Some four weeks have passed since the post intimating the loss of our “raison d’être”. Sadly we still haven’t found the little bugger so we’ve come to the conclusion that it’s either escaped through the bars of its cage or been “borrowed” by person or persons unknown. Given the former is somewhat unlikely this now means a painstaking trawl through all of your blogs – yes yours – until we find the culprit.
On a brighter note the new kitchen at The Fatdog Broadcasting Corporation staff canteen is now fully operational after a month of culinary hell. The all-pervading Stygian darkness which permanently enveloped the old kitchen has been banished to whatever netherworld formed part of its belief system and in its place is a gleaming palace of eternal light…or at least that’s what the brochure says. As part of this glorious transformation a door became a window – and a window became a very large hole in the wall as the new kitchen marched through the newly formed gap into the back garden. While this total re-vamp improved the look of the kitchen no end it has still, most regretably, to have an effect on the quality of the food produced.
Here’s a quick look at the “Before” and “After” photos. To avoid confusion “Before” on the left and “After” on the right. :D
On an evenbrighter note than that of the completion of the kitchen – The Fatdog’s hobbling has lessened dramatically as her joint supplements have kicked in. Today she asked for her ball to be thrown and happily chased after it for a few minutes at the nearby country park. This is a major improvement…so fingers crossed. Even I have seen an improvement this week with the ache beginning to recede from my right calf. Ok it still is present in the rest of the leg but again this is a major step as stairs become less of a pain. Hopefully we’ll get a decent walk this week to see how we are both shaping up and give me an idea what might be possible for us to achieve in the coming month.
On the blogging front we ain’t making a lot of headway into developing a new direction. There have been a couple of ideas kicking about but I’ve yet to assess their long term viability. The disruption caused by a month of kitchen re-construction was not conducive to creative writing…only writing where the phrase “Oh bugger!” would have cropped up on a regular basis. This manifestation of irritation and despair was my regular companion as I searched for yet another missing item in the morasse covering the dining room floor that once constituted my kitchen. Thankfully that inconvenience is now but a thing of the past – so at last we can get down to more serious matters…like writing infinite pages of self-indulgent drivel. :D
Taking yet another quantum leap in blog content I thought I’d tell you about my retirement present from the fine band of colleagues (friends would be a better description) with whom I worked in the grand old days of the Central Region Bridges Section. With the dissolution of the local government Regions some 15 years ago the section was disbanded but it is slowly reforming in the ranks of the retired. Since we broke up in 1996 we still meet, at minimum, once a year and have as a group attended weddings, emigration farewells and (more sadly) funerals of family and other work colleagues.
Anyway, the latest celebration was to mark my retirement and the group thought it would be a damn fine idea to give me a vip ticket to the BBC “The Good Food Show” in the SECC in Glasgow. J and I had a great time. This trip should be viewed in the context of my intense excitement due to the kitchen renovation currently underway at the headquarters of The Fatdog Broadcasting Corporation. The Man Who Does (husband of the Cupcake Queen) is busy installing our new kitchen my new kitchen (J needs a map and compass to locate it).
Me, being the chef in the household, purchased the mother-of-all-blenders (Magimix), heavily discounted as it was the display model; a plancha (Spanish flat griddle plate) for use on the induction hob and enough black latex to become of interest to the vice squad. I have been told that I must stress that the latex is in the form of cookware.
As part of the present my friends had bought me a front row seat for a cookery demonstration by the well known chef James Martin, whose live “Saturday Morning Kitchen” has been a runaway success and a favourite of both mine and J’s. They guys were well meaning; and I did have a great view; and I enjoyed the demonstration enormously but..
…they had managed to place me in the middle of a whole row of adoring lady fans! How thrilled was I, as I cringed in my seat. I did my best to look adoring but I was definitely the odd one out. As one they all turned to look at me, trying to determine just how odd.
To put myself back on a more manly tack we headed towards the back of the exhibition hall where the Arbroath Smokie stand was busy doing what it does best…smokin’. A blue fishy haze enveloped the arena as the beech and oak “smoker” chugged away, gassing the nearby students of the Nick Nairn Cook School as they prepared dishes at their temporary cook-stations.
We’d never had a “smokie” before, assuming wrongly that they were like kippers. They are in fact smoked haddock and far better to eat than I imagined. We bought a couple from the stand of the legendary producer Iain R. Spink which I flaked and mixed into a leafy salad pinned together by slivers of fennel and apple. Crackin’ stuff.
As for the black latex…I believe I get it back after the Procurator Fiscal’s office has decided if there’s a case to answer.