Sky, Chicken and Dogs.
I've not written for a while because recently my evenings have been incredibly busy... Its Crufts! Ahh happy days, two hours of pure doggie fun! Its so exciting to know that all the strange and wonderful breeds I have only yet read about, are actually out there, owned by little old ladies in 'twin sets' and pearls, in this very country; Portuguese water dogs, Chow chows, Neapolitan Mastiffs, all living breathing and pooping! Gives me hope that I will be able to find an Italian Greyhound breeder, -when the time is right of course! (Italian Greyhounds didn't get picked for best of group! So no more of them in the series). This week held one of those increasingly rare occasion in which I was invited out, with people, to make with the fun. Socialising, is what they called it, anyway it meant I missed my pooch show, so I caught up on Fridays Crufts, today whilst I made the best ever roast chicken, there'll be more on that in a minute (this blogg's about food?). I was able to do this (the watching of Crufts, not the roasting of chicken) with my amazing new Sky plus. It can Record, Pause and Rewind live T.V! I say 'new' Sky Plus, but I've had the thing for months now, (and paid for months) but have only just got it working. (Warning: I'm going to moan now) So... I used to get broadband from B.T. Until one day in a crazy spontaneous break from my groceries shopping, I stopped to talk to a man promoting Sky from a little stand. He told me I could have Sky broadband, telephone and T.V. for the price of B.T. broadband, the lure of new electric goods proved too much and I signed up there and then.
I waited a week feverishly, eager for the installation person to come over with my new set top box of delights and when it finally arrived, in all its minimalist, white façade-ed glory, my fingers were twitching at my side like a cowboy at a duel, geared up to pause my first channel. There was one compromise that I had to make, the installation man used an unused satellite dish that was already connected to my flat, but who's wires went through a top floor neighbours basement. And because these 'neighbours' are never in their flat we weren't able to attach the second feed to the dish that is required for recording multiple channels simultaneously. Any way to cut an increasingly long and possibly not very interesting story short, not only am I missing functionality but one week after installation the Sky starts playing up and loses its signal completely. Numerous hours of calls to Sky later I managed to get an engineer to come and fix it, only he couldn't, because the dish was too high and went through another persons property. But finally this weekend the 'Heights Team' – not better qualified or more experienced engineers, but in fact cowboys, externally sourced from Sky willing to hang from dangerous ledges- got the thing working again. I'm glad they got it done, but really, the two men who came over, not a brain cell between them! They got me a new Sky dish, with two feeds (so far so good), they attached the dish to the garden fence. They also left the feed cables stretched along the longest part of the lawn to my flat, with not enough flex left to tac the cable around the garden. I promptly started my Saturday morning off by digging a 4 meter trench (with an axe!) in the rain to bury the cable. Pictures to follow!
Back to the best ever roast chicken. I got the recipe from Jamie Oliver's website, which I feel like I shouldn't be promoting (because clearly he's the only thing standing between me and culinary fame). You can get it here: http://www.jamieoliver.com/recipes/2008/01/11/fantastic_roasted_chicken
I did make a few changes:
Firstly I left out the ham, I blitzed the peeled and de-seeded lemon in a blender with an onion, garlic and the herbs and enough olive oil to make a good mushy stuffing, I then mixed this with the softened butter and stuffed it under the skin. I rubbed butter all over the bird and some leftover stuffing. I boiled the potatoes as instructed but left out the celeriac, when boiled I drained the water, chucked in some flour and gave them a quick shake (with the lid on the pan). I dropped a heap of vegetable fat in to the roasting pan containing the chicken and when this was hot and sizzling I scattered the potatoes around the bird and placed a sprig of rosemary on top. O.K. so its quite different from his (better) but use his timings.
Apart from my roast chicken the other great success of the night were my home made Yorkshire puddings, so much better then the store brought kind and so VERY easy to make!
Well I've had Delia's new T.V. show on pause for quite as long as I can take so 'Yorkies' recipes to come later! (There, 'old dogs' new food show, paused on Sky, it was all connected!!!)