Thursday, September 04, 2008

A quiet, cool day - Swiss Chard Soup

Picture 1 is from yesterday and features the Cliff Inn at Crich where, if I didn't mention it, the chip cobs are excellent. We are always made very welcome and it is a traditional 'pubby' Derbyshire pub with small separate rooms, and in the winter open fires.

Today started off well, and I collected Y from the tram just after 2pm. The London train and connections had been trouble free so she was quite early.

This afternoon I decided to make my Swiss Chard soup (Bungus brought me a plastic bag containing a pound and a half of Chard - the sort with the red stalks). I found a good recipe on the web but there was roughly twice as much as I needed so I shared with Helen & Julian - feeling Bungus would rather the residue go to a good home than be wasted.

The result is flavoursome and different. Y feels it a little 'earthy' but it appeals to me. Picture 2 illustrates.

Unfortunately, after lunch, I suffered a bad attack of leg-ache and unsteadiness and I had to ring Helen to say I couldn't manage EPS this evening, the first meeting of the new season - and to offer my apologies.


Bungus ..... I think Lapwing, Plover and Pee-whit are all the same thing. I am willing to yield to Roy's expert opinion though.

The regularity of August's wetness was news to me too. One has childhood memories of idyllic sun-drenched School holidays - but it probably chucked it down each year and we never noticed.

My ostrich aversion cannot be due to their similarity to dogs or horses because I wasn't aware that they are. And eating horse/dog wouldn't offend me at all. The former is eaten on the Continent and the latter in the Orient I think.

The illustrated tour of the new Kings Mill buildings is keenly awaited and blog-space will be reserved.

Jill ..... We've all tried these strange eco-dishes I think. David tells a childhood horror story of when I cooked Skate Wings and insisted they eat the result !

Y wanted to watch the Jane Austen thing too - but it wasn't on at Palmers Green and she didn't like to ask...... She will be pleased to learn she avoided being irritated.

Your iKnitLondon sounds so attractive. I hope not too many stitches are slipped due to alcohol intake.

The way Helen described the Cliff Inn 'Ladies' confirmed your view that it was excellent. Well - 'interesting' at least.


It is a shame I have been more-or-less immobilised because I have commitments I want to attendto at the weekend. One of the problems is this 'edema' or 'dropsy' as it used to be called. A worrying characteristic is that my legs and ankles are about twice as bad as those illustrated in Y's Medical Encyclopedia. I'd publish a picture if it wasn't for the worry of causing nightmares and people to go off their food and take to the bottle.

Sleep tight - catch you tomorrow - tell you all about Google Chrome - it's brilliant




Incy Wincy said...

could I ask that readers of this blog place their hands together and raise their eye's to the sky and ask for dry weather on saurday afternoon, as it is stretching my imagination to much to do 30+ photo's in a 10ft x 8ft chapel.
If successful I could perhaps do a talk at EPS?
I don't think the lapwing is called a plover, as there are lots of plover's called plover's as in Kentish, little ringed, golden etc.
As an ostrich can run at over 40mph how do they catch it to eat it? As for eating dogs, I wish someone would eat the one 2 doors from me.
Hope the legs get better quick

Jill said...

Accordig to my book, the lapwing is also called 'green plover'.

I would ask for a dry day on Saturday too - am going out all day to an exhibition, don't want to get there drenched. Once inside I don't care.....

Bad timing G with a busy week-end. Do you think you were up on your feet more because Y was away? Have you tried those flight sock things, they are supposed to stop swollen legs/ankles, as well as DVT? Water tablets? (which are a great nuisance, more so to women in towns that men out in the country!)

The Swiss Chard soup looks sort of interesting. I don't think I know what swiss chard tastes like. I have eaten horse during the war, can't remember it really. I would not fancy dog or cat at all.... As a child and growing we used to have a lot or rabbit, both roasted and stewed,I was very fond of it, but that seems to have disappeared completely. The pub where daughter works does jugged hare sometimes.

My friend came home from hospital this morning, on one stick, I am so pleased for her. Medically I think they have done well, but she was so miserable in there, mostly over small things which could so easily have been put right. The ward TV being on 16 hrs a day, no-one really listening, my friend was told 'it helped the staff learn English'. Her bedside light hadn't worked for three days, so no reading for her in the evenings, 'maintenance was very busy'. And the awful food, not enough of it either, she has lost at least half a stone, clothes are hanging on her.

Hope the feet are better, G.

bungus said...

The Cliff Inn looks attractive and welcoming.

Jessica started back to school yesterday, in year 9 now (3rd year) and was happily astonished to be told that she and a few others are to take their ‘O’ Level Exam in Food Technology THIS YEAR, ie, 2 year’s early. Under Sandra’s tuition I am as sure as I can be that she will pass well.

Consultation today at City Hospital.
Transport came about 8.30 so I arrived about an hour and a half early.
I went for a blood test first but, unusually, I was second in the queue (sometimes nearly 20th) and actually reached the clinic over an hour early. Nurse Karen spotted me and took me straight in for the prelims (weigh-in – steady - blood pressure – a bit high – and pee in a bottle) and I had only done a couple of crossword clues when called in to see the doctor (yet again one I had not seen before but very affable and efficient). After that I only had to wait ten minutes or so for transport (same driver that took me in) and was home (on this foulest of days weatherwise) by 11.00.

So I made some of the Manxman’s tomato soup and then my ostrich pasties. The pastry could, in my view, have done with a bit more salt but otherwise I was more than happy with it although I had to use all marge as there was no lard in the fridge (I made 8 jam tarts with the surplus). Nothing wrong with the pasty filling but, for me, a bit disappointing; I like real flavour, such as gaminess, and it was lacking.


The Cliff Inn looks very pleasant and welcoming.

Glad the chard wasn’t wasted. I think I would have expected an ‘earthy’ taste, which can be very pleasant. You were right to dispose of the excess as you did. Emma sent us a recipe to try so I now rather hope she will bring some more.

If your objection to eating ostrich is not squeamishness, what is it? A trencherman like yourself should have no qualms.
I think I would fairly readily eat horse (although not seek it out or slaughter and butcher it myself) but sentiment would put me off dog unless very hungry and no choice. I would, however, have no compunction about eating rat and have tried squirrel (like tough rabbit in my view).

Dan was teling us last weekend that he and Emma had been to Norfolk for the day during his holiday from work and had eaten skate at a fish & chip shop in Cromer. Delicious was his verdict and, although I have not had any for some years, I feel the same. Apart from having a good flavour, being a member of the shark family it is so easy to eat, having no bones.

I refrained from submitting a photo of my ‘lost’ big toe nail on the same aesthetic grounds as you with your giant legs, likewise, my scar. Some things are better kept under one's hat or sock or 'shot'.

I think ostrich is fairly low in everything; it can’t fly after all.
But fat and cholesterol are the obvious lacks Remarkable that it tastes good really because fat gives flavour.

I have an aversion to 19C novels and never read them, having given up after chapter one of several Dickens' novels and becoming totally exasperated by ‘North & South’ despite some good passages. That said, I do enjoy some costume dramatisations, eg ‘Lark rise to Candleford’.
I thought there was some lovely dialogue in ‘Lost in Austen’, esp Mr Bennet, and generally enjoyed the programme.

Gardeners go on about Swiss Chard; I think they must get a kickback. I would say that, in taste, it is probably nearer to spinach than anything else, but coarser. It is said that the ribs of the leaves can be boiled separately and eaten like asparagus. They’d tell you anything.

I think rabbit is delicious (a farmer friend used to bring us half a dozen at a time) and I am very fond of game (hare is my favourite food). We can obtain it so cheaply (eg, two brace of pheasant, a brace of partridge and a hare for under £10) from another farmer friend, who organises shoots on his land, because the price offered by game dealers is so low it often isn’t worthwhile going to market.

Incy Wincy:
Don’t fancy your chances of dry weather at the weekend. If you can get odds I should have a saving bet on it raining.

Google tells me the Peewit is a Lapwing, so that’s good enough for me!
But the Plover and Lapwing are related, so Peewit could have been a North Notts name for the Plover.

Cows can run quite fast too and ostriches are similarly curious. So I think if you do something mysterious they will come over to investigate you can then strangle them – easy!
We have a couple of very noisy Alsatians next door (nasty neighbour) who charge the fence when anyone goes up the garden; or they did until I discovered that a spray of water (more reliable than throwing apples at their noses) turns them back – just a sight of the bottle works now. I think you are right; a barbecue is called for.

Helen C. said...

Thanks for the chard Bungus - we had it boiled as an accompaniment to stuffed marrow. I would say that it's much nicer than spinach which I only eat if its well disguised e.g. in curry!

Graham, I hope you will be up and about again by the week-end. Last night's EPS talk on Japan was quite interesting though I would say, from my own point of view, it was not among the best we've had.

I watched the 'Lost in Austen' programme which was a bit odd but also had some good jokes such as Elizabeth calling her modern counterpart 'Miss Spencer' because she'd seen the name tags in her underwear!

mannanan said...

Graham....just doing my weekly check in and I'm in your debt for mentioning chard.....Her in doors last week went to the local farmers market here in Ramsey for the weekly veg and came back with a right variety including a very red rhubarb. Well after cooking this rhubarb with an added pound of sugar she said it tasted odd and offered me a taste which I did and I had to agree with her. I said are you sure it was rhubarb and she said yes....She showed me the leaves and I said are you sure it isn't chard. Now for the life of me I can't ever recall having chard before but it looks as if I was right 'cause after reading your piece about chard soup I googled and right enough she was in fact trying to make a chard crumble...A bit different I suppose....Anyway keep up the good work...Take care..Mannanan