Thursday, February 22, 2007

Herman Bing's Weiner Schnitzel

Had a go at Herman's wonderfully eccentric recipe for Weiner Schnitzel last night and was mightily pleased with the results. Charley read the bizarre cooking instructions out loud in his lovely booming voice and declared it to be closer to poetry than a recipe. The result was delicious - a "little fish" placed in a wiggle on top of the breadcrumbed and egg smeared bashed up veal, capers scattered at all four corners and a visually pleasing fried egg on top.

Poor old Bing had rather a sad demise once his particular brand of humour fell out of fashion. According to the insanely thorough IMDB filmography Bing tended to have very small - often uncredited - roles such as "butcher weighing sausages", "Hans, delicatessan man" and "stout passenger". The work dried up in the late 1940s though and Bing did himself in. I do quite fancy getting hold of a copy of "The Devil With Hitler" though as Bing plays Hitler's astrologer - that certainly has comic potential.

Am feeling very tired around the eyes today after an extended crying jag with Charley. Good to get it all out though I guess... It was Kate Bush that triggered it off, I started feeling tearful when I heard her on the radio before going to meet Charley in the pub. I was gripped by that "Arndale Centre" feeling. A kind of relief that I was going to be spending some time at last with someone who just KNOWS me - no need for any of the self critical self analysing behaviour that has been accompanying many of my encounters this week.

It is blind dates a-go-go.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Berlin Film Festival

"The Madonna of the Screen"

Just back from the Berlinale which was FABULOUS! There was a "City Girls" retrospective of some fabulous women centred films of the 1910s and 1920s.

Didn't get to see as many as I wanted to but managed to catch "Dancing Mothers" and loved Alice Joyce as Clara Bow's mum. The film has a fabulously feminist story line with Alice getting in her car and driving off into the sunset when she tires of her selfish husband and daughter. We don't seem to have an Alice Joyce recipe but we do have several Leila Hyams numbers (she was also in the film) and of course a couple from the pen (if not the actual kitchen) of Clara Bow.

Charley is coming over to dinner on Wednesday so will rustle him up something in tribute to the spunky flappers of the 1920s.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Tex Ritter's Chili

Well I guess when you've been out riding the range all day you want a chili that doesn't take too long to make, so Tex's chili recipe is pretty basic. I have to admit that I cooked it for a lot longer than 15 minutes and added 2 Oxo cubes just to (quite literally) beef it up a bit. It was delicious though. You can't go wrong with chili can you? Richard Arlen's version is tops so far though - and he aint no cowboy...

Talking of cowboys, I had a brief texting rat-a-tat-tat with the chaw-bacon this morning due to the fact that Brian Matthew is back on the radio after 10 weeks away. Managed to circumvent what looked like him angling for an invite over to the country housesit. No way. I was proud of myself.

But more excitingly I have booked my plane ticket to visit my co-collaborator in March. We will have all our recipes in the same place at the same time. Yipee-i-o. There will be some hardcore cooking going on somewhere in Delaware. Where IS Delaware?

I am already composing a list of things found in these film star recipes that are not available in the British corner shop - Hominy (still not sure what this is), Zwieback Crackers (?), Graham Crackers (I am sure that every American knows what these are but I don't...) and Maggie Sauce. Oh and of course some Bisquick! I can't wait!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

What is Hominy?

"After all, a girl is - well, a girl. It's nice to be told you're successful at it."

My new (and most expensive ever) film star recipe book has arrived on my doorstep and I am beside myself with excitement. There are some super fab recipes in there including one (at last) by Rita Hayworth. Also some pretty insane recipes including one for "Mutton Duck". This involves asking a butcher to carve up a piece of lamb so that it is more or less in the shape of a duck then having him chop a couple of bones up to make the bill and the tail. Very odd indeed. Also a female star I don't recognise gives a recipe for cooking domestic rabbit. A domestic rabbit you note - not a wild one...

The book throws up some interesting questions too. I now toss these across the ocean to my co-author Ruth - a) what the dickens is Hominy? b) is Kumis the same as Cumin? c) how does one make onion juice?