Friday, September 13, 2013

One Meatball

I made a Jamie leftover thing and it turned out delicious, however, I became confused and started with one recipe only to finish with another, in the same dish. Moreover, I bastardised it, so I'm reluctant to give Jamie the credit. He can have a bit of the credit, but not all of it. On the telly I'd seen him do a Korean stir fry with left over brisket. It looked nice: I had leftover pork, and it was obvious that the dish would work with pork just as well as beef, probably better.

I shredded up all my left over pork, it didn't look like much, so I chopped up a few mushrooms; it still didn't look like much, so I chopped up half a cabbage, and some spinach. It looked delicious even before I cooked it. I took Jamie's advice on the spice mix and whizzed some garlic, chilli, ginger, turmeric and fresh coriander into a required the addition of a fair bit of water to make it into an actual paste. The aroma was worth the price of admission on its own. That was more or less it. I chucked the paste into a pan, let it sizzle a bit, then threw in the 'shrooms, and the cabbage, then the spinach, let it all sizzle and pop for a bit, then chucked over the leftover pork gravy, that I was no longer going to have with mash, and some coconut milk, made from a block of creamed coconut, and let it all bubble away. I may have chucked a bit of soy sauce in, can't remember.

At this point, I decided to open the book and check the recipe. Fuck me, I wasn't doing Korean stir fry, I was doing beef rendang, except it was pork rendang, with a few minor Cwmbran interpolations. I continued as if nothing had happened and I was making Korean stir fry all along, which consisted of boiling up some rice and chucking that in with the rest. When the rice went in, it started to take on the appearance of an old fashioned Vesta biryani, so I chucked some sultanas in, just for a laugh. Turned out to be an inspired decision.

We scoffed it while watching the latest Breaking Bad, or the Mrs scoffed it, I wasn't that hungry as I had cooked the eldest some sausage and chips, but he was out, so, taking Jamie's entreaties to be frugal on board, I scoffed that, with a couple of eggs. I watched with increasing dismay as the Mrs stealthily went back to the trough, for more Cwmbran Rendang Stir Fry Bollocks, 3 times.

I was hoping to have some for the next days dinner at work. Luckily, she left enough, which is how I know it was truly delicious. I'll try and make it again, but I doubt it will turn out the was probably that delicious pork gravy that was the kicker, and I won't have that to hand very often. In the end, it's as much as about the energy you put in as the ingredients you use, and the universe was smiling upon me that day.

I have also utilised the sauce I made for the Crap Chicago Pizza through the week, once for a very simple coating for some left over chicken, fried up with some mushroom and spinach for a pasta sauce, and also for a simple sauce for some slightly spiced prawns, again with pasta. I offered the daughter pasta again last night but she declined, and opted for poached eggs on toast. There's gratitude. I bet Jamie doesn't have to contend with that.

I watched the Jamie episode with the pork the other day. It showed that, while his heart might be in the right place, his brain isn't. For a start, the joint cost 28 quid. He justified it, like the berk who claimed a whole salmon was frugality itself, by saying that it would last a week. I have 3 observations on this. One, if you are skint, or poor, or yer finances have, one way or another, gone down the shitter, it is highly unlikely that you will have 28 quid to spend on a single joint of meat. Second, did you see the size of the fucker? You would need an industrial sized fridge just to keep it in... an ordinary household fridge would not be able to house a lump of pork that big. Third, no one in their right mind could cope with pork every day for a week, no matter how often you bling the fucker up with a bit of galangal.

I'm not convinced Jamie is enjoying this series; it looks like little more than a marketing exercise on behalf of his Uncle Ben. He doesn't really seem all that enthused by any of his recipes, he doesn't even provide many recipes, and the thing is padded out with idiocy. He has some inarticulate "mate" try one of his creations, looking very uncomfortable, before declaring it amazing, and also goes around to some chumps house to teach them how not to waste stuff. This weeks food waster bought half a lamb every week, despite not knowing what to do with it or what the different cuts were. Half a lamb. Ye fucking Gods. She didn't need a visit from Jamie, she needed a visit from a man in a white coat.

I'll give Jamie some credit. Using his ideas, if not his recipes, has saved me a few bob this week. I have a load of chicken and different packs of mince in the freezer that I didn't need to use, and which, most weeks, I would have used. And here we are again, back at the weekend, and I'm going to do a Jamie again. I have already got a biggish lump of brisket brining. I'm not confident though. I hate fucking brisket,

Us Brummie types, especially us Brummie types who support the Blues, have been getting all beside ourselves at the prospect of Peaky Blinders starting on the telly. My departed nan used to call me and my brother peaky blinders when we played up, which was hardly ever. It concerns a bunch of Brummie hoodlums from 1919 or thereabouts, and there is a femme fatale, a mad Irish cop, social history, revolution and fuck knows what else in the pot. Jamie would be proud…..everything gets cooked, or overcooked.

Plenty has been written about the sets and the accents, but I have been surprised by the generally good press that it has received, because it is shit, absolutely woeful. If they had put as much effort into writing a decent script as they did in practising laughable accents, it might be OK, but they didn't and it's embarrassing. It's one saving grace was getting a mention of the Blues in. The barman in The Garrison reckoned half the team were in there, sinking a few before the game……a tradition which continues to this day, going by our start to the season.
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