Note to self for Christmas day – don’t go all stress-balls, okay?

Fried chicken done in baking-soda puffed batter, a home-grown basil pasta salad with cherry tomatoes and Spanish olives, thyme and rosemary infused BBQ baby octopus, apple cabbage carrot and creme-fesh coleslaw, a marshmallow strawberry mousse, pickled cucumbers, and delightfully bitter-sweet Campari cocktails…

That’s what I’m whipping up for Christmas lunch this year, my contribution to the yearly feast that’s replaced the focus on gifting – although we will have a tree (plastic and over 10 years old) and some inexpensive pressies, less than 10 dollars from the op shop I reckon.

It’s at my place too so I’ll have to clean the loo…plus sweep the floors and get rid of the cobwebs, plus put all my clothes away and sort through the papers on the table, oh, and clean all the glasses and find enough bowls and keep the benches clear and synchronise dishes, and greet family guests and get them a drink and arrange all the chairs and light up the BBQ and refill the ice-cubes and keep an eye on the chicken and most of all…

…I’ll try to remember to not go all stress-balls.

 

Food porn–the delicious objectification of vegetables, meats & grains

Tonight, before I get stuck into another episode of the excellent 10-part BBC documentary series  Hitler’s Circle of Evil (available on YouTube without interruptions) I’ll begin my evening’s viewing with a less arduous course. I’ll have the light entree if I may. I’ll settle back for some foodie-themed globetrotting, travel the world and visit homely kitchens and wander the colour-splashed aisles of spice-heaped markets, uncover the cooking methods of ancient relatives and, who knows? Maybe I’ll even discover the true origins of grain.

I’m not so keen on bearing witness to the pedantic art of micro-herb placement, or following the trials and tribulations of restaurant X’s rise to two or three-hat status, but I do enjoy the high-resolution, soft-edged objectification of vegetables, meats and grains currently taking place on our screens –  a genre that seems to be multiplying like mold spores on a delicious, washed-rind cheese.

Because something lovely happens in my brain when I clap eyes on the firm flesh of freshly- captured salmon, buried deep in a thick crust of salt and fired by local yet sustainable log – the succulence of cream-fleshed scallop gently nestled in a cradle of hand-knitted twigs – a plate of scattered pipi awash in a pond of wasabi-infused foam – the slow-motion capture of bubbles rising to the surface of hallowed liquid A or B – the sexy gluten-stretch as air-filled bread gets ripped asunder by plough-calloused hand oh, oh, oh!

What was I saying? Er-hem. Yes…I do love a bit of food porn served up on a rustic platter…