Pandemic Ponderings #6

Life really does have a way of taking you in unusual directions in these rapidly changing times. Earache or not I had to go out today, observing social distance and cleanliness at all stages.

For some time now doughnuts have loomed large in my imagination, not just any doughnut, nothing fancy, a fresh ring doughnut or indeed a perfectly simple jam doughnut.

It has been a back burner kind of fantasy, perhaps a little enhanced or made more presient by the current restrictions on life. It was those very restrictions that enabled doughnuts to feature @theoldmortuary today. Parking in our local High Street (We are in Cornwall so it’s called Fore Street) is normally impossible but less people around gave me the Golden Ticket of parking spaces. Right outside Rowe’s Cornish Bakery.

Not somewhere I usually go for no other reason than the parking is tricksy.

Their doughnuts were perfect and the staff had been fully trained in no touch techniques and tonging. It was impressive.
https://www.rowesbakers.co.uk/

But it didn’t stop at Doughnuts…

Long ago in a large NHS hospital on- call and long shifts were sometimes fuelled by a Gregg’s Bacon Tasty, truly the comfort food of Health Professionals who know a lot about diet and Cardiac health.

It’s been 12yrs since I was close to a bacon tasty. Rowe’s call it a ‘Bacon Bite’ for complete accuracy. London Hospitals of my aquaintance did not offer such things. More worldy offerings certainly, equally bad for the general health but not Bacon Tasties.

The picture tells the story. The very best thing for a virus that induces earache is a Bacon Tasty. Served by someone well versed in the art of tonging.

Followed by the perfect doughnut. Also delightfully tonged.

I won’t bore you with the lovely fresh vegetables I sourced today, or the fish or other healthy comestibles.

What’s the point, this is Bakery Porn. You were warned that I had no idea where this restricted lifestyle would take us.

By complete coincidence a gift of bakery was also delivered to @theoldmortuary.

A man, unknown to us but connected made us a loaf to help out with the earache.

We are feeling plumptious and unrepentant.

#foodporn

Grey rainy mornings have been a constant companion of 2020. Some days the subject for the daily pondering is obvious other days nothing seems quite interesting enough, today with the early rain is one of those days. A quick skip through the image archive tempted me towards writing about rust, but ultimately one of the rust coloured images I retrieved pointed me the way of a saltier story. Baked goods, in particular the Cheese Straw.

Starting at the top I present the Gail’s Cheese Straw made with Mature Cheddar Cheese and Comté. This tasty little pile photographed at Gail’s Dulwich Village

I have a long history with cheese straws. My mum used to make them with left over pastry. Hers were pale and flacid and only as tasty as the cheese she had laying in the fridge. On fancy days she made a ring shape of cheesy dough and enclosed three or four skinny cheese straws within the ring.

A fellow blog writer has taken the time to write the history of the cheese straw. It’s a fascinating read on a rainy morning.
https://thehistoricfoodie.wordpress.com/2018/10/30/cheese-straws-a-quick-history/

I loved these unsophisticated treats eaten warm after school. For much of my life they were the only cheese straw I knew, I make them myself with left over pastry.

At some point in the Baking Renaissance of the 21st Century . Cheese Straws became bigger, puffier and altogether much tastier.

Armed with a Gail’s cookbook and a bit of creativity, cheese straws started to look a lot more fancy in my own kitchen.

I don’t know if people feel particularly passionate about cheese straws. I suspect they are overshadowed by prettier and sweeter ‘show stopper’ baked goods.

But without the cheese straw would it’s savoury cousins, the bacon or sausage tasty even exist?