What’s Cooking?

Evening all.

I really want to do some witty recap blog, having left you all at a moment of great sadness etc. instead I’m going to try to recap in some intelligent and witty fashion and will fail. It’s whilst I’m exploring more of the best of gay cinema, namely a film starring Kurt from Hollyoaks and a Dr from Holby City years ago. It’s awful. It features the creepiest child actor I have ever seen.

So post my grandad’s funeral was an odd old day. Family I’d never met turned up, and spoke a dialect I’d never heard before. Barely audible. They told a story about potatoes in a restaurant in Dublin that I still don’t understand, not least because it was boring as hell and never went anywhere.

On the home front, I’ve killed a billion plants. I’m still not sure I’ve configured the kitchen cupboards to their maximum efficiency, but we carry on regardless. The bathroom is coming along, bedroom next but as can be expected the cash flow isn’t exactly a steady stream at the moment. Nothing much has been going on over the last few months. I’ve entered that monotonous period known as “marathon training”. That had meant over 3 months of running around 5 days a week, leading to a Saturday long run, the distance of which has been a killer week in week out. It’s really hard to imagine how hard 13 miles were in retrospect now I’ve plodded through 22 miles. Berlin Marathon is only 17 days away and I’m struggling to imagine that day when I’m not rearranging my life around miles to be run. Can’t eat after 11am to ensure I can run at lunch, saving my holiday so I can do my midweek long runs. No booze Fridays, Saturday nights out cancelled or reduced to less active pursuits as dancing is too hard after a 3 hour run. Summer has been and gone and it’s hardly been a rock and roll one. But it’s been great. The house is great. The dog is fabulous, eating 2500 calories and burning off 1400 of them is great.

We holidayed in France this year. Pete’s brother invited us to join their family holiday in their holiday home in Ardeche. It was great. Sun, not sea as it’s inland, food, wine and my kindle. It was a low cost holiday, although due to a power surge it cost me replacement charge on an iPad and an iPhone. So really not cheap as a result but such is life. My dream of a Julia Child-esque food epiphany didn’t come to fruition. We existed on a pork heavy diet. It was a tad frustrating.

We holidayed with Pete’s family, again something we hadn’t done. Two children under 6 to entertain, 8 mouths to feed in a very small town. Competing demands and desires re holidays. Pete’s family are readers, enjoying the quiet and solitude of reading novels. The children enjoyed Peppa Pig magazine, Loom bands and trying to shove cheese crackers into my belly button. But I rose to the challenge. I became the daft uncle, fondly thought of and readily harassed from breakfast to bed time.

Lots of other things going on. Work so manic I often feel like a little cry or scream. I take solace in dinner. I cooked up a shepherds pie including lambs liver today. Delicious. I’m boldly exploring the world of offal. Daphne is to blame- she loves chicken liver. It reminds me of when Connie Brittan from Nashville is pregnant in American Horror Story and eats the raw sweetbreads. I think I’m trying to be braver. In a world of affordable luxury, I should indulge. And chicken livers are beautiful.

Plenty More by Yotam Ottolenghi arrived today. I’m so thrilled to have my paws on it. And I’m thrilled that it has the crushed lentil with cumin and tahini recipe in it. My constant print outs of it are scattered across my kitchen, smeared and mucky. A book is a sturdier friend. I made it last week with peanut butter in lieu of tahini. Delicious. Smooth. To my mind a bit, dare I say, better. But I’m a peanut butter-aholic.

I have another discovery. Ben and Jerrys Peanut Butter Cup ice cream. Reeses cups in a peanut butter ice cream. Now PB can go wrong. Sickly, claggy, too much. But this is smooth and tasty. Rich and delicious. But trumping this is Waitrose Italian Espresso Gelato. It’s heaven. May I permit you to spoon a little extra thick double cream on it and crunch up a Lotus Biscoff biscuit over it. Chunks and crumbs are best. It’s like a cappuccino in a bowl. Trust me, its a winner.

Daphne is well. She had a hair appointment again last week with Wendy in Hillsborough. Looks beautiful.

Just found myself sobbing with Mary Berry at her families hardship on Who Do You Think You Are. I’m rather emotional at the moment. I’ve cried at everything. I saw that video of Christian the lion being raised by gays in London, going back to the wild and then seeing th the next year and embracing them. Good heavens. Floods just typing it. But never fear, constant footage of Alex Salmond and Alistair Darling’s eye brows sobers me.

Right. Bed time for me. I do hope all are well here in web world, and less weepy. I’ll be ok when I’m less tired!

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