Archive for June, 2008

If there is one food stuff I find hard to resist its pastry. Whether it be delicate and crisp puff or dense crunchy short crust, or a sweet sticky danish, pastry is my weakness.

So with some steak and kidneys (the other half thought Devilled Kidneys would be a Sunday breakfast treat, I was apprehensive but afterwards I admit, I was somewhat impressed!) what better to make than a lovely pie in the new dish complete with Blackbird that older sis bought me for b’day pressie!

Following an Ainsley Harriot recipe for Steak and brown ale pie, after much simmering and stirring, cooling and baking the delicious creation was well worth the wait and looked something like this:

The Blackbird doing his task to perfection, keeping the puff pastry crisp, yet still allowing a little of that lovely gooey stodge underneath where pastry meets the gravy…

And with the bits of pastry left over a strawberry tastic tart was thrown together, super simple:

1. roll out pastry into a sizable square for each portion

2. generously pile strawberries on top

3. Sprinkle with a little sugar

4. bake until gooey and pastry goes golden)

5. Serve with delicious home-made-ice-cream-maker strawberry ice cream. yum!

(I have no portion control, that is a dessert spoon in the bowl!)

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winning the war…

on slugs.  Yes, I finally feel that I’m cracking down on the slimy army that have been munching on my tender leaf salad crop for the last few weeks.  My options for slime control have been limited – we have a dog therefore slug pellets both chemical or organic dog friendly ones just aren’t an option – he’d just eat it up regardless.

So my tactic has been simple.  Slug Patrol.  It’s tedious, disgusting and sometimes time consuming but I think, finally, the slug population of our small garden is more under control.  So, if its been a rainy day, or in the mornings if the ground is damp and dewy out I go, armed with torch, gloves, trowel and a plastic pint glass filled with hot soapy salted water.  And in plop the slugs.  Ewwww. It’s not pretty, I don’t enjoy it, I feel cruel and rather alarmingly I found that large snails make a replusive ‘fizzing’ sound as they sink.  Yuuuk!

At least ‘Slug Patrol’ is now only a couple of times a week, with it getting warmer and sunnier, thankfully the remaining slugs have retreated to the dark damp patch near the compost bin where they can stay.  Far away from my rocket, basil and lettuce plants, which are now coming along nicely.  Yum!

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With slightly achy cheeks, I am still smirking to myself this morning as flashes of last nights trip to the theatre pop into my head. We went to see the ‘On the Bus’ tour starring Paul Zenon, Lee Mac and Harry Hill raising money for the charity The Wonderbus which aims to give old people some fun and companionship.

After a very odd but comedy busker who must have been about 80 (complete with a drum on his back, whistle, horn, accordion to name just a few!) and the balloon man apparently from Britain’s Got Talent The big guns came out.

First Lee Mac, my first live taste of this comedian. Good funny jokes and interaction with the audience that was so funny that afterwards we had an inkling that it could of been set up, but anyways we laughed, a lot, so thats the main thing!

Then the main man, Harry Hill and the Harry’s were on stage. I’ve been to see Harry Hill before so I knew to expect some randomness but, well, it was brilliant! Practically all the material was new and seemed to be just popping into his head as he was on stage as even the Harry’s were in hysterics! He flips constantly between ideas and continues jokes for far longer than you think they should last, until you laugh so much your cheeks hurt!

Comedy genius and a fantastic horn tooting finale!

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Oh Indi….

Last week, whilst having a weeks holiday by the seaside, we filled one evening with a trip down to the local cinema to see the latest Indiana Jones film With a lot of built up anticipation, being a fan of Indi you see, and with a growing atmosphere in the cinema – well, when there is only 30 seats, an organ at the front and proper velvet curtains, you can’t help but get excited in this old fashioned theater. Although a bit older Dr Jones was still great and there was some good one liners that emphasised him feeling his age. A great film for entertainment value and for kids who might not know the old Indiana Jones films so well I think they really enjoyed it. But for me, and the trouble with being a fan I suppose, I found it just lacked something compared with the other films. Maybe I’m just hung up with nostalgia, or my expectations were just not quite filled in some way. But it was just a bit too shiny, maybe too much cgi or too much Lucas fantasy to really relate it with the older films. Still, I was pleased to see Dr Jones back on the big screen and the film carries on the legend for a whole new generation of fans.

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