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Showing posts from August, 2012

A will of iron: take a bow, Tony

A couple of weeks ago I mentioned the BBC2 Horizon programme (Donks, fish and muffin tops) about how fasting can make you healthier, and slimmer, and  recklessly announced I was going to adopt the two day fasting/five day eating routine. And I did. For 2 days and 5 days. Then I promptly forgot all about it. Tony, however, decided to hit the fasting ground running and for the last three weeks his daily diet has comprised of soup, a few grilled vegetables on some days and hot drinks. I think it was the combination of the Horizon programme with the Hairy Dieters' determination to reduce their weight and body fat (one of them reckoned he was the human equivalent of foie gras...) that propelled him into extreme action. But I have to say that Tony does have a will of iron once he gets into the right frame of mind. He also says that he finds it much easier to go with the draconian measures rather than cutting down. There's no such thing as, 'I'll just have the one boiled egg&#…

I heart tomatoes

I Y tomatoes. Not in a salad where their seeds and juice run into the leaves and make them soggy but salted on a plate of their own, or chopped and cooked for a few minutes over a high heat in some olive oil and hot spice and served on toast, or stuffed with a savoury mince and topped with grated cheese and flashed under the grill. I like them sliced on top of a cheese and potato pie and sprinkled with oregano. (Does anyone make cheese and potato pie anymore?) I like them picked from the vine and eaten while they're still warm. I like them on a Margherita pizza. I like cherry tomatoes on the vine sprinkled with coarse sea-salt and roasted in the oven until their skins plump up but don't burst. I like them slow roasted. I like sun-dried tomatoes, sun-blush tomatoes, green tomato chutney, home-made salsa. And I think this tomato likes me. My step-daughter grew this one - in fact she had three perfectly heart-shaped tomatoes from her father-in-law's greenhouse. John died last …

OMG - chips. Let me rephrase that. CHIPS!!

I interviewed BBC Radio Wales’ iconic gay radio presenter, Chris Needs, a week ago (for Real Port Talbot) and he has converted me. I can now stand up and say, proudly: my name is Lynne Rees and I am an Actifryer. 
Chris has a clutch of homes in different parts of the world and is so attached to the Tefal Actifry he has one in each of them. I quizzed him about the chips. C’mon, are they really that good? Are they as good as deep-fried home-cooked chips? Can you make enough chips in one of those things? Yes. Yes. And yes. 
There was only way to find out.
The secret to getting them crispy is to make sure all the starch is rinsed from the raw chips and they’re completely dry when you put them in.
I made 500gr of chips (about 2 decent sized, but not enormous, jacket-type potatoes) and used 7.5 ml of olive oil. Definitely enough for two people. Or one greedy one.
You can make up to a kilo adding a maximum of 14 ml of any oil you like. Even as I pressed the ON button, and heard the appliance blow…

Donks, fish and muffin tops

Excuse me while I get this out of my system and avoid indigestion…
I’m a confident driver. I’m a safe driver. I’m not over-cautious or intimidated by motorway driving. I’m aware of other motorists. I consciously use my indicators. I’m not looking for applause here. It’s just that when I’m in the fast lane of the M25, overtaking a truck at just over 80mph and fully intending to pull into the gap in the centre lane once I’ve passed safely, I really don’t appreciate a donk in his shiny black 4x4 penis extension hurtling up behind me, lights ablaze, and clamping to my bumper. So I put my foot on the brake. And watched the slug back off. Slug and donk were not the terms of endearment I used in the moment. 
I’ve been in Wales for 22 days out of the last 30: pushing ahead with research for Real Port Talbot in an attempt to emerge from a state of controlled panic as the months count down. I think I’ve managed it… or I will have once I’ve written and shaped the 12,000 or so words I need to achie…