Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Constance Bennett's Spanish Chicken

Version 3 of Constance's chicken was the best so far, by far. The secret being having a whole fresh chicken hacked into bits by the crazy Wood Street butcher I think. As Connie put it, "Take 2 fat hens jointed as for frying..."

Rosalind came over to borrow a 1930s frock for her Wind in the Willows party. She selected the Fritzi of California number, an excellent choice. Both the ladies were home too so we had a lovely al fresco dinner in the garden. We discussed how delicious the chicken was and how women of our generation have got into the habit of buying bland cuts of chicken vacuum packed by the supermarket. As Rosalind observed, when we hear a piece of plastic being pierced by a knife we think, "Ooh, someone is cooking..." But the difference between that kind of chicken and this was definitely noticable. From now on I'll try and frequent the butcher for my chooks, even though he thinks I am a figure of fun with my absurd questions about how to cook meat.

Ha ha! I am watching a great Lana Turner film on TCM and faded fashion model Ann Dvorak was just escorted out of a restaurant as she was smashed. A man offered to get her a cab and she said, "What a gentleman. My mother told me that if I stuck around for long enough I'd eventually meet one." Fabulous line, I may memorise that!

Ooh, Lana just called Barry Sullivan a "small time chisler". Ha ha!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Carole Lombard's Cherry Pie

Just coming up for air after the madness of the past couple of weeks. Entering into a new period of calm. Watching Judge Judy during the day and looking for a job.

The folks came for lunch last week and I had another bash at Carole Lombard's Cherry Pie. My ma was very impressed that I had stoned all the cherries AND made the pastry. I was genuinely shocked when she said that she never made pastry any more, just bought the roll out stuff. Role reversal / roll reversal! I used crumbled macaroons instead of breadcrumbs and although the texture was good, I think the pie was too sweet as a result. I think I need to look for sour cherries.

Not anticipating that I would make a pie, my mum had made a raspberry pie and brought it with her. When Grace got home from work she set upon my cherry pie with gusto. She planned to eat a big piece right there and then and take another big piece to work next day. She was ranting about how much she loved my pie and when I told her that my mum had also brought a pie which I was planning to put in the freezer she asked with much excitement: "What kind of pie?" which made me laugh and launch into a round of "Who ate all the pies? Who ate all the pies?" What a pie-monster!

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Janet Gaynor's Ice Box Cookies

I have to say thankyou to Larry Hodges for this pic of Janet Gaynor playing table tennis. He has a whole website dedicated to celebrities playing ping pong. How fab.

Just a little report on the meeting with our possible publisher ES. I rustled up some Janet Gaynor cookies on the fly as I only had a day or so notice of our meeting. Luckily I still had two nice boxes from the cake supplies shop on Hoe Street. Imagine my horror when I passed it on the bus yesterday to see that it has not only closed down but has effectively been razed to the ground! Is there no need for elaborately iced cakes any more?

It is all systems go on the proposal. I have a LOT of work to do in the next week or so - writing. It is all very well cooking the dishes but it all has to be translated into words which isn't so easy. Plus I have the Joan Crawford and Hollywood Glamour lectures to work on, AND the cruise lectures. AND a job application. It's a good job I don't have a boyfriend any more! No time!

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Loretta Young's Chiffonade Salad

"I found out you can learn a lot about yourself as a person...
while you're learning how to use fashion in your life.”

I too am learning how to use fashion in my life at the moment. I am ploughing through the mountain of clothes in my room trying to make some rational decisions.

Had a lovely night with Ginger, the newlyweds and Dick - who I am surprised to see doesn't have a blogname yet. Surely he has been involved in a supper before now? I made Loretta's salad again and the secret is obviously to chop all the non-leaf items quite small. Dick asked all and sundry if they were happy to eat a salad containing egg, onion, beetroot and gherkins and Ginger's response was, "it's heavy on the pickle, and that's always good in my book."

I am missing all the cowboys and my sister of the skillet like mad but the skies are sunny, the Rosé is flowing and all is well in the Stowe.