Saturday, 1 December 2012

We Should Cocoa - Christmas Special

Well, we had some fantastic entries for last month's bread theme and many thanks to Nazima of Franglais Kitchen for hosting. I shall add a link here (as well as the We Should Cocoa page) when she has posted the round-up. On the scale of good cop bad cop though, it was a toughy, so I thought I'd play good cop for once and let you all off lightly for Christmas.

It's the first day of winter, according to the Meteorological Office, so what could be better than something spicy and comforting to warm up the cockles of our hearts? Originating in Sri Lanka, cinnamon comes from the inner bark of a tropical asian tree Cinnamomum zeylanicum. It was highly prized by ancient cultures and was more treasured than gold, a gift fit for Kings and gods. It is thus not surprising that in Europe, it is heavily associated with Christmas and used to mull wine and cider, as well as in biscuits, cakes and puddings. It came to Britain via Arab spice traders in the early 15th century.

Cinnamon Quills
It's a particularly good spice to be using at this time of year as it is said to help ward of colds and flu as well as alleviate some of their symptoms. It is purported to have a number of other benefits too, including boosting memory capability - I obviously don't eat enough of it or have I said that already?

Cinnamon is one of my favourite spices, with its warm and sweet aromatic character that goes with so many different things. I use it in curries, on my porridge, sprinkled over hot chocolate and of course in baking. I recently posted these chocolate and cinnamon rolls which were super delicious but another cinnamon bake that stands out in my memory as being particularly good was this cinnamon chocolate chip cake. I do hope you will all join me in cooking up a storm of delicious chocolate and cinnamon delights during this merry month of December.

16 comments:

  1. perfect... this will be answered in so many ways by many of us over the festive period i'm sure... a lovely one to ease us in to Christmas, thank you x

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    1. It's just to show that like sugar and spice, I can be nice sometimes ;-)

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  2. Cinnamon is one of my favourite spices too. I'll try and come up with something.

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    1. Oh good, I hope you do and look forward to seeing what it is :)

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  3. Perfect Choclette and one challenge that I will be entering, as I adore cinnamon - so sorry my pain au chocolat did not get blogged in time for last month's WSC - oh well, will be entering for December! Karen

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    1. Shame about your pain au chocolat Karen as I bet they were delicious. It's very hard to keep up with them all I know, but I hope you manage this one.

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  4. Ooh, interesting one Choclette... I'm a bit on the fence with cinnamon - sometimes I love it and sometimes I can totally leave it. Although I do consistently love mixed spice which usually has a large cinnamon component. Not that I have anything in mind but would a recipe with mixed spice be acceptable, or do you want straight cinnamon?

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    1. C, it's Christmas and I want to be kind. How about making up your own spice mix to include cinnamon - that would definitely count?

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  5. Couldn't agree more, cinnamon is fabulous! I love it on my cereal and porridge too. Will deff try hard to contribute to this months event.

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    1. That would be fabulous Katie. I know you will produce something fantastic - no pressure ;-)

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  6. Oh, wonderful!! I love cinnamon and chocolate together and have already picked the recipe - another one of those I've been meaning to make for a long, long time now! I like how the challenge pushes me to finally make all these recipes I've collected. :-D

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  7. Right then ... thinking cap on!

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  8. I have the will because I agree on the chocolate and cinnamon combination - one cake comes to mind immediately - will just have to see if our holidays allow me the energy that I am hoping for so I can participate

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  9. Dear Choclette I've just emailed you the link of my latest post! I love the Cinnamon an Chocolate combination!

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  10. Have emailed the link to my we should cocoa Lebkuchen Christmas biscuits blog post, hope I've done everything right, please let me know if I need to add anything.

    Thanks.

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  11. Hi Choclette, Here's my link, do I need to email it too? http://www.kaveyeats.com/2012/12/a-quick-easy-speculoos-mascarpone-pancake-cake.html

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