Saturday, December 23, 2006

Early Start - Much Warmer

Made an early start, to beat the crowds, and everybody had the same idea. Picture 1 is of Morrisons Car Park at 8.10am. I only had my old Casio and no tripod but my PanoramaPlus 2 programme seems to have made quite a respectable job. One of the chaps who collects the shopping-trolleys told me that at the 7.30am opening time there was a 50 yard queue. It was busy inside but plenty of staff and, as I only needed a handbasket of things we forgot yesterday, I was through the system like lightning.

We thoroughly enjoyed 'Rick Stein cooks for the Japanese Ambassador'. He had previously visited Tokyo to get a feel for the subject and sampled loads of excellent fish dishes. It pleased me to learn that the green-paste, a small match-head sized bit of once nearly blew my head off with Sushi is called Wasabi and manufactured from wild green horseradish root. And it's supposed to be that hot, so if you are ever served a bright green paste with a Japanese fish dish beware!! To cut slender slivers of raw fish with a single smooth slice there is a specially designed knife. At the Japanese Embassy Rick's menu looked superb and he had, wisely, enlisted the services of two expert Japanese chefs. He freely acknowledged their contribution and, at the end, when he was accepting praise he duly introduced them. The meal was obviously a triumph and the Ambassador and his guests were trenchermen of the first rank. Rick Stein is popular with us because he knows his stuff and is a real gent. And no bosom-waving or pouting at all !

Before leaving yesterday's hoar frost pictures this team-effort by the spiders demanded publication.

Their must be an logical explanation as to why spiders construct their webs in such unpromising places in 'catching fly' terms. I fully accept Sky's 'because they are beautiful' concept but perhaps some passing zoological-correspondent could add to it?

I exchanged very pleasant e-mails and cards with Rob and feel sure that, when he has the time (he is still working poor soul) he will fill the slot of photographic-correspondent more ably than I can. It is very nice to be back in touch.

Bungus and I will just have to disagree abolut Nigella's charms - at least it means that we shan't come to blows over the distribution of her favours. It is grande finale night for the Strictly Come Dancing contestants tonight - starting I believe at 5.45pm so we must have all jobs done and out of the way by then.

...."I'm sure I have forgotten something"

1 comment:

bungus said...

Much warmer you say! Well, I am sure the thermometer will support your view, and there was no frost or ice, but any walker (and this is not just my view) would tell you that today was by far the coldest day of the week. I even had to check under my fleece to be sure that I had not forgotten my pully. It’s the damp as does it.

I simple do not understand why anyone would leave their shopping so late, instead of doing it at 10 o’clock last night. Our neighbour told me that cars were going round and round and round to find parking spaces at Sainsbury’s this morning. I remember Sandra going with a friend, some years ago, for opening time on Christmas Eve, only to find that all the trolleys had been taken.
Stephanie arrived today with half a box of veg that David had been given by a grateful contractor. We now have leeks X 2, Brussels X 3, apples X 4, onions X 3 and carrots X 3, apart from cabbage, swede, brussels and cauli in addition to the red cabbage and parsnips already prepared. It looks like lots of soup and bubble & squeak next week.

I like the bewebbed fence picture, when enlarged. Them there spiders are certainly busy little beggars but, as you suggest, they must be struggling for prey at this time of year; so I suppose all they can do is make Xmas decorations.

I cannot deny Nigella’s good looks but as a cookery adviser she has certainly gone right off the rails.
But most cookery programmes now are just ‘entertainment’ (inc Rick Stein) although the Saturday morning show usually has some good bits.
Three courses for my afternoon/evening meal today. Fresh mussels with vinegar and wholemeal bread & butter for starters; toast with peanut butter and beetroot for main course; and choccy biccies to finish. Very satisfactory, esp the mussels, which are a rare treat.

Having seen that there was nothing on telly tonight, I watched Channel 4.
‘God Gave Rock N Roll’ was surprisingly rather tedious (only 2 seconds of Mahalia Jackson) but there were some interesting snippets, particularly, but obviously, about Robert Johnson and Elvis, but also (which I new nothing of) about antichrist church burning in Norway to celebrate heavy metal’s pagan connections.
‘The Lost Gospel of Judas’ promised much but was extenuated with frequent repetitition of dramatised reconstructions, esp the Gethsemane betrayal several times. Worthy but not nearly as interesting as the two minutes devoted to Mithras on ‘QI’ last night.
I could not stay with the station for ‘Speed’ (although I would probably rather have watched my taping of ‘Tombstone’ anyway) as it would have meant missing ’Match of the Day’ on BBC1.