Sunday, August 27, 2006

Rhonda Fleming's Hollywood Ham Loaf

My lovely ex boyfriend Charley came round for dinner last night. As the man who re-introduced me to the pleasures of carnivorism after 12 years as a vegetarian I knew he would appreciate The Queen of Technicolor's Hollywood Ham Loaf. A loaf made almost entirely of MEAT is the perfect thing to cook up for a man like Charley.

There was much hilarity in the posh butcher’s shop in Crouch End when I strolled in to buy pork and ham. The recipe called for 2/3 lb cured ham and 1 and a 1/3 lb fresh pork. The three young turks in there joined me in trying to work out what half of these quantities would be as I was only cooking for two. It was a bit like one of those questions you get in a maths exam. What on earth is half of 1 and 1/3 of a pound? And what does that equate to in grams? I felt like some kind of granny in the days of decimalisation. Why did they get rid of shillings and farthings? Why can’t I buy fabric by the yard any more? Why can’t things just stay as they were in the olden days? Ah well, throw in the fact that the recipe had that mystery American measurement of “1 cup” and it could have been a recipe for disaster.

However, the more I cook my Silver Screen Suppers the more I have faith that everything is going to be OK. Even if those teenagers in the butcher’s shop say that they can’t mince the ham after mincing the pork due to the possibility of “cross contamination”. A chilled out attitude to quantities and the fact that no oven temperature or cooking time were given in the recipe resulted in an absolutely delicious brick of meat. Huzzah.

After dinner I treated Charley to two songs on the ukulele he bought me 5 years ago and I have only just learned to play. It was sort of bitter sweet as we sang along to “Aint She Sweet” and “Hey Good Looking” then reminisced a bit about the good old days. It is a great thing that we are still chums, brought together every now and then by a love of meat.

Two missed calls though from the chaw-bacon though. I declined an invite to go to a “Paris Swing Dance” earlier in the week so can only imagine that the first (around 10pm) was to tell me what I was missing. Luckily I didn’t get to the phone in time. The second was around 3am. Either the vast amount of alcohol consumed resulted in me sleeping right through the ringing of the phone OR my fairy godmother fiddled with the phone so that it didn’t actually ring.

Phoning me at 3am. What is he playing at eh?

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