I did have to hoover up some of the ingredients for the ‘turkey’, but other than this annoying break in the cookery proceedings, I am pleased to announce I’ve made the turkey. (One thing less on the list of things to do.) Though scraping semi-ground cashews off the sofa is an unusual part even of my turkey assembly line.
This is an organic kind of home, where many unlikely foodstuffs are made from scratch. And from cashews. Our turkey is an almond and cashew nutloaf, complete with stuffing, and very nice. But the last thing you want to do is stand there on Christmas Day spilling powdered cashews all over the living-room, so it gets made in advance. ‘Advanced turkey’ as it might say in the ad.
But it was cookbooks I wanted to talk to you about. There are all these fancy recipe books, but they are nothing. Then you have those enormous basic cookbooks that cover everything you need to know. Almost. I have a Swedish one, and as you may recall, Daughter now has one, too. Picked up from the kebab place in Sweden.
And I have the British (or should that be English?) equivalent, for all those local specialities that I don’t know how to cook. The Good Housekeeping Cookery Book. But it has made me despair on occasion.
When I discovered parkin for bonfire night over twenty years ago, I thought it’d be good to make. But could I find a recipe in the GHCB? Nope. It’s there, though. After years of frustration I became more methodical, and found it under O in the index. O for oatmeal parkin.
I had encountered trifles even before meeting the Resident IT Consultant (I’m not saying he is a trifle, btw!), but never had much interest in them. Then Esperanto Student informed me that trifle is something you ‘must’ eat at Christmas. Which I had omitted to do for years, so I looked up the recipe with a view to making amends. And trifle. Not there.
It also turned up under O after some searching. That would be old English trifle.
Fish pie does not have pastry in it. That was another thing I never knew in my alien past. So, recipe for fish pie. Traditional fare. Not under F. Older and wiser I now knew to go straight to O in the index. It’s called old-fashioned fish pie. Why didn’t I guess?
I have a perfectly good Swedish recipe for scones, but wanted to check something in the GHCB. Do you want to have a go at suggesting what they are? Oven scones.
The treacle tart is also old-fashioned. And have you heard of the One stage fruit cake? You have now.