Sunday, July 23, 2006

Yeeee hah! I've actually discovered how to create a tag cloud and insert it into my blog. This relatively simple action has taken me 2½ hours to do, I am learning, but slowly.

READING: I've always enjoyed reading crime fiction, and so I picked up a copy of Val McDermid's 'The Grave Tattoo' from the library as she is one of my favourite crime writers What amazingly complex plotting this book has. McDermid manages to link a modern murder set on a London housing estate to William Wordsworth, Samuel Taylor Coleridge and his famous poem, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Fletcher Christian and the Mutiny on the Bounty. The connections between them seemed very plausible, and I was absolutely hooked. I had thought I was going to be reading a "normal" whodunnit, but this was extraordinary. At the back of the book there is a bibliography - another first for a crime novel as far as I am concerned. McDermid's style of writing make all her books very easy reading, but they are certainly not simplistic.


Can anyone explain what Mini-Roundabouts are for ? I mean, what is the point? In quiet times they are not necessary, and in peak times the traffic on the main thoroughfare ignores them completely and you sit for hours trying to get into the system. They seem totally and absolutely useless...lorries drive right over them as if they can't see them- which they probably can't. Today I got carved up on a mini-roundabout by some boy racer with fluff for brains who fancied himself as Michael Schumacher. His in-car sound system belching out about 200 decibels of testosterone so that anyone within three blocks of him was forced to listen to what he considers as music. I was going to remonstrate with him that I was already ON the mini-roundabout and he couldn't just charge through, but figured that all I'd get for my pains would be the I decided to bring my road rage here and let you all have the benefit of it.

RECIPE: It is still horribly warm and humid and I can't bear the thought of hot food. This is an easy recipe, most of it can be prepared in advance. The quantities in the recipe make enough for 8 to 10 people if served as part of a buffet, but I also halve the quantities and make it for just four of us as a main dish.


2 Tablespns soy sauce
6 Tablespns brown sugar
6 Tablespns Balsamic vinegar
1 Lime, zest and juice
2 teaspns coriander seeds, lightly crushed
1 Kg Salmon fillet
4 small shallots, finely sliced
400g fine green beans, trimmed.
2 teaspns toasted sesame seeds

Combine the soy sauce, brown sugar, balsamic vinegar, lime zest and juice, and coriander seeds in a bowl and stir until the sugar dissolves.
Put the fish in a shallow container, pour ½ the marinade over it and chill for at least
30 minutes.
Blanch the beans in boiling salted water for one minute, drain and refresh.
Dry the beans on kitchen paper towel and arrange on a serving plate.
Grill the salmon for 6-7 minutes until just cooked through, and then cool.
Break up the fish into large chunks, put on top of the beans, and sprinkle with the finely sliced shallots.
Pour the remaining soy marinade over the fish and beans, garnish with sesame seeds and wedges of lime.

If you wish this to be a more substantial dish, cook some chinese egg noodles in the usual way, toss them with a little sesame oil and put them on the serving dish before you put the beans and salmon on top.

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