Monday, 31 May 2010

Back In The Real World

Finally back home and totally exhausted.....and I was only taking pictures and recording the weekend...hats off to the guys for some excellent work this weekend and some cracking food, especially given the high visitor numbers. Lot's of new and interesting thoughts and ideas to feed back into the project later on throughout the year.

As it turns out I didn't manage to take any more video today, mainly because there wasn't anything that warranted it, perhaps next weekend will prove to be a little more fruitful in that respect. You'll have to wait a short while for pictures, video and a full report from this weekend....family stuff calls, but I'll update you all, probably tomorrow and let you know most of the plans for next week before we get back to the Palace on Friday. I've also got to take a good look at the phone to see if it was responsible for the flaky signal and service I was getting for the last 2 days or whether it was the service provider.....we'll just have to see.

The big problem for the rest of the week is remembering that today was a Monday (bank holiday) and that there are only 3 days before it's back to the grind, not 4 as it really feels like a Sunday right now.

That's all you get for the moment, thanks to all the visitors who came to the kitchen this weekend.....and all of you reading this as you've made this a record month for visitors to the blog and my inane ramblings....cheers!

TTFN

Sunday, 30 May 2010

Late Night Log In

My word, somewhat later that I had planned to be doing this, so it'll be much shorter than expected or indeed planned as I really should be in bed by now!

It's been a really odd day today and not just because I've been in 'civvies' taking pictures and the like.....the visitors have been odd too!
There has been a definite sense of visitors either having come to see what we are up to and being really interested, or having no interest at all and only tolerating us because it was raining and they didn't want to be outside getting wet.....very odd.

As I tweeted, not as productive as we could have been recipe wise, but very good ideas wise and lots more thoughts added to our general pile of things that are interesting that need looking at.

That has to be it for now as I'm faling asleep whilst trying to write this post. More tweets planned for tomorrow, as well as some top quality roast beef and other wonderful things. We are also collecting the data and thoughts for proper posts later in the weekend or early next week.

Night night one and all.

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Joust A Minute!

Well the next weekend of cookery looms large and I did say that I'd let you know what we were planning to be doing didn't I?

Well first of all we'll have Robin back with us after his weekend off last time, so at least there will be someone in the kitchen who is competent at making pastry. Robert will be joining him and Marc H at the stoves for this event so that he can have a go at some of the recipes he spends his time in writing down and reading about....a new(ish) pair of eyes and hands could make all the difference to some of the interpretation....you never know what actually having a go at something you spend all your time reading will bring out do you?
I on the other hand will be carrying the camera this time, recording what goes on...specific stages of the recipes for later scrutiny as well as generic shots of working...if I can find any work being done to record that is! This should mean that I will be able to Tweet you updates as we work because I will be able to carry my phone in the kitchen (on silent of course) where I get a fairly good signal....it'll make a change from having to balance on chairs in upstairs offices to send you all updates during the event. I'm guessing that there will be more poor quality phone camera pictures than huge blocks of text....well up to 140 characters at least, but who knows...at least they'll give you some idea of what's going on to be able to make a little more sense of my blog ramblings than usual....but who knows what will transpire technologically wise....could all run out of battery power...Note to self: charge all batteries!!

Carter & Pick have a mind to look at other peoples interpretations of recipes and compare them to our own versions, cooking both examples and discussing as they go with the public...as well as all the usual sort of thing that they do like setting the scene for visitors about what they will see in the rest of the kitchen and making them (the public) feel at ease with asking us all questions.

Dave will be shoved outside into Master Carpenters Court to get people playing with our own mini jousting knights game


where you can try your hand at jousting, all be it on a small scale...but based on period toys.
If you do visit you can also have a go a spotting Jorge as he's been seconded out of the kitchen to help with the joust that's running in the East Front gardens. For extremely complicated reasons (involving someone who has no real interest in history) this is NOT a Tudor joust but is a joust from the 1470's....please don't ask me why, just come along and enjoy the spectacle. Knowing the guys that are running this....they ran the Tudor joust last year and the extremely successful joust at the Tower of London, I can guarantee that it will look absolutely superb and it will be one of the few opportunities to see a joust run under proper conditions...as opposed to the red knight vs black knight Hollywood style joust you tend to get a lot of.

Of course, the June event is the weekend after and that should be pretty much the same sort of thing...just no big jousting (Dave will still be out there with the mini knights though). We will be a little more limited with what we can cook on the June event as due to the set-up for the music festival we don't have access to the ovens or washing up facilities large enough to cope with the spit and drip tray...so no baking or roasting that weekend....still plenty to keep us busy though.

That's pretty much it I suppose...feel free to ask questions via the comments here or Twitter, especially as we go through the weekend, it would be nice to have your input.

So until the weekend....TTFN

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Cooking The Cokentryce.....

or Blue Peter part the second.

So where were we? OK, after a quick re-read of what I wrote last time to get back up to speed it's now time to deal with what we did with the beast after it was constructed I suppose. Before we get there though we need a brief re-cap and a moment of scene setting to get us all in the mood that I was in for the next evening of filming... a lousy one!
As I said in the last post on the subject and without wanting to break my self imposed 'house rule' of being fairly positive about all the work that we do (within reason) I was being asked to re-hash the same tired old myths and clich├ęs about the past....they didn't drink water because they knew it was 'dodgy' so they all drank beer and wine*....Henry VIII held massive lavish feasts all the time with tables groaning with tons of complicated dishes, all that sort of thing. As I said before, there was a brief chat with the director and the HRP press department representative to put forward my corrections....all of which were pretty much dismissed by comments such as 'I read it in a book, you must be wrong', 'that's not what they teach in the national curriculum' and the crowning glory...'we've already had a graphic created to illustrate that and it cost a lot of money so you'll just have to say it!'...so after a pretty dire drive home and a little thinking time, coupled with the work already done and the PR for the Palace, the decision was made....'prostitute yerself for the cash and get it done with as quick as you can!!'...hence any reticence in the tweet about transmission times...it'll look good, but will be full of the sort of tosh that we aim to eradicate with the work that we do....it's done, so let's make the best of it with the pictures that we've got.

*this idea that people knew that water was bad or contained illness causing 'things' is only something that was discovered in the late 19th century, before then people were pretty sure it was bad air that made you ill, beer was drunk for it's food content, the calories it contained, it was a liquid food....besides bad water=bad beer. This is just one of the really stupid myths about the past that perpetuate due to poor logic and even poorer thinking...like saying they disguised the taste of rotten meat with really expensive spices! It stems from an attitude that in the past people must have been worse off that we are today, less educated....why is it still difficult for people to conceive that in the past they liked spiced food, just like we do?!?!?

Thursday was spent, mostly in a meeting about stuff that I'm not currently at liberty to divulge, whilst I left Robin to put together a haslet of fruit so that there was one to have made earlier...making the cokentryce was really the side project for this gig, the haslet was the main deal as this was what was to be the 'have a go at home' make of the show...and to be fair they had done a pretty good job with their version, wrapping the string of fruit and nuts around a bamboo skewer and suspending it in/on a deep baking tray to cook in the oven and baste with batter....which was where there were a few subtle problems, but I'll come to them a little later...you will though find that the cokentryce was the more interesting for Robert to photograph, so there are lots of shots of that and not so many of the haslet, after all how often do we get the chance to play at being Baron Frankenstein?

When we left on Wednesday, the beast looked like this...

another shot of the finished animal



and after one or two shots for publicity and the like which were taken whilst the crew were setting up their gear

gissa kiss



we got on with the process of sticking the beast onto the spit. Now I really need to point out a couple of things at this time, firstly although Robert was rapidly 'employed' as the official photographer for the shoot and snapped away like a demon, he was limited to when he could shoot because of the noise of the camera shutter, so certain stages were unfortunately missed out. It also is important to understand that the crew weren't interested in the beast being cooked properly, just looking like it was cooked...in other words, slightly coloured from the heat of the fire and covered in the green batter, specifically to hide the join as that was a major part of their script, it wasn't to be eaten, but fortunately was to be taken away with them for more shooting, so we didn't have to work out how to dispose of it...hooray!?!
Getting it onto the spit wasn't too hard, just keeping it there was though...so we dragged out one of our oldest spits which has the forked dogs made to fit it and used that one....shame it weighs a ton!

adjusting on the spit


We then stuck it in front of the heat and tried to 'cook' it as best we could so that it could get to a stage with which to batter it....see how much I love this job...

see how I love this job


Turning the spit is something that I find detestable at the best of times and this was no exception.
Quite shockingly all of the wiring stood up to the job and the neck and head remained where they were supposed to be

on the spit


I think that what was even more surprising was that the head didn't over cook, being that much closer to the fire we were sure that it would burn, but how wrong we were...in fact it all started to cook quite nicely, which was a shame because it meant that the fat started to pour out of the animal, mostly from the front end because the skin was thinnest and this was cooking quickest....fat that meant that we were now turning a massive non-stick turkey-pig beast which it was obvious batter would never stick to! All the while this was happening, the director was sorting out the shooting order and the crew and HRP team was setting up the other room by the charcoal stoves ready for later on and the haslet.
The director was keen to press on and kept pushing for an answer as to when it would be ready....should they re light this area later and do the haslet make first or what?...it was also obvious by now that I was less than popular with her and that Robin was being groomed for the spotlight with the cokentryce whilst I would have the haslet to work with....no biggie as we're a team and neither of us is fussed about being in front of the camera, but the sudden change of plans from what was arranged earlier in the week seemed to be a direct result of the night before and the slight set to we'd had.

Robin discusses the plans


When it was obvious that there wasn't going to be a 'good' time to start the basting, Robin set to and wrapped up as protection against the heat before he began pouring the batter on

basting the cokentryce 1


Interestingly in that shot, the red dot on the beast is the laser centering mark from the IR thermometer we have...shame I can't remember the temperature though, not that it was important as there was no way that anything was anywhere near to being cooked.

basting the cokentryce 3


basting the cokentryce 5


basting the cokentryce 7


As luck or perhaps skill would have it, Robin had knocked up just enough batter for one coat...which began to cook nicely and cover the join before promptly starting to fall off into the drip tray!
Some speedy setting up by the camera guys and a swap around from me to the presenter (Joel I think his name is) meant that the snippet could be had with the beast looking suitably 'the part'

sorting the script


finally starting shooting


Shockingly Joel was pretty damn good as a turn broach...payed attention to the instructions about speed and such like and cooked it like he'd been doing it for years.
This all went without a hitch and when the shot was done we had to take the spit off from the fire to stop it cooking too much because they wanted to come back to it later on when the haslet of fruit was ready to put onto the spit.

Having set the table up with all the ingredients needed, all in TV friendly little bowls and ready to roll, we then had the interesting discussion about the recipe..

discussing the plan for the haslet slot


in which it became very clear why their haslet looked a little odd

the Blue Peter haslet of fruit


They had decided to do the recipe research themselves and had made a literal version of the recipe...just like you would with a modern one, no room for interpretation, no taking into account missing ingredients and the subtle nuances of early recipes...so no eggs in their batter...no beer come to mention it either, they had substituted apple juice....and for our segment could we not use beer either please....so water it was then, hmmm yummy.
After a little more script checking

more script checking


The subject of 'idiot boards' was brought into sharp focus....read the 'facts' off the board please and try not to ad lib anything...thank you very much....at this point things were made much worse by the presenter (Helen)

smile you're on telly


who kept telling me that I should be excited....why I asked...'cos you're gonna be on telly!!...well pardon me if I let out a woop de do...as if that was somehow the pinnacle of things...I've been on telly, it's overrated and like most things in life, unless you are stupefyingly lucky or really really really good at your job, you're going nowhere on the telly, it's not a passport to fame and riches and I wouldn't want it to be either...but I digress.

Doing my best to perform like a trained monkey and both read the boards and point to the ingredients whilst not straying away from the scripted answers...

I seem to be adjusting the volume of an invisible telly!!


I struggled on manfully, thinking about the cash!
It really felt like they may as well have not bothered with having me there, at least Robin got to answer his questions how he chose to (again within reason, but pretty much his own words)...they could have just had one of their people read the boards instead of trying to validate their programme by using the staff at Hampton Court...can you tell how miffed I was yet?

guess what I'm thinking


how about now?
Still, we struggled through and got the shot done for them

you're on tv, be excited man!


more behind the scenes



and that was pretty much the end of our involvement on screen. After we stuck the beast back in front of the fire for them, we offered to show them how to put the haslet onto the spit, but they knew best thank you so we sloped off to do a bit of the clearing up as they first of all draped the string of fruit and nuts onto the spit so that it resembled a Christmas garland on a mantle piece, then managed to wind it on in such a way that whichever way the spit was turned it unwound from one end or the other!?! Still, in the end they got their shots and that's what was important for them.

By the time it came to do some shots for the programme trailer

the face says it all


and the ubiquitous team shot

The presenters


Things were all sweetness and light again. All that was left to do was to wrap the animal up for them so that they could take it away.
Once they had packed up and left we were left with the washing up and putting away of all the stuff that we had used...a mighty cup of tea and then another tedious drive home and that was that.

As I tweeted earlier, transmission is set for Thursday 3rd June at 4.35 p.m. then it will be on the BBC iplayer for the next 7 days...don't expect much, I'm not. I was going to say don't blame me, but on reflection, do. I deserve any and all criticism that it gets, but at the time, I'm afraid I was just thinking of the cash.

There'll probably be another post before we crack on with this coming bank holiday weekend of cookery and cavorting...I'd forgotten to say earlier but there's a joust happening at the Palace over the weekend too; but it does need a little bit of an explanation so stay tuned for the next post (probably tomorrow) and some details of what to expect from the weekend at the Palace...it's my turn to do the recording this weekend as Robert gets a go at cooking, so fingers crossed I should be able to tweet 'n go much more regularly, with possibly a blog post as well during the day, but at the moment I'm promising nothing.

All of the pictures from the BP shoot that I uploaded to Flickr are now unlocked for your viewing pleasure....enjoy, you know that I didn't.

TTFN

Saturday, 22 May 2010

Flikr Flim Flam Redux

Looks like the Flikr badge in the right hand column is playing up again.....no need to comment for me though this time thanks, hopefully it'll sort itself out when I update the images for the next post.

TTFN

Here's One We Made Earlier!

Face it, you knew that title was coming, well those who are au fait with Blue peter at least! Disappointingly the phrase wasn't used as I think that they try to avoid it nowadays...still never mind at least it's all finally over with now.

A bumper 76 images are now in their own set at the Flikr site that should just about cover the making of the cokentryce that we did for this programme, shame I can't say the same for the haslet of fruit, but that was the one we made earlier as Robin knocked one together whilst I spent my time in a rather long, but very productive meeting.

I have to confess that this was probably the least enjoyable piece of TV work I think that I've done and it's a shame that it was only the thoughts of the extra money that it'll bring to the pay packet that got me through it! Why you ask, well simply because I can't stand having to stand there repeating other peoples misconceptions and fallacies about the past as if they were my own, you know the sort of thing.....junk like "they didn't drink water because they knew it made you ill" and sensationalist figures taken completely out of context to make the past seem wild and wacky....cos' it's telly aint it?
Thankfully we managed to wheedle out some of the rubbish in a meeting on the Wednesday night, but there were a few angry words as they'd sorted their script out and scripted my responses and weren't happy about changing things...still if we'd had a little more than a weeks notice for the whole thing and slightly more than 2 days notice on the script then things would probably have been a little smoother. Anyway what's done is done and I'll be out in the wilds of the Internet spouting claptrap and reading off of an idiot board for eternity now....blamed for perpetuating shonky myths about the past by all and sundry....but I'm not bitter....much!

I mean it's not like there's evidence for the cokentryce being cooked at Henry's Court or anywhere that I could find in the sixteenth century, but it looks weird and odd so that fact doesn't matter...but I digress, at least we got to have another go at making one and a lot sooner than anyone had anticipated....even better, Robert was on hand too to take a metric shed load of pictures over the two days....all in all just over 850 of all sorts, so the set at Flikr is only a very small selection but should give you an idea of how we made it, pop over there to have a look at the full load, but here's a shortened version of the make...

Given the short notice I was really surprised that the butcher could provide the 'parts' we needed, so hats off to Dales for sterling work there.

The pig


We started with the pig and for ease of availability, a turkey

The turkey


both animals had been through the wringer, the pig having it's trotters almost cut off and the turkey with it's head only just attached....still, I suppose beggars can't be choosers, at least it still had the head...shame the same couldn't be said about the feet!
Now Robin and I had always planned to take the front of the turkey and add the back of the pig and this plan was consolidated by the lack of feet on the fowl...unfortunately the BBC had assumed the other and were quite miffed that we were insistent on doing it our way...as it turned out they were more than happy with it in the end as it looked...'realistic'. The plan for the making of the beast on Wednesday was for us to just get on and make it, with them recording it, they will then convert the 2 1/2 hours into a 30 second or so time lapse to slot into the show...I'm not sure how it'll look being so compressed, but the BBC seemed positive about it so we'll just have to wait and see, but again, I digress....

Having lopped the front off the pig, Robin then proceeded to trim out the excess meat and bone out the rib cage and spine so that we had a sufficient area of skin to wrap around the turkey

trimming the pig 2


Whilst Rob was sorting the pig out, I tidied up the turkey and stitched up some superfluous cuts....and in this shot was attempting cosmetic repair of the pig's front legs...which were going to be used as well, but we gave up on that idea.

at work


Of course doing this is all very well, but don't forget that there's a camera being poked at you all the time....I'm pretty sure that I'd blown my nose before we started...

action shot!


after trimming the back legs off of the turkey and removing the parsons nose

trimming the turkey


we could finally offer the two halves up to check for a fit...

offering the pig up


It's at this point that Marc H's description...'it's the culinary version of an automotive cut 'n shut'...is the most apt I think.

All that's then left to do is to sew the two halves together and Robert is your fathers brother....yeah, of course it's that simple!

Firstly we skewered the two halves to each other to hold it all together whilst I did the sewing

Rob practices his matador moves


This was as I say, easier said than done, the pig skin was tough to get through and the turkey skin just the opposite, so thin that it easily tore

more sewing


It wouldn't win any award for neatness and there's no career in cosmetic surgery waiting for me.
Combined with those problems, the heat in the kitchen because of the lights and fire and the fact that all the doors were closed meant that both animals were starting to sweat grease...and lots of it

look at the grease


which wasn't exactly conducive to an easy time either. Still, after about an hour of sewing I ended up with the last few stitches at the delicate end of Mr Piggy (and yes I can guarantee it was a boy!) before the job was finished

ahem...the delicate end!


All we had to do then was to wire up the head to keep it erect for the cooking process

offering up the head for positioning


inserting the wire into the neck



and finally the beast was complete

the finished beastie



As I say, there are a load more images of the process over at the Flikr site, at the moment I've restricted what you can see to the making of the beast....next post will be the cooking and the recording of the actual show...I'll release the other images then.

TTFN

Thursday, 20 May 2010

The Plan Of Attack

A beautiful day outside and another one stuck inside all day!

What's the plan for today you ask....well lots to get sorted before the recording starts at 6 tonight...a green batter to make for the beast to be coated in, almonds to blanch for the haslet as well as all the fruit to chop up....and as it's Blue Peter there has to be the ability to have one "we made earlier" so about 2ft of fruit and nut thredding to do too.

Throw in a couple of meetings and sprinkle liberally with mugs of tea and you'll have a fair idea of the rest of this sunny day for Robin and myself...oh, almost forgot, he's teaching a class in about an hours time as well so busy busy busy.

Updates later, time and signal allowing.

TTFN

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Brief Blue Peter Update

OK, going to keep it short and sweet because I'm exhausted and have to get some kip before another long day at the Palace....lots to prep for the filming tomorrow evening as well as a couple of meetings to squeeze in as well!

Today went pretty well, even considering the reservations I had about making a cokentrice in the first place. After a bit of thought Robin and I worked out a plan of attack and were ready to crack on when the crew finally made their way through the rush hour traffic. Now we had planned to stick the front of the bird (a turkey in this case) on to the back of the pig, mainly because it was easier to fit them together that way, but also because although they had just about kept the head on the bird they had cropped its feet off which destroyed the potential look for us. Unfortunately the crew assumed it would be the other way round and it took a few minutes to convince them to listen to the "experts"...after all that's what we are being paid and employed for surely?

As always, Robin played a blinder and there was no way I'd have managed to build the creature without him.....he did all the cutting and removal of surplus to requirement bits then I got to sew it all back together....I think that any thoughts of a fall back career in cosmetic surgery are truly misplaced.

As it turns out they were really pleased with the results (you'll have to make do with the Twitter image at the moment as it seems most of my pictures are extremely blurred!!) and we now await the filming tomorrow to see if it will stand up to going on the spit and in front of the fire!?!?

Off to bed now, but will try to keep you updated throughout the day tomorrow, here if time allows but otherwise via tweets for you all.

Pictures to follow when the dust has settled....and Robert has time to burn them onto a DVD for me.

TTFN

What's The SP with BP?

Having been berated by no.1 fan for not telling about the Blue Peter gig earlier I supppse I should let you know what it's all about shouldn't I?

Seems that they are doing an entire Tudor special programme and the bulk of it is coming from good old HCP...including a stint from yours truly and Robin...is it me or does that sound a little too much like some kind of cheesy knock off superhero duo?....no, just me then!
In fact, for those of you familiar with the BP format, we're providing the cook along make, well the inspiration for it at least.

The big problem with it all though is that they have got a lot of their 'facts' fron external or outdated sources and have embedded these so deep into the makeup of the show that changing things is proving to be VERY tricky. I've done telly stuff before based on other peoples 'research' and come out of it feeling like I've been had so I'm not looking forward to the next couple of evenings.....who knows, perhaps they'll have listened this time!

Anyhow, they want a cokentrice made....which is what we are doing tonight...and then a haslet of fruit...tomorrow night and the inspiration for their make. If you have a chance when it's broadcast (I'll try and find out dates for you) to watch and try their recipe then I'd be interested to see what you think...if you can't watch it live then no doubt it'll be on auntie beeb's iplayer.

Hopefully more updates later.

TTFN

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Beaten By The Clock!

Time has defeated me in my quest to post a meaningful entry about the last weekend of cookery...I have got to get some kip now as the next couple of days will be long and tiring....both physically and mentally, looks like we'll be recording until 9.30/10.oo p.m. each day, then add the washing up time and commute!

the shopping list took longer than I thought and I still have to transfer Roberts pictures from the email to the Flickr account....interesting with the shopping though that they do actually have the right wine in stock, well as right as it's possible to get at this short notice.

So, stay tuned for a re-scheduled post that will also include details of the Blue Peter gig as well and plans for the next weekend of cooking...all in all it should be a bumper post when it arrives!

So saying though, it's also possible that I'll pop something up when we finish with the filming each day, but no promises there either.

TTFN

Monday, 17 May 2010

So Where Was I?

Finally managed to get all the unexpected work done, well at least I've got it to a stage where it can be discussed at a meeting later in the week...no details for you yet, but it will have a dramatic effect on the way that we work behind the scenes so I certainly aim to keep you all abreast of the situation when it is prudent to do so.

That not withstanding, I found more work was headed my way just when I thought that the coast was clear and now Robin and myself will be working late on Wednesday and Thursday this week recording for the BBC programme Blue Peter.

I'll update you all on what that entails tomorrow as I'm in need of an early night now, I should also be able to fill in the blanks from the last weekend and let you in on plans for the next one....suffice to say that the Blue Peter gig is doing something I hate....talking about something that someone else has provided erroneous information about but finding it's too late to get the topic changed, especially as the 'truth' isn't as interesting!!

Anyway, to bed and more whinging to follow tomorrow.

TTFN.

Thursday, 6 May 2010

A Plea For Posterity

OK, so nothing to do with cooking or the Tudors, but for those in the UK who are interested in social history and would like to add to the written record so that in the future we can have a better archive to help out people like us, have a look here at the Mass Observation site.

Their project is large and ambitious and there are all sorts of links to follow on the page to join in with their recording (providing that you are male, 16-44 and don't live in the South East or West at this current time)....they do though want everyone to join in with the one day observation and provide a diary for posterity.

All the details are there when you click on the links , do make sure you read the instructions carefully as if you miss out the permission text then they won't be able to use your diary...so go on....help a historian...you know you want to.

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Possible Picture Problem Procrastination!

Just to let you all know that due to a slight hard drive problem with his laptop, Robert wasn't able to furnish me with copies of all the pictures that he took before we parted ways on Monday evening.

All this just means that we will be a small delay before we can show you what we did....until then it's just prose all the way I'm afraid....not my strong suit!!

Off to think about what to say that will make some sense without pictures....

TTFN

Sunday, 2 May 2010

Vote Of Thanks

While I remember I really do have to say thanks to Jorge and Marc H for all the advertising of the blog that they have done of late and especially today...cheers guys, I owe you a beer for all that 'hard sell' you have done, it's most apreciated.

Plans 0 - Drain 1

Well all those plans for this evening seem to have gone awry haven't they!?!

Robert found better/more interesting things to occupy him and Marc H and I ended up in the pub with some of the warders so cooking, recipes and thoughts of planning went right out of the window!

So saying though we have sorted out tomorrows plan of attack, or rather have confirmed my plans as being possible/plausible and have realised that due to my idiocy I forgot
to order half the ingredients for one of the dishes I'd planned for Monday...still not sorted out a solution for the error but I'm thinking that knowing there is a problem is at least halfway to a solution!

More news tomorrow and hopefully a little time to keep you updated during the day.

TTFN

Saturday, 1 May 2010

8 Men Went To Mow...

Did we notice being down to an 8 man team today? Hell yes!

As you'll have noticed there were no tweets or posts once the working day began, quite simply because there was never an oportunity to take 5 minutes out for a break and an update. It would be unfair to say that we've been rushed off of our feet, or super busy but what it has been is constant....lots of lovely people to talk with one after another, after another.

After a little bit of a shaky start things settled down quite nicely and Robert managed to take a good number of pictures that should illustrate quite well the three recipes that we prepared today...the plan for tonight is a swift pint in the pub over which we will discuss how the day went, what the images look like and what we will do tomorrow....after that, if I can get a mobile signal, I'll update you all.

Carter and Pick also made some interesting progress so I have been told, just got to pin them down to find out what it was.

For now though it's time to empty the washing machine and hang all our cloths an aprons up to dry.....washday hands here we come!

TTFN

The Missing Link

For reasons that aren't that important we don't have Robin or Ross with us this weekend...without doubt they will be missed as Jorge was at Easter.... The big question though is what exactly is it that they both do of a weekend that is so vital but so taken for granted by the rest of us that it won't get done?

So far the gueses, which obviously discount them as we do know that they do these jobs, incude ... Sorting out the charcoal, firelighting sticks and the waste bin for Robin, sorting out the water jugs, spit and drip tray for Ross.

There has to be something that we've overlooked.....perhaps it will be revealed tomorrow.

Anyhow, all plans are sorted, the shopping is here and come the morning I'm sure that we will be raring to go....until then, bed calls.

TTFN