Day 3: Weirdly reminiscent of the college canteen

January 3, 2007

This evening we re-worked the turkey shepherd’s pie recipe to become, ta-da, lamb goulash. Essentially it is the same recipe but over noodles rather than under potato. Having sneakily done the chopping yesterday in a fit of over-keen food preparation, this was a relatively straightforward dinner. L said the process was a bit like the meals they served at college where they made a steaming vat of some sort of hot-pot at the beginning of the week. It would begin as casserole served with potatoes, then with the amazing addition of maybe one extra spice and some rice, the next day it would be “Indian” food and then the next day tortilla chips would be placed alongside the authentic “Mexican” dish, and so on.

Again, it has to be said, this was fine food, in the adequate sense of the word, rather than the exotic; solid and hearty. I have a feeling we may end this year a little heavier than we began.

In the next two or three days, please excuse any food-related grumpiness around this site. We have four days of macaroni cheese variations ahead of us.

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  • Reply another one year project » Blog Archive » Days 2 & 3: Tales of the unexpected January 4, 2008 at 4:10 pm

    […] There is something immensely gratifying about leafing through a glossy, beautifully presented and illustrated cookery book, where nearly all the recipes look appealing and thinking, wow, we are going to cook our way through this book. Nigella Express is about as far from 365: No Repeats A Year of Deliciously Different Dinners as you could get. It is filled with observations and musings on the role of food in our hectic lives, and each recipe is accompanied by a gorgeously sumptuous photograph. The Rachael Ray book is much more focused on quick-fire recipes, without any preamble, and it only has a handful of illustrations in the middle pages. I am wary of spending a whole year comparing and contrasting the meals and approaches of these two cooks. I do find it interesting however that neither are trained chefs, yet both have incredibly strong branding and appeal. The styling of the books mirror the presented package of the personality and the perceived life style. In buying the book, one can buy a little of the personality. One book is brightly coloured, cheerful, perky and fast-paced, using made up phrases and trademark expressions. The other book promotes thought and meditation about food; the recipes are equally fast and easy to follow, but the muted tones and attention to detail allude to the perception that the food is of a higher quality. I could go on, but suffice to say after three whole days we are feeling excited not terrified at the prospect of our upcoming task. This time last year we were not so enthusiastic; we were about to enter what will be remembered as the dark days of the 2007 Quartet of Macaroni Cheese. […]

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