Of sweetcorn and sugar

I made spicy sweetcorn soup with bacon garnish yesterday — it was delicious! I certainly enjoyed it more than last week’s pea, lettuce and asparagus soup — the flavour felt more full-bodied and less intensely vegetable, and the spices added a pleasant background warmth.

I used tinned sweetcorn rather than frozen, because for some reason none of my regular supermarkets had the frozen stuff in stock. Bit weird, that… Also, I rarely use chipotle paste (which is what the soup recipe calls for) and didn’t think it worthwhile to buy a jar of the stuff only to use 3 teaspoons of it, so I subbed in a spicy garlic pickle that I have in stock. It worked really well, especially mixed in with the bacon for the garnish — something to note for the future!

Today was very work-light, so I took the opportunity to crack open a make-your-own-fudge kit from Christmas and cook up some chocolate brownie fudge. Results were mixed — it tasted good, but was sticky, nearly unmanageable and refused to fully set because I’d messed up on both the boiling temperature and the temperature of the fudge-wrangling surface I was using (a metal baking tray — I don’t own a suitable chopping board and using the worktop would have led to a ridiculous amount of extra cleanup). Ah well — a learning experience! Luckily, I managed to scrape up all the yummy caramel-y/syrupy goop into a mostly-set splat shape which I will re-boil (possibly with the salted-caramel ingredients from the kit — less washing up) in the next couple of days — thankfully, the formulation of the kit allows for that. I’ve reacquainted myself with information on the soft-ball stage and other stages of heating sugar (I don’t own a sugar thermometer, so this info is useful) and hopefully things should turn out a bit better next time 🙂

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