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The Chequers (Brownies)

Today was a very lovely day. My brother Jay took me, Billy and Dylan out for lunch. Just a few miles from where we live is a gorgeous little gastro pub called The Chequers and we have been going there for years. Billy was 15 when he worked there to earn extra pocket money, Jesse also did a one day stint but decided it wasn't for him as when one or two of the oriental delights he was meant to be serving to a customer fell from the plate and he kicked them into a bush!!!

Anyway, i've had lots of lovely days, evenings, birthdays and normal days spent here. Saturday morning they serve the most gorgeous brunch, I hope you know what I mean when I say it is a clean fry up! No fat swimming on the plate, just lovely juicy sausages, nice meaty bacon, good fat toms, beans in a little pot (don't you just hate bean juice all over the place?????). Lovely white china tea pots ( I love white china all fresh and clean looking) and nicely cooked farm fresh eggs, yummy.

In the Winter it's as snug as a bug in a rug. Newspapers, roaring fire, just so so cosy. It's equally as welcoming in Summer as there is an amazing decking area out the back for the more formal dining, then a gorgeous garden for bar meals and snacks where my boys and nieces have spent many happy times. But to top it all it faces the most wonderful matching green.

When Dylan was younger I spent many contented Friday evenings watching him play cricket while sipping a lovely long fruity Pimms. November 5th wouldn't be the same without a visit to The Chequers and I don't think i've missed one in 15 years. Boxing day, the Hunt leaves from the Green and is something quite spectacular to see. I haven't got shares in this place but I genuinely love it.

Today we sat out the back on the decking under the canopy. You always see somebody you know and I think that is a sign of a well run place when customers return time and time again. I saw my lovely pilates trainer Suzi with her beautiful little girl Lily. Billy and Jay also knew other people there.The staff are always friendly and the service is very good, there's something for everyone on the menu.
Well enough about them, lets get back to the job in hand, because after all this is meant to be a cooking blog. For years i've baked but my immediate family have never really taken much notice. My friends on the other hand loved the freshly baked goods with a passion but not so much Rich, the boys & my brother. Until earlier this year when they realised I was quite good (all will become apparent in a few weeks) so since then they like to sample my different bakes, which suits me, as I love trying out new bakes and these are the people who are in my life mostly.
So today I knew my brother was coming here early for a little sit in the sunshine before lunch and obviously something with a cup of coffee. I've wanted to try pistachio and choc chip brownies for ages and had a recipe in my head, so I knew he'd be a willing guinea pig. He said they were the best cakey thing he'd tasted, so I'll share with you.

100 g dark chocolate broken
20 g milk choc broken up
115g butter
300 g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla paste
2 large eggs
140 g plain flour
30g cocoa powder
75 g pistachios
80 g white choc chips

Grease and line 7inch tin preheat oven to 170

Melt chocolate and butter in micro, give a good stir. Mix in sugar and vanilla paste, add eggs, sift in flour and cocoa powder fold in. Add nuts and choc, I like white chocolate chunks cut from a bar.

Bake in oven for 35-40 mins. test with a cocktail stick. Leave to cool serve either as a cake or with ice cream, for simple chocolate sauce, Mix 100 g choc, with 100 ml of double cream, melt in micro, mix and pour all over. YUMMA