Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Mad Men Soiree

We had a Mad Men themed party! The food looked a bit like this... 
A sixties-inspired spread: onion dip, vol au vents, cheese straws and banana salad!
Cheese Straws (in ounces for authenticity)
4 oz plain flour                         1 egg yolk
pinch of salt                              2oz Cheddar cheese
dash of Cayenne pepper         1 tablespoon water
2 oz butter
Rub together butter and flour until the mix resembles breadcrumbs. Stir in the finely grated cheese and bind with the egg yolk and water. Knead lightly and roll out. Cut into lots of strips and a few rings if you feel like some extra faffing for presentation purposes. Bake in a hot oven for 7-10 minutes. Cool and place the cheese straws into rings for serving.
"Cheese Straws, in neat little bundles slipped through pastry rings, make delicious cocktail savoury snacks." 
~from Woman's Own Cook Book (1964)

sixties banana salad
A faithful reproduction of a pretty exotic sixties salad. It might be an acquired taste but I think its rather handsome. 

Monday, 18 October 2010

Silver Darlings: a day of herring inspired fun

I have many guises. On Saturday 17th October I was wearing my puppeteering hat. Its quite a new hat! Dark Squid Inc. (Susie, Rosie and I) performed 'Secrets of the Sizewell Sea', an underwater tale involving nuclear waste, mutated sea creatures and everything in between, to an appreciative audience of toddlers, parents and grandmas at  Tide museum Gt. Yarmouth's annual herring day. Herring-related activities of every manner imaginable were the order of the day, and it was great.

We have big ideas and exciting plans for new shows and performances at different venues. Watch this space!
Stars of the show Vilma the Whale and Stephen Seahorse

No prizes for guessing what we had for lunch... 
Herring Frying
Herring in a roll £3.00! 
The problem with herring is that it is an attention seeker. Not satisfied with a whole day to celebrate its history and influence on the economy of Gt. Yarmouth if you have herring for lunch you will still taste it at dinnertime. 

I made a picture!
I was more than a bit excited about this picture I made for my Mum. 

Can't wait until next year for more herring-inspired fun? Get yourself down to Gt.Yarmouth's Time and Tide Museum already!

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Oat and Raisin Consolation Cookies

Cookies and wheels are both round. Here endeth the similarities. Cookies I can cope with. I win at cookies. Wheels are another matter. Every summer I set out to conquer the wheel. The bicycle, the car, I aim to tame. Too often they defeat me with their tyres and their gears and their anti-brake locking systems (don't ask, actually bicycles almost definitely don't have those). As such last Tuesday I failed my driving test for the second time. Lucky I've got my legs and a bus pass. Unlucky no car has cookies for wheels. 

Cookies of the oat and raisin variety

Heather, Maud and I watched the hilarious His Girl Friday and had tea and cookies. This film is a top laugh, so good it will make you forget about any misfortune, any mis-success.  If you haven't seen it, seek it out! 

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Pumpkin and lentil soup-stew-pie

I made Nigel Slater's Pumpkin and lentil stew-soup and it was good. The colour combination of earthy green and luminous orange is more than a bit groovy. The next day with the addition of some puff pastry, spinach and feta I turned my soup into a pie and it was (even more) good. If this recipe was a toy it would be a transformer car-robot-plane. 

To transform soup-stew into pie:
preheat oven to 220 C - roll out puff pastry to make pie lids - place on a baking tray and bake for 10 minutes - meanwhile, take a bowl of the soup and reduce it simmering for 10 minutes - mix a teaspoon of flour and a glug of milk in a mug then add to the saucepan - stir in a handful of spinach and a handful of feta cheese - spoon pie filling onto a plate and top with the pastry lids - enjoy!

Pie time!