I love to tell stories. It is probably evident from my posts. And while telling stories to my boys, I like to use small props, modulate my voice, and even run around to act out the story. My elder son and I enjoy these story sessions, although he doesn’t have much patience with long stories. So, one Sunday afternoon, when hubby was away for a meeting (yes! Sunday afternoon!) and the little one (thankfully!) decided to take a nap, I sat my older one down to a story.
Just as I started, my neighbour’s kid and a couple of other kids in the block walked in and so we invited them all to join us for the story session. So, the story was about an ancient sage and his two wives, both sisters, one good and the other evil. And how a twist of fate makes the good one become a slave to the evil one for 500 years. At last, the good wife bears a divine child who, with the blessings from lord Vishnu, frees his mother from slavery. At the fag end of the story, the sage reappears and asks his evil wife to apologise to the good one.
I really enjoyed narrating the story, but was totally unprepared for the volley of questions that followed. Did people those days live for 500 years? How? Why? What all must the evil sister have done to torture her slave sister? Why did the sage not help his good wife right at the beginning? If the sister who became the slave was such a good woman, why did God not help her? How did the just-born child manage to free his mother from slavery while his gifted father, the sage couldn’t?
I’m not sure the good lady in the story struggled with her slavery as much as I did trying to answer the children’s unending questions! Whenever I find myself in a spot over how to tackle any difficult situation, I let food do the honours. Take this for example:
Son: Amma, where did you keep the new Avengers activity book we bought yesterday?
Me: (After trying hard to remember and not succeeding): Ikshu, do you want a piece of chocolate cake? Here, take a slice.
Son: Thanks ma. It’s yummy. What about that Aven….
Me: Actually, why don’t you go over to Shravan’s house to play for some time? I’ll pack a couple of cake slices for him too.
Son: OK ma! Bye!
I wish I’d had this chocolate cake ready the day I narrated the story – the indulgence would have diverted their curious minds to chocolate!
This cake is seriously good. I’ve made it on quite a few occasions – it uses sourdough discard after all, and one is ALWAYS looking for different ways to use up the discard than to, well, discard it – and I’ve got rave reviews for it. It is moist and tastes very rich and the texture is close to that of a cakey brownie.
I used this recipe from King Arthur Flour, but skipped the icing. I also tend to add a handful of chopped dark chocolate to the batter. The other changes I make in the recipe:
-Swap whole wheat flour for APF
-Halve the recipe and bake it in an 8” x 8” pan
-Use granulated brown sugar/cane sugar
-Use flax goop in place of egg (I tbsp. flax seed powder mixed with 2.5 tbsp of warm water and set aside for 10 minutes)
Well, next time you refresh your starter, you know what you need to do with your discard. Move over sourdough pancakes!
This is part of the Bake-a-thon 2017