Pandemic Ponderings #26

Who needs a beach? @theoldmortuary we are pretty close to many beaches, during Lockdown it’s not appropriate to visit them.

We live close enough to the coast for seagulls to be a problem, the current problem is that they are a bit bored with no tourists to steal chips from. To brighten up their days they have chosen our car to practise aiming their copious, glutinous poo.The best way to get it off is an automated car wash, there is something about the chemicals used and the flagellation that gives Seagull poo the brush off.

The perfect self isolation activity, the automated car wash gave us an added bonus today. Tropical coastal outlooks.

Pandemic Ponderings #25 Chapter 3

Chapter 3 finds us in North London where an Easter tradition of 18 people gathering has shrunk to just two this past weekend. Two flatmates isolating together, one of whom is a friend from The Heart Hospital. The numbers might have been down but the creative effort was high.

The day was lubricated with a Hix Fix, surely one of the easiest cocktails in the world to make. Two teaspoons of Cherry Liqueur in a saucer style champagne glass topped up with Champagne or sparkling wine. I’m loving the Pandemic twist with this one. No one shopped for the desirable but non essential Morello Cherries.

Googling has informed me that TV chef Keith Floyd drank two of these at The Fish House, Lyme Regis, just before he died.

It was his Last Supper.

This is hugely relevant to this blog as this exactly where Nic experienced her first Hix Fix and thankfully survived. Hugely relevent too because I go off piste a bit with this blog.I promise I will pull it all together in the end.

This is where I take some time out and share a family anecdote. This is getting just like a gathering of friends and family.

My Dad knew that he was dying, he had terminal bowel cancer . He remained mentally alert during his increasingly rare periods of wakefulness. He had a schedule of Last Suppers that needed to be fulfilled, each with its own tiny guest list. Shamefully I only remember the ultimate and penultimate ones although I believe afternoon tea with his cousin, Gwen, was also one. As anyone, who has spent a lot of time with someone who is dying, will attest not only the earthly guests attend these gatherings. My grandmother had afternoon tea with my Dad and his cousin, something that slightly bothered him as he was eating in bed. The fact that she was dead was not a bother at all. The next day was scheduled to be an Indian Takeaway, with a very specific order from a particular Take Away, it was to be shared with one of my Dad’s much loved work colleagues called Gordon and his wife Doreen. It was a surprise to us all when my husband’s Dad turned up. Not only was he too dead he didn’t much like Indian Takeaway.

The actual Last Supper was Smoked Salmon Sandwiches and Prosseco and was attended in the earthly sense by Dad’s friends Margaret and Tony, myself,my husband at the time , Steve and my Uncle Peter. The three of us had been my dad’s only carers in the last week and were the fulfilment department of food dreams and guest lists. My mum was about but sadly she was already terminally ill herself and had a rare neurological disorder.

The guest list at the actual last supper went wildly out of control. Nothing wrong with the earthly participants but the deceased ones went crazy. There were people there we didn’t even know were dead.

In the morning we discovered that amid the uncleared plates and unfinished Prosseco glasses my dad had slipped off with the uninvited guests.

Now that is why googling in the middle of a blog is a risky old business. The Hix Fix knocked me completely off my chosen path. My apologies to Nic and her house party for two and those of you who were waiting for the next course.. No more googling for today.

To be fair Nic has suggested in her email to me that the Hix Fix may have knocked her slightly off the path of culinary perfection but like everyone who has worked in highly challenging environments in the Health Service she was prepared and she knew what had to be done.

Here we are back on track.

Big, fat, succulent , scallops on a pea puree with crispy Iberico Ham.

Followed by

Chicken Mole with Rice.

I am just going to have to slip off to Google . Mole!!

Wow. South American Chicken Stew with many gorgeous ingredients. This is going to be a Lockdown learning experience.

Here is the desert, slightly improvised because Nic had a broken oven. Lime and ginger posset with sesame things. It should have been served with home made sesame shortbread.

Thanks Nic Delahunty that was amazing food , thank you for taking the time to share.

The plan was to head off to Hungary next in Chapter 3 but I’ve probably given you enough for today so tomorrow that’s where we are off to.