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 The Tumbleweed Suite

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Temperance
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PostSubject: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 22 Jan 2016, 16:57

Triceratops wrote:


Could always cheat and use Marks & Sparks trifle with some Drambuie or Whisky poured into the sponge.


Brilliant idea, Trike. I should have thought of that.

I have, however, as suggested by MM, whipped up a bizarre concoction of oats, brown sugar, frozen ( Embarassed ) raspberries, cream and whisky with a bit of Quark thrown in (which I think was a mistake). It looks awful.

Shall I call it Gordonstoun Mess or Fettes Mess? I bet no one eats it. Oh well. Should have gone to Lidl's without mentioning the L-word.

I shall say I got the recipe for my Mess from the Guardian.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 22 Jan 2016, 17:23

Frozen raspberries (!) .... but actually, even if you are best mates with the head gardener of Inverewe Gardens, I doubt you can get fresh raspberries at this time of year unless they've been flown in from Chile or the South Island of New Zealand. So I think frozen will be fine.

But whatever is Quark?

And please don't just say, "Well it's elementary, ain't it?" Is Quark some quasi-Angel-Delight melange of baryons and mesons? And more importantly what flavour does it have: up, down, strange, charm, top or bottom?

silent

But there again does it really matter ... or does it anti-matter?
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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 22 Jan 2016, 17:35

You can get fresh raspberries in M&S or Sainsbury's, but I didn't have time to go there.

I hope the frozen things defrost in time. I expect they will. I just bunged them in and hoped for the best. I toasted the porridge oats - hope that was OK.

Quark is horrible stuff. I don't know why I buy it. It's like cottage cheese. Not Sky-At-Night quark.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quark_(dairy_product)

Right, must go and get ready.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 22 Jan 2016, 17:42

Cream and oatmeal from Lidl, some honey, a splash of whisky and your raspberries and you would have had cranachan. Simples. However, you seem to have concocted something vaguely similar. I don't know what you would call it though.

http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/648633/cranachan
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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sat 23 Jan 2016, 00:25

It all got eaten - didn't look too bad piled into individual glasses. I only made enough for about twelve people, but the pudding panic was quite unnecessary anyway, as people dug stuff out of their freezers. Loads left over.

And haggis is very filling. I'm glad there was a veggie haggis; the meaty stuff looked and smelt horrible. Sorry, ferval, but it did.

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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sat 23 Jan 2016, 08:32

Sorry Temps... but there is no such thing as a veggie haggis. 
What you were probably tasting was the floor sweepings of the dog food line... even in our little New Forest village they grow it, harvest it and process it into a chunky brand of well known dog food that you would never guess its main ingredient to be... peas. 
Haggis is a wee furry animal that runs around the Scottish mountains.
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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sat 23 Jan 2016, 09:13

Smile

http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/wordofmouth/2012/jan/25/burns-night-supper-vegetarian-haggis

Oh dear, I wish I had not read this (from above link):

I made proper haggis a couple of years ago, a laboriously icky procedure that involved clamping windpipes to the side of the saucepan using clothes pegs to allow snot to drain from the lungs, and seemingly endless skimming of the broth to remove scum. That experience took a couple of days: you can make the vegetarian version in half an hour.

Poor Mary Queen of Scots. I'm not surprised she fled to England.


PS That there Tacitus mentioned quark in his book Germania as lac concretum ("thick milk"), eaten by Germanic peoples. Can't see the Romans taking to it. I don't think the Romans liked cheese, but I'm not sure.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sat 23 Jan 2016, 11:24

From Dorothy Hartley's 'Food in England' (1954):

Nowadays haggis are issued sew up, but years ago in the kitchen of the Cape Wrath Lighthouse I ate a haggis made by "herself" and it had three wooden skewer pins down its belly, making it look like a debauched black beetle. But it was "warm reeking rich", and the fat within had distilled "like amber beads". It was very savoury. I watched it being prepared. The paunch and pluck were boiled whole in a big iron pan; with the windpipe hanging over the edge to drain off the impurities.



How can you not like haggis? It's great!

Temperance wrote:

Poor Mary Queen of Scots. I'm not surprised she fled to England.

Och she'd have been fine with haggis having been brought up in France, the country of afranchemoyle (sheep's tripe stuffed with eggs, breadcrumb and bone marrow), andouillette (pig's colon stuffed with tripe and intestines), paté de tête de veau (haslet), and tripe in aspic ... all of which were served at the French court.


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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sat 23 Jan 2016, 11:55

Seriously, I cannot bear any of it: it reminds me of hanging, drawing and quartering, or that a dreadful Viking blood eagle thing.

How can people eat such stuff? It's utterly barbaric.

But the picture made me laugh, in spite of myself - "drain off the impurities" indeed.

Can we change the subject? My fault for quoting the Guardian.





My snowdrops are out, but not as prolific as last year.
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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sat 23 Jan 2016, 11:57

No she wouldn't: Diane de Poitiers supervised Mary's diet and wouldn't let her eat rich, meaty food, especially greasy gravies and such.

Catherine de Medici was the terrible example of what happened if you stuffed yourself with such horrors.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sat 23 Jan 2016, 12:08

Rather jealous of your snowdrops, but I doubt they'd do too well here. I have got a few crocus just starting to flower - which seems rather early to me - but I doubt they'll be as prolific as last year since the wild boar dug up my lawn, and the bulbs, last Autumn.

Temperance wrote:
No she wouldn't: Diane de Poitiers supervised Mary's diet and wouldn't let her eat rich, meaty food, especially greasy gravies and such.

Catherine de Medici was the terrible example of what happened if you stuffed yourself with such horrors.

Well yes Catherine de Medici did like her food ... it was she (or rather her Italian cooks) that taught the French haute cuisine, before that the French court was (im)famous for its bad meals and terribly unsophisticated cookery ... not that many Frenchmen would admit that then, nor even acknowledge that historical fact today. Mind you those dishes I mentioned above all date from before the 16th century, so you can't really blame Catherine de Medici for those awful, offal things ... which sort of proves the point about how bad late medieval French cuisine was.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sat 23 Jan 2016, 15:27

Crikey Temp, I hope you don't eat sausages........
If you eat liver, kidney and sweetbreads, what's so wrong with lights? I do draw the line at intestines though. I once tasted African 'vegetable intestines' which I assumed was a dish of exotic vegetables. It wasn't. It was exactly as described and tasted as you would expect stewed guts to.

Tempura haggis with pickled neeps is delicious.

And the veracity of the blood eagle thing is contested.  http://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/the-vengeance-of-ivarr-the-boneless-4002654/?no-ist

I should post a picture of the pink roses blooming in my front garden and all the little scarlet ones in the back. No snowdrops though, probably because I con't have any.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sat 23 Jan 2016, 16:18

Temperance wrote:
Seriously, I cannot bear any of it: it reminds me of hanging, drawing and quartering, or that a dreadful Viking blood eagle thing.

How can people eat such stuff? It's utterly barbaric.

But the picture made me laugh, in spite of myself - "drain off the impurities" indeed.

Can we change the subject? My fault for quoting the Guardian.


 

I don't like offal either but eating it isn't barbaric. People once were not as spoit as we are these days, could rarely afford meat and when they did they used every bit they could from sheer necessity. And now we are at the opposite end of the scale, so much that we are far too wasteful therefore once again we should be eating everything we can from necessity. Simply because the massive resources we are consuming are not sustainable forever. 

Still won't make me eat offal though, I'd prefer to go full vegan than that. Smile
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sat 23 Jan 2016, 16:20

ferval wrote:

I do draw the line at intestines though....

I think a lot of food prejudice is just down to what one is used to, and especially the things one ate when young.

My partner loved andouillettes (basically pig lower intestines), and he considered the best andouillettes were those that retained a whiff of, well, "shit". I'm not a lover of andouillettes, and while I've eaten a lot of worse things, I'm still not too keen on the slightly fecal taste and smell of even the finest andouillettes. It's just not my thing.

Nevertheless I can still relate to Joyce's Mr Bloom:

"Mr Leopold Bloom ate with relish the inner organs of beasts and fowls. He liked thicj giblet soup, nutty gizzards, a stuffed roast heart, liver slices fried with crustcrumbs, fried hencod's roes. Most of all he liked grilled mutton kidneys which gave to his palate a tang of faintly scented urine."

James Joyce, 'Ulysses'.

That said .... while personally I don't eschew meat completely, I prefer not to eat factory-farmed animals, and have eaten very little beef, pork or chicken for many years. I do however still eat local duck and mutton (which are both difficult to intensively rear, and those I do eat are raised, and slaughtered, locally) ... and local game (though I'm not a hunter) ... and local fish. But it seems to me that if one is going to eat Waitrose's finest trimmed lean, lamb, loin-chops ... then one should also be prepared to eat all the lesser bits and pieces: the heart, liver, kidneys, feet, and pluck. And in that context it isn't at all "barbarous" to eat haggis ... surely it is just common-sense, and frankly it gves a lot more respect to the animal. No?
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PaulRyckier
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sat 23 Jan 2016, 19:31

Meles meles,

as I didn't know it:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haggis
and in the text I met the word "offal"...for me it sounded as our West-Flemish "afval" (pronounced the West-Flemish way) and see:

offal
ˈɒf(ə)l/
noun
noun: offal; plural noun: offals
the entrails and internal organs of an animal used as food.

"eating pieces of braised offal turned his stomach"


  • waste material.

    "the packing plant dumped its offal into the stream"

  • decomposing animal flesh.

    "gulls pecking at piles of offal from the narwhal hunt"


Origin

late Middle English (in the sense ‘refuse from a process’): probably suggested by Middle Dutch afval, from af ‘off’ + vallen ‘to fall’.


Kind regards, Paul.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Mon 25 Jan 2016, 10:07

Temp,

I was in Waterstones on Saturday and noticed this in the new books section:



Checking up, it was first published in October 2015, so perhaps not all that new.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Mon 25 Jan 2016, 10:10

They had this as well:

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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Mon 25 Jan 2016, 10:27

Haven't seen either Trike. Off to Amazon at once.

Smile

I wonder if there are dragons in the new P&P.? Do hope so. After all, what good is a book without pictures or conversations - or zombies and dragons?
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Mon 25 Jan 2016, 12:36

I don't know about dragons, Temp, but Sense and Sensibility now comes with Sea Monsters;

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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Mon 25 Jan 2016, 13:47

Do you believe in the existence of Aliens sequels ?;

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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Mon 25 Jan 2016, 14:16

Existence? Yes.
Advisability? Definitely not.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Mon 25 Jan 2016, 14:29

I order a round of drinks to toast Meles meles!

It is not every day Res Historica ends up in academic journals, and thanks to MM we can now proudly call ourselves a reference for learned and erudite scholarship articles (well, ones involving snails anyway). And also, thanks to his being anonymous he ends up as the first reference in the index too!



Cheers Cheers Cheers Cheers

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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Mon 25 Jan 2016, 14:52



See, I said you were une étoile véritable, our MM!

Can I have your autograph?

We need a celebratory Dish of the Day - something  nice and snaily, perhaps? Does champagne go with snails? Who cares?


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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Mon 25 Jan 2016, 15:35


Champagne goes with anything!

Congratulations MM, I'm very impressed but slightly alarmed to consider what eyes might happen upon these pages and what use might be made of some of the contributions..
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Mon 25 Jan 2016, 17:47

I'm somewhat bemused and non-plussed ... why ever did that get referenced?

But champers are always welcome ... do they go with haggis? (... AND neeps: I finally found a greengocer selling swedes!).
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Mon 25 Jan 2016, 18:02

Will you do some veggie snails for me, MM?

Smile

Here's to the glorious and honourable state of non-plussed-ness. Long may it continue!

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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Mon 25 Jan 2016, 18:16

Temperance wrote:
Will you do some veggie snails for me, MM?

Smile

I believe most snails are vegetarian, indeed I suspect snails are usually raw-food vegans by choice. The ones I usually eat either come frozen in nicely-shaped foil trays and slathered in loads of garlic butter, from my frozen food supplier (they're for guests, or me if I'm feeling rich); or picked off the garden wall after rain, but then still cooked with lashings of garlic and herbs (but they're just for me, and for when the bank account is running low).

But in honour of the original knights-v-snails post (which wasn't started by me), there is also a late medieval dish called, "poore knyghts", made of toasted bread, a little cheese, sugar and spice, and egg (its a bit like a sweet pain perdu) ... which I would imagine is much more to your liking.
Cheers
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Mon 25 Jan 2016, 19:35

Neeps - don't talk to me about neeps. I paid 45p (that's 9/- in real money) for what amounted to a wee slice today. It's basically cattle food, for heaven's sake. I should have driven out into the country, found a tumshie field and done what my grandfather was wont to do, pull one up from the edge. He used to swear that the farmer wouldn't mind.

To be honest, I think snails are just an excuse to eat lashings of garlic butter.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Mon 25 Jan 2016, 23:12

Well we had a real country dinner tonight - roast rabbit (before anyone asks, not one of the Girl Siduri's) with swede, parsnip, carrot and potatoes also roasted, and sprouts. I recall the local farmer's wife slipping my grandfather a couple of 12-bore cartridges and asking him to shoot her a rabbit. Almost always he'd get a brace, and keep one for the family. The farmer could never figure out why he seemed to be getting through his ammo at such a rate. There is an old country grace from the times when rabbit graced the poor countryman's table with a frequency which became unwelcome.

"For rabbits hot,

     and rabbits cold,
For rabbits young
    and rabbits old
For rabbits tender,
    rabbits tough
We thank thee Lord
    we've had enough"
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Tue 26 Jan 2016, 16:19

Have just spotted an on line-funeral sale of 40% off - ought I to die today and save hundreds? (nord need not reply about saving his oh so logical sanity if I did. This is assumed.) But then I couldn't spend the saving on all those new healthy food ranges. Life - and death - are becoming so complicated these days.
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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 28 Jan 2016, 09:14

A friend tried to explain "kettle logic" to me yesterday. It sounds better in French: "la logique du chaudron". It is, apparently, a kind of informal fallacy. Wiki helpfully points out that we should not confuse kettle logic with the pot calling the kettle black.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kettle_logic

My favourite syllogism comes from Garfield. Garfield is looking looking longingly at a piece of cake. There are three pictures.

1. I am on a diet which allows carrots.

2. This is a piece of carrot cake.

3. A loophole!



I shall put the kettle on and go back under my stone.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 28 Jan 2016, 10:42

Temperance (some days ago) wrote:

PS That there Tacitus mentioned quark in his book Germania as lac concretum ("thick milk"), eaten by Germanic peoples. Can't see the Romans taking to it. I don't think the Romans liked cheese, but I'm not sure.


I've just been reading a book about Roman cuisine*... Yes Romans ate cheese - as a means of preserving milk it was a staple of the poor and the legions, but was also treated as a delicacy by the wealthy. Similarly the writings of the austere, penny-pinching, Cato the Elder, as well as those of the lavish-spending gastronome, Apicius, both include recipes for using cheese in cooked dishes.

Pliny devotes two chapters of his Natural History to describing the various types of cheese: soft, hard, fresh, matured, aged, smoked, or flavoured with herbs, spices or nuts... and both home-produced and imported from the provinces. During republican times the best cheeses came from the Italian Apeninnes, Alps and Dolomites, from southern France, and from Greece, which had a long tradition of cheese making. After Caesar's conquest of Gaul, French cheeses from the Rhône valley, western Alps and Massif Central, became highly regarded, as were Swiss cheeses, once the Helvetii had been defeated. Pliny also particularly praises a hard, naturally salty cheese from Bithynia, where the flocks grazed salt-marshes along the Black Sea coast.

According to Pliny, animals with two nipples - sheep, goats, donkeys and horses - make the best cheese. Milk from animals with four nipples - cats and dogs - he considers generally unsuitable for cheese-making, but then goes on to describe cheeses made with the milk of cows, camels and deer, all of which have four nipples. These were presumably considered suitable because of the large quantity of milk they produced, although he does note that cheese made from cows' milk, while nutritious, is hard to digest. He also intriguingly describes cheeses made from the milk of rabbits and hares (both with typically six teats) and recommends such cheeses as a cure for diarrhoea. How, I wonder, does one milk a rabbit? Unfortunately, knowing what the Romans were like, I rather suspect it starts with the demise of the rabbit.


The book is, 'Around the Roman Table', by  Patrick Haas (2003) ISBN 0333 90466 4 ... originally published 1994 in Dutch (I think). It's a good read, well researched but not too academic, and (IMHO) he puts all the lark-brains, dormice-in-honey, and flamingoes-tongues-in aspic, etc ... into a sensible context, alongside the day to day basics of porridge, lentil stew, bread, sausages and, yes hard, salty old cheese.


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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 28 Jan 2016, 17:16

After it had been well-tortured, no doubt. Imagine being a rabbit back then - with all those nasty Romans out to get you so they could make rabbit cheese. Awful.

I had no idea about Pliny and cheese, MM - thank you for the info. But I knew the Greeks ate it: that Cyclops Polyphemus ran a veritable dairy farm in The Odyssey - one that could rival the Yeo Valley Farmers here in the south-west. I wonder if the ancient Greeks liked yoghurt, too? I expect they did. I love Greek yoghurt, but it is very fattening.


Next we beached in the land of the Cyclopes. We'd put in at a little island off their coast. And since they don't know the first thing about sailing they'd left it uninhabited, though it teamed with wildlife.

We made a pleasant meal of wild goat, then next day I left everyone else behind and took my own crew over to the mainland. The first thing we saw was a big cave overlooking the beach. Inside were milking pens for goats and big cheeses aging on racks.

My men were for making off with the cheeses and the lambs that we found in the cave, but I wanted to see what manner of being made this his lair.



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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 28 Jan 2016, 19:52

It feels hard to believe that there was a time, not so very long ago, when yoghurt was unknown in these here parts, when did it become a normal part of the breakfast table, I can't quite recall? Was it the Mongols who brought it to Eastern Europe, thickening up nicely in goatskins hanging from their saddles?

But good Greek yoghurt with proper Greek honey and a big peach warm from the sun eaten outside by the Aegean, is there a better way to start the day?  Sigh. We're battening down the hatches ahead of Gertrude who's predicted to arrive during the night with gales through tomorrow and then heavy snow Saturday night and Sunday - I am sick, tired and weary of this weird winter. It seems ages since there's been any respite from rain and gloom but the roses are still blooming in the garden and all the stuff should have died back is burgeoning forth, I have had to hack back fuscias, buddleia and clematis that thought it was April during the brief moments when it hasn't been pelting down.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 28 Jan 2016, 23:19

Rabbit milk is pretty strong stuff! The wild doe only visits the "stop" and suckles her young once a day, and produces strictly limited quantities, so it has to have pretty high fat and snf contents. John Seymour, on the subject of sheep's milk cheese, states that the late lactation milk, after the lambs are weaned, was used to make a peculiarly hard cheese which was routinely part of army rations. I don't know what animal was used to perpetrate the tinned cheese in "compo" rations, but it was singularly unappealing.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 29 Jan 2016, 08:54

ferval wrote:
It feels hard to believe that there was a time, not so very long ago, when yoghurt was unknown in these here parts, when did it become a normal part of the breakfast table, I can't quite recall? Was it the Mongols who brought it to Eastern Europe, thickening up nicely in goatskins hanging from their saddles?

Kumis, Ferval.
Kumis

For the last two days, my broadband was awful, 5 minutes to download an e-mail and couldn't play youtubes at all. Seems to be OK now.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 29 Jan 2016, 10:36

In Roman times Spain was the bunny-capital of the world, and it was the Romans who led the way in facilitating their spread beyond the Iberian peninsula. When they took over the area (the Romans, not the rabbits) they also inherited and then developed into something of an industry in its own right the whole cuniculture thing (rabbit farms were extremely profitable throughout that whole period).

An interesting fact I found recently that I really should have found much earlier in life, I feel - apparently "Spain" from "Hispania" originated from the Phoenician/Punic cognate of the Hebrew "אי-שפניא (i-shfania)" which would literally mean "island of the rabbit".
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LadyinRetirement
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 29 Jan 2016, 11:05

I treated myself to some Halloumi yesterday - the Co-op does some which is prepared with non-animal rennet - the milk itself comes from an animal of course.  I haven't learned to love soya "milk" yet.  Interesting fact about the naming of Spain, Nordmann.

Actually I wanted to ask about something mundane.  Does anyone know a (or some) trade name(s) for sodium polyacrylate.  I had a leak downstairs - the leak is fixed but there is still some damp. I've been buying it online but have read that it is available in garden supplies but in one of the large stores that sell stuff for DIY etc I was told "Oh we don't do nothing like that, duck".  Ebay is okay and some places online do free delivery depending on how much one buys but it's always handy to be able to get something in a "real" shop.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 29 Jan 2016, 13:28

In garden centers sodium polyacrylate is sold as those granules you can add to peat/soil/compost to stop pots and hanging baskets from drying out too quickly (because it absorbs hundreds of times its own mass of water). I don't know a specific product name but I imagine the granules/crystals are readily available, at least in bigger garden centers.
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ferval
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 29 Jan 2016, 14:23

If those prove difficult to get, what about cat litter, the silica gel crystal variety in particular? This is the kind I get from my local bargain store - £1.99 a pack.

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LadyinRetirement
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sat 30 Jan 2016, 20:09

Ferval and Meles Meles, thanks for the suggestions about sodium polyacrylate.  I've bought a small packet of "polycryalide gel" from B&Q though I have ordered some from Ebay as a back-up.  I get the silica crystals cat litter when I can because they are light (I sometimes get low back pain).  I think Home Bargains is the place with the best price in my hometwon (for the kitty grit) with Wilko's being the second best.

Before I finished the Halloumi I had a closer look and on the packaging the wording states that it is made of cows' milk, ewes' milk and goats' milk!
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sat 30 Jan 2016, 21:34

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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Mon 01 Feb 2016, 12:43

We're currently being battered by storm Henry. It's the eighth named storm. Co-incidence? I would like to think it isn't.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Mon 01 Feb 2016, 17:08

And very well named it is, Henry Vlll is vicious and unpredictable. Between the car and Sainsbury's door I got caught in a stinging hailstorm, nearly blown over and thoroughly soaked yet earlier I was out in sunshine dead-heading outdoor geraniums.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Mon 01 Feb 2016, 17:22

There was rain overnight here (and it was wet most of yesterday).  There has been a wind blowing most of today and the midday weather forecast predicted a storm proper for the west and north Midlands later today.  It's not all bad news because the wind has dried off (partially at least) some washing on the line but I shall have to get the last knockings of the washing in very soon because of the predicted rain and also because it is getting dark.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Mon 01 Feb 2016, 17:26

His Grace, Henry, the eighth of that name, was indeed also keen on pruning the heads off his Tudor roses, especially when they failed to produce off-shoots ....

But it's been a lovely warm spring day here, blue sky, 15° in the sun, crocuses flowering, and all the wee birdies singing and flirting away ... but it's turned chilly directly the sun's gone in.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 04 Feb 2016, 09:08

BBC Breakfast have just had a thing on about rhubarb. They showed a lady rhubarb farmer in a field, explaining that you can actually hear rhubarb grow. The microphone definitely picked up a funny noise.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 04 Feb 2016, 14:58

That's creepy, rhubarb is abhorent anyway little on the thought that it groans in the growing as well as in the stomach. I'll probably have nightmares over that one..not unlike the Triffids. ugh.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 04 Feb 2016, 15:14

Actually, ID, all the rhubabr leaf top stalks are saying is, "Where's der light den? Move over! Coming through." The sound is enlarged by the forcing pot. I imagine all my plants have some sort of dialogue.I recall that runner bean who had an affair of sorts with an onion last year - even when I unwound it and set it up its pole, at night it went back. My neighbor has a hellibore that refuses to flower in her garden but makes a difficult entrance beneath a fence into mine to do so then smugly grows huge and blocks a path. It and I have dialogue.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 04 Feb 2016, 15:29

Islanddawn wrote:
That's creepy, rhubarb is abhorent anyway little on the thought that it groans in the growing as well as in the stomach. I'll probably have nightmares over that one..not unlike the Triffids. ugh.

What damnably heresy is this? Rhubarb is wondrous, ambrosial stuff. Slender, nacreous pink, forced rhubarb gently poached with stem ginger, a bit thicker in a crumble with proper custard, as a sauce with mackerel and the thick garden variety makes great chutney. Spiced rhubarb and date is particularly good. The only snag is it's become stupidly expensive - £3 for a small pack, extortionate.
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