“The only real stumbling block is fear of failure. In cooking you've got to have a what-the-hell attitude.” ― Julia Child

Monday, October 22, 2012

New Stuff

It's been a while, I suppose, or at lest it's been long enough to make me think maybe I should check in with a digest (if you'll pardon the pun) of recently consumed comestibles and potables.

I am not normally a regular vodka drinker, but this affordable British Vodka from Pure Star is pretty decent, nicer certainly than Smirnoff, and reasonable in price at under £20. What I have done recently is to come up with a little cocktail of my own. Start with a few ice cubes in a rocks glass. Pour in one part Pure Star Vodka...

..and one part of this Five Valleys  Lemon & Mint Cordial, then top off with tonic water. Nice.  This cordial is also useful in cooking - the other day I made an apple pie. I put some demerara sugar in a pan on a low heat, and slowly let it melt and caramelise. Then I added the apples and some mixed spice, and a glug of this cordial and let it simmer a few mins before transferring to the pie dish. I think it worked nicely and gave an otherwise boring pie an interesting twist.
A limited edition cider from Magner's - Spiced Apple and Rhubarb. Nice tart twist ad suitably spicy enough to be a Halloween brew par excellence.

Speaking of All Hallows Eve, this dark mild with a citrus note is truly wonderful. Available in Marston's Inns.

Rekorderlig is a Swedish cider company - who knew?  There are two main varieties. A pear one, and this little beauty - a strawberry/lime concoction.

KFC's latest attempt at making a new sandwich is basically a Fillet Tower burger with a zingy sauce and a giant tortilla chip inserted near the top, so nothing really new, but pretty good all the same.

See the chip? Under the lettuce?
A friend of ours recently went to Turkey and brought us back some Turkish Delight.

Generously swathed in coconut.

The problem I have with Turkish Delight is that there are two types of it - there's the soft gelatinous type that usually comes dusted with icing sugar and tastes of rosewater or lemon. This is the kind I like. The other kind is more chewy and nougat-like and contains nuts and other things, like the kind you see above. I'll eat it, but it's not as good as the gelatinous rosy kind.
The other week my Sis and I went to purchase some locally grown fruit and veg for an activity we were going to do at Harvest Festival about Food Miles. We went to Gibbet Oak Farm, a local farm shop. It's kind of weird going to Gibbet Oak for Sis and I because when we were little our grandparents lived and worked there so we spent some considerable time at the farm. Now when we go there, it not only looks a lot smaller than we remember but it's a little bittersweet. The farm shop is housed in what used to be the shed where the apples were graded and packed.

Cox's Orange Pippins, to give them their full name.

Bramleys, I think.

Kentish Mayde pies have been mentioned before on these pages, and they are terrific.

Locally grown chillies. 

These two apples were sitting over by the till and were easily as big as my  fists.

The final purchases - apples and plums from Tenterden, mixed salad from Appledore  and runner beans from West Malling.

We placed them on a table next to apples from South Africa, runner beans from Kenya and plums from Spain, then asked people to guess where these items were grown. We didn't use the salad - it had gotten a bit soggy by that point.

Kooshti Sante!

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