Poetry and Pond Life Cookery

Spend morning in kitchen, baking a very large pie for a friend's birthday barbecue this afternoon. Pie filling consists mainly of rhubarb from the garden. While making pastry (never my strong suit) watch strangely compulsive saturday morning cookery programmes on TV. Two chefs are competing for privilege of cooking for some event in France. Miss beginning of programme, so am not sure what event.
Am bemused by judges, a trio of such crashing old snobs, their comments so close to self satire, that if I wrote them in a play the critics wouldn't believe me. Do they imagine that the majority of people watch the programme to admire their perception? Do they know that the majority of people watch it, partly to see the chefs sweat, partly to marvel at the strange and uneppetising combinations of food, and almost wholly to scoff at the judges? Amazingly clever double bluff on part of the programme makers. They can't lose really, can they?
Just as I am fitting swathe of Jamie Oliver's buttery pastry into large and lovely earthenware pie dish (made by my friends at Peinn Mor pottery near Girvan, if you want to know) I am brought up short by a dish described as 'A warm salad of duck liver, heart, snails and bacon.'
Even typing those words gives me a quick qualm of nausea. Wonder why? Think it has something to do with the connections between the words. It's like a line from a poem, in that it conjures up a crowd of images over and beyond itself. Not very nice images either.
Not helped by one of the judges commenting on the 'wonderful smell of offal'.
Queasy stomach is improved by the next programme which involves Gary Rhodes cooking duck breasts this time, in competition with a Takeaway. No contest really. Don't need all these gimmicks with Gary. He's sheer poetry and theatre rolled into one. Why don't they just let him cook and talk to the camera? Suspect he could even make warm salad of pond life seem appetising.


Anonymous said…
Duck liver,heart, snails and bacon, why not? I like them to eat (never tried them to mix but believe they are tasty. But duck breast is to much even for me!
Patricia said…
I like those saturday morning cookery programmes on TV. Sometimes they really offer good dishes but as for duck breast... It's to one's sophisticated liking!
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