I needed to do something constructive (a distraction from a situation which was winding me up quite nicely – I was “irritated” – please note that was British understatement).

So I undertook an experiment with chocolate. You see, these days I find I still find plain (dark) chocolate too bitter for my taste but most milk chocolate not chocolatey enough. I have, in the past tried melting some of each, perhaps with a tablespoon of water or a knob of butter, but with varying degrees of success. This time I decided to melt the chocolate into an already-warm liquid, namely marshmallow and milk. I doubt if I’m the first with this idea but it did work – at least other members of the family agreed. They don’t like marshmallow so the idea of the recipe did not appeal to them but when they tried some their only critical comment was that the chocolate was ‘sticky’ rather than just ‘soft’ – and then they took another piece.

Here’s what I did:

Into a microwaveable glass bowl I put four pieces of marshmallow and a splash of milk (it was what was left over in the bottle so I guess it was about three tablespoons’ worth). I microwaved it on ‘high’ for 30 seconds – that was all that was needed. Then I added a knob of butter (about an ounce? 30g?) and stirred it about a bit. Next I added eight squares (50g or nearly two ounces) each of plain chocolate (50% cocoa solids) and milk chocolate (30% cocoa solids) and stirred them in until it was obvious that the mixture had cooled a bit. I heated the mixture for a further 30 seconds (that was enough) and stirred it again until it was smooth. The mixture was soft but not too runny. I poured it onto some baking parchment (anything non stick would have done, foil even) in a tin and left it to cool. It was kept in the fridge – at least it was until it was “discovered”.

One lesson I have been learning is that it is OK to do something you enjoy without having “deserved” it. That is not a licence to be selfish but permission to take a step back from our troubles from time to time. Hence this recipe. It has the virtue of having worked and is easily repeatable.