February 18, 2007

Filed under: Uncategorized — ros @ 8:36 pm

It appears that it is time for teenagers all over the country to panic madly, as they suddenly realise that their mocks were a disaster and their predicted  A level and GCSE grades may leave them destined for a future on the checkout of Kwiksave.

At least that is how it seemed as my inbox filled up with mail from various tutoring agencies begging for people to provide maths lessons. It was good from the perspective of my bank balance but rather horrendous for my sanity, as I realised that I was going to have start teaching at from 9am on most days and not have a chance of getting home until 10pm.

On weeks like this I want to leave the cooking to Goon so that dinner doesn’t get served up too late and I get a reasonable amount of sleep before the next early start. After all, I’d taught him one or two things. For example,  salmon with creme fraiche and dill pasta was now in his repetoire and he had produced some paprika chicken almost completely unaided. On Monday night, I thought I would try this. I suggested he did something with fish and then went off to teach an undergrad until 8:30. After the two hour lesson, I was rather perturbed to find that Goon was still in his office, waiting for further instruction on what to cook. This of course, defeated the whole purpose of getting him to cook as he would get homeeven later than me!

So that ended up being a very late night and a painfully early start. The same late night and early start happened on Tuesday. By Thursday, I was looking a lot like something from a bad zombie movie. Goon, rather embarrassed by his behaviour on Monday, offered to cook again, providing I could tell him what to do.

After a very laboured think, (I wasn’t capable of anything else by then) I decided that spare rib chops cooked slowly in a sweet and sour sauce with stir fried noodles and vegetables would be nice and easy.

sweet sour pork rib chops 

So I dragged Goon around Tesco to pick up ingredients and also got myself a nice pack of game paté, which I had been really craving since I’d just seen Jeanne’s delicious sounding home made chicken liver paté. Hopefully I’d  be able to enjoy some before running off the next morning.

The first thing I got Goon to do was make the sauce. It is a very easy one to make. You just get the juice from a tin of pineapples, add some sweetened water, ginger powder and then vinegar in small quantities until you  are happy with the flavour. A little tomato paste is added for colouring and, usually, I then add some onions and pepper which I have fried until just a little bit crunchy. Very simple!

Goon didn’t agree, and insisited I be in the kitchen to supervise. So I told him to start heating the pineapple juice and add enough sugared water to just cover the ribs in their little dish, while I chopped the vegetables. When I turned around I found that Goon had diluted the pineapple juice with enough water to fill the entire 1.5 litre pan. :roll: Admittedly I’d picked up some big chops but not THAT big.

Half an hour later, when the liquid had finally reduced to a sensible level, I helped Goon finish off the sauce and poured it over the rib chops, which were sitting snugly in a roasting tray and popped them in the oven for 1 hour 30 mins at gas mark 4.  

Goon had decided that this cooking business was all too difficult. So I ended up being in charge of the stir fry on the condition he would watch and learn. He sat on the floor while I made the noodles, describing carefully what I was doing at each stage. At some point I noticed that Goon was no longer responding to what I said. In fact it turned out that Goon wasn’t even sitting on the floor any more.

I eventually found him hiding behind the kitchen door with a sheepish look on his face. In his hand was an empty pack of game paté.

Grrr! Only Goon could eat a whole 150g of paté in the time it takes me to cook a stir fry.

Anyway, the pork was good. I added a tin of water chestnuts at the end because I think they have a fantastic texture. For the stir fry, I used rice noodles with spring onions, ginger, five spice, some left-over pancetta, and cashew nuts and fried them all together in a generous measure of sesame oil.

stir fried rice noodles

This wasn’t my best photography day, was it? Ah well. Apparently my parents have bought me a new camera. Fingers crossed photography should, at the very least, become more consisitent.


  1. Is Goon getting a big head with all the exposure he gets on your blog? He should write his own cookery book!! You know, I wouldn’t have had you tagged as a Game Pate Person ;)
    Looks delicious though!

    Comment by Freya — February 19, 2007 @ 8:44 am

  2. All praise the great and powerful goon! Wow Ros, GH only make reservations or fetches take-away…you’re so lucky.

    Comment by Vanessa — February 19, 2007 @ 11:47 pm

  3. Freya, I think Goon can’t decide whether all this exposure is exciting or embarrassing. Goon’s cookery book - now there’s an idea.

    Vanessa, since you wrote that comment Goons been struttng round the flat and flexing his muscles. It probably is best to not encourage him. ;)

    Comment by ros — February 23, 2007 @ 2:43 pm

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