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March 06, 2006


Being all inspired and enthused about countryish things over the last few days, I delve into Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's 'Meat' book - half essay, half cookbook, and a dashed good read.

I come across a recipe for cassoulet, that great French sausagey beany casseroley thing, and suddenly remember that I have a kit somewhere. A kit, in this case, consists of vac-packed sausage and pork belly and a packet of haricot beans.

No time like the present, I think to myself, with a manly jaw-jut and a heartily inflated chest. I get out Pots and Pans. I read the first of the instructions: soak beans overnight in cold water. I put Pots and Pans away. No time like tomorrow morning, I think to myself, zeal untarnished.

Aaaaaanyway, after much pfaffing and jaw stroking, the dish is ready. It has a heady, some might even say farmyardy, odour. It looks roughly like the picture in the book.

The LOML takes one glance and wordlessly gets a pizza out of the freezer for herself and the kids.

Their loss, I decide. I am determined to remain Undaunted. I serve myself a big bowlful. The flavour is, ah, interestingly strong - the various sausage is so spicy and the pork bellies so unexpectedly salted that these are the primary flavours. The beany tomato-y oniony sauce is nice, though.

Later on that evening, the LOML reminds me that her parents brought the cassoulet kit back from Spain for me, and, adding up on her fingers as she goes, works out that this is more than a year ago. I remind myself that I am remaining Undaunted, and content myself that the meat was vac-packed so it must be all right, surely. The slight abdominal rumbling is (a) normal for me anyway, and (b) just a result of the high bean content.

I put all thoughts of the texture of the pork belly out of my mind. It was perhaps a little yielding. 'Clammy' is a word which is not a great distance away from inclusion in that set of words that could be used to describe it. It smelled ok, though, surely? Oh yes, I convince myself, nodding. It did. However, I then remind myself, I have had a cold sufficient to prevent me from smelling anything much for a month now. Enough! No more weakness! 'Undaunted', remember?

Much, much later, in the wee small hours of the morning, suddenly awaking from fitful slumber while propped up sitting on the toilet, yet again, I finally admit that perhaps mere Undauntedness is sometimes not enough.

All in all, you will appreciate how this may have something to do with the lack of posts over the last few days.


  • oh dear. I'm sorry for laughing but I couldn't help myself.

    You get an A+ for initiative though.

    Hope you're feeling better soon.

    Also, just on the interesting quirks of English-over here I've heard pfaffing used as another word for shagging. what do you think of that?

    By Anonymous kyahgirl, at 10:37 pm  

  • I pfaff about a lot.

    By Blogger crisiswhatcrisis, at 9:09 am  

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