Tuesday 25 December 2012

Sparrow-Sized Turkey

Not so much a New Testament Nativity as an Old Testament Flood as my picture of the Towy Valley shows. I'm sorry for those who are actually disrupted by the rain but I find apocalyptic weather oddly soothing as it puts one's personal daily challenges into a spectacular perspective, more so than news of dramatic human events (such as the long lost war in Afghanistan) because by contrast these examples of human folly seem close to home (though not literally so) and, I suppose, matters for which we are disturbingly responsible.

But enough of these musings. I'm up at 6 a.m. this morning for a croissant stuffed with ham and cheese and to open a present from Mrs Blog - a 225g tub of "Prince" shaving cream from Lush, with the strapline "Because no girl wants to be prickled by her prince". This is very welcome and it's in addition to a subscription to a scurrilous magazine which I already knew about. Mrs B is pleased with her presents too, the highlight being a blue scarf with a nautical motif and a pair of pliers for removing bones from fish.

And before I forget - Happy Christmas! And a special Happy Christmas to all Hafal's clients and their families and to Hafal's excellent staff, not least those working today.

A sparrow-sized turkey will be roasted later today but yesterday we had native oysters (this means the flat, meaty ones rather than the flimsier Portuguese-style ones which are equally good and better for beginners) followed by lobster risotto (using a frozen lobster from Lidl - £5.99 - see picture below). The recipe is originally from Bill Granger, the ever-smiling Australian chef, and I've refound it on this link - you can halve his ingredients to make two generous portions or four good starters using one Lidl lobster. It is worth taking the trouble to make the stock using the lobster shell - Mrs B does this but using a base of light, white fish stock. This a really delicate dish (no Parmesan please!) and you do need a nice clean starter to complement it - hence the oysters.