Sunday, 30 September 2012

so, coeliac, you're breaking my heart

I'm certainly no fan of Simon and Garfunkel, but I couldn't resist the pun.

Mrs Dave invited some long-standing friends around for a meal on Saturday evening. All very well, it's been a while since we had guests but the husband is a coeliac (sufferer?) and that can cause a few problems over what food is served.  Mrs Dave often takes me to task for what I serve up - actually the WAY I serve it up. Evidently not everyone is impressed with fish with their heads still on or meat on the bone.  For instance, I was in rapture on Friday night with the Himalayan Lamb and Yogurt Curry we cooked, saying how I'd love to serve it up to guests.  However, I'm reliably informed by my more attractive and intelligent half, that not everyone will be impressed with neck end of lamb served on the bone even if served up in a surprisingly delicate and subtle sauce.  And a few friends have been taken aback by being served up fish et al served au naturel -that is, head on, un-filleted and scaly ( as nature intended). Now I know, I'm less likely to screw up (evidently). Perhaps some people are just fussy? Actually, I cooked some sardines today for lunch.  I really don't think she was that impressed - too many bones.

Anyway, some friends came round and we served them a meal fit for a king (okay one with coeliac): scallops wrapped in bacon, roast chicken with fruit and quinoa* (instead of vegetables) and a polenta cake (drizzled with orange etc). Excellent stuff. I even had to source some Gluten-free beer. Thank you, St Peter's. It all went very well - all except the fact that I seemed to be the only one drinking the wine. Lots of it. . .

It all went very well and I think Victor (the coeliac) and I have agreed to go to the cinema together to see the sort of films our spouses don't want to see but that's good (nothing sordid, you understand, but films like The Sweeney).  However, I must admit food like that seems to have a rather drastic impact on my stomach but I guess nobody needs to be concerned with my stomach's capriciousness.

After waking up just slightly left of a hangover, I managed to spend Sunday avoiding any form of work - much as I'm doing now, in fact. A bath, some washing up from the previous night's entertainment, a quick bit of toast and I was ready to find something far more entertaining to do.  So, we went off to one of my favourite shops, the Adnam's Shop at Woodbridge.  I felt that it was beholden upon me to investigate Adnam's new ranges of beer. Martyn Cornell may have a vague interest at this point.  Sole Star appears to be a "pale amber ale with a light floral citrus aroma and gentle caramel notes". At 2.7% abv, it's very welcome.  Mrs Dave assures me that the new Ginger Beer that they've produced is much more "beery" than the recent ones from Crabbies et al. I'll take her word for it, but at 2.5% it does seem to fit in with the current zeitgeist . Actually, ginger is very good for an upset stomach.  So, the next time I get one, I'll drink ginger beer as a panacea for my ills. They also seem to have started to produce Ghost Ship in cans so Adnams seem to be on the up. As long as they don't overeach themselves the way Greene King have then things will be okay. Low level alcohol beers are currently in vogue, and as long as they taste good and are not just a sop to Government rules, then all's well.  The jury's still out, of course.

Talking of ills - one of the work avoidance tactics I took was to drive off and find a wood somewhere to wander around. Although Mrs Dave wasn't feeling totally chipper today (?!) she agreed to join me in my current obsession to get my hands stung and ripped by thorns. We did get a few more blackberries at Melton (near Woodbridge for you map-crazed geeks) but I finally availed myself of the plethora of rosehips available. I will put my hand on my heart here and say that I have NEVER picked these wonderfully ubiquitous fruits before.  Obviously, you all have and think that I'm such a pleb©  for not having ever done it before. Anyway, I have now. I have actually made Rosehip Syrup - that's right, with its 20% higher amount of Vitamin C than oranges, I have access to natural health oozing from a bottle in our fridge. And I cut my own hands up in the making of it. I guess I won't get a cold this year, then.  Watch this space . . .

The other thing I wanted to mention was our "I want it and I want it NOW" culture.  I don't know where you sit on that but I'd welcome some comment on it. On Friday evening, I decided that I desperately wanted to hear a new album by a favourite artist of mine.  I had only just found out that day that Declan Sinnott (Moving Hearts, Christy Moore et al) has finally released a solo album after some 40 years of being involved in the Irish music scene; so, after a beer or two I decided that whilst the lamb was stewing (currying?) that I needed to listen to it NOW.

I'm glad I did because other than the song Corrine Corrine, it's  a great album -  I agree with the reviewer that it has a bit of a melodic J. J. Cale feel to it. But the point is that when I were a nipper (okay, a teen) if I wanted something I'd have to wait - or go to London to hunt it down.  Now, we can have anything we want immediately.  Amazon and iTunes have a lot to answer for. Personally, I think that this is a dangerous thing but revel in it any way, after all what's wrong with waiting for a few days? I will admit that I feel I am usually less excited by new discoveries nowadays than I was as a kid.  There are still things that excite me now, but more of that next time.

What do we get excited about now?

* pronounced "keen-wa"

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