Sunday, December 18, 2005

Scottish food

Check me out!

Scottish food is the best.

Walked up to the village this morning in a bid to blow away a mild hangover and get a paper. Looked over stone dykes, across fields and fences, into woodland and gullies. When you drive you miss so much, you also stay warm, however I enjoyed the change. I’ll do it again sometime. At about 1130 a big family breakfast followed, eggy piece (French toast but Ali likes to call it this), toast, sausage, tomatoes, bacon, rolls, mushrooms and dumpling. Is there any other culture where food is cooked twice as it is in Scotland? Frying an already cooked dumpling, infact burning it until the fruit caramelizes and then eating it with brown sauce. Tastes magnificent, but you’d never expect it to, it should be dreadful but it’s not. It’s the deep fried Mars bar thing again, totally odd foodstuff rehashed and made into a work or culinary art. Those foodies on TV haven’t a clue, a bit like the Scottish Exec.

Yesterday was spent studying the effect of carrying shopping bags long distances (between shops) on my shoulder blades trying to reach equilibrium in their balance. I now know my safe loading limit and for how long it is safe to exceed it. I survived without long term damage and did feel just a little smug about getting a hutch load of Christmas presents in one visit to Edinburgh. Much of the success of this was down to Ali’s planning and navigation as we swept across the tarmac and chewing gum surfaces of the city. Favourite shop? Blackwell’s bookshop is great, the staff are helpful and we got a lot of what we were looking for. Worst shop? Well I don’t dislike the shop as much as I used to, but Habitat in the West End is looking a bit shabby – best sort it out folks.

The wild birds that we’ve started to feed are now relying upon us I think, two great tits, a sparrow and a robin. Not much compared to the summer’s Mangey bird fest in Glen Esk but a start. Trouble is round here (on a shooting estate) birds tend to get shot at so you can understand if they are less than trusting of human kind. They’re not so keen on pork scraps however; seeds and fatty bits are the most popular. The cat is of course confused by this activity – he is spending more time in the fields and getting muddy, then coming in and jumping onto your lap to share the mud.

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