notoriously tricky to melt because it’s not true chocolate (it has a lower melting point), and can have a tendency to split if the heat is too high. So, watch it like a hawk! Once it has all melted, remove from heat.
Pour the batter into the cake pan and bake for 35 minutes or until golden. Cool the blondies completely in the pan.
Melt the rest of the white chocolate in a heat proof bowl, using the same method as mentioned above. Cut the blondies into approximately 5cm squares. Drizzle with the melted chocolate before serving.
Note: I haven’t made any changes to the original recipe, so if you would like to see the original recipe, it’s featured in the September issue of Delicious magazine. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to find this recipe online to include a link.