Milk chocolate is not generally believed to have been invented until the nineteenth century, by clever Swiss chocalatier M Daniel Peter. He combined a form of Nestle condensed milk with chocolate to produce the first stable (and deeply addictive) chocolate bar. But in 1689, Sir Hans Sloane, Irish physician, botanist and founder of the British Museum, visited Jamaica where he observed the locals drinking Spanish chocolate mixed with spices and water. Finding this ‘nauseous’, he developed a popular recipe for ‘drinking chocolate’ by adding milk. It was at first manufactured and sold by apothecaries as a medicine but, by the nineteenth century, Cadbury’s Brothers themselves sold tins of Sloane’s Drinking Chocolate.
Eighteenth century chocolate pot with wooden mill to mix the chocolate and water
MILK CHOCOLATE RECIPE
~ Mars Bar Sauce ~
(I understand a Mars Bar is called a Milky Way in the United States)
This very easy sauce is perfect for hot weather, as a topping for either ice cream or as a dip for fresh fruit. Take one chopped Mars Bar and about 35ml of cream per adult. Place in a pan over a very low heat until the Mars Bars melt. Continue to heat until it turns shiny. Serve over ice cream, cake or fruit. The same method also makes a thinner but healthier sauce using milk.
BOOK REVIEW - Milk Chocolate A Fatal Inversion by Barbara Vine
My choice for a Milk Chocolate read is a wonderfully enjoyable summer book, Ruth Rendell writing as Barbara Vine’s A Fatal Inversion. Set in the idyllic hot summer of 1976, a summer I remember vividly, it is about a group of young people who experiment with freedom and moral boundaries in a manor house deep in the English countryside. When nineteen year old Adam inherits isolated Wyvis Hall he invites a motley group of drifters to share his inheritance with chilling consequences. We meet Adam, Rufus, Shiva, Vivien and Zosie as carefree naïve teenagers, and twelve years later, those who survive have become careworn, guilt-ridden adults.
Vine’s plotting is masterly, psychologically astute and utterly surprising to the very last page. With echoes of Milton’s Paradise Lost and More’s Utopia (the Hall is nicknamed ‘Ecalpemos’, an anagram of ‘Someplace’) the dénouement is a beautiful series of twists that comment slyly on justice and fate. As for the food, the era is perfectly rendered by bottles of cheap Bulgarian wine, hash cakes and ‘the 1976 version of a takeaway, a couple of meat pies, apples, Coke’. A shocking murder takes place, but I believe the greatest fictional pleasures are amplified by a frisson of fear…
PART 3 – WHITE CHOCOLATE – NEXT WEEK….
A huge thank you to Rebecca Mascull for inviting me to take part in the The Chocolate Challenge.
I have tagged two new writers to take on the Chocolate Challenge, and will tweet and post their links when they are ready. They are:
LOUISA TREGER, author of THE LODGER, The first biographical novel about Dorothy Richardson, peer of Virginia Woolf, lover of H.G. Wells, and central figure in the emergence of modernist fiction. The Lodger is a beautifully intimate novel that is at once an introduction to one of the most important writers of the 20th century and a compelling story of one woman tormented by unconventional desires.
TESSA ARLEN, is author of a mystery series set in Britain before the Great War. The first in the series, DEATH OF A DISHONOURABLE GENTLEMAN, is a story of revenge, blackmail and betrayal. In this enchanting debut sure to appeal to fans of Downton Abbey, Tessa Arlen draws readers into a world exclusively enjoyed by the rich, privileged classes and suffered by the men and women who serve them.