Monday, October 13, 2008


Yes Dr Kish, I’m one of them who (like yourself recently) like to use song titles to head up blog entries ... I’m not sure why exactly, although I’ve got a rough idea, and I know I’m not alone but Doctor, doctor can’t you see I’m (stop quoting song lyrics and get on with it you call? OK then) Doctor - What do you prescribe? Plenty of R&R? (rest & recoup or rock ‘n’ roll? – see I can’t help it) Lucoazde? Prescription drugs? Non prescription drugs? Stop blogging? Or just some nice homemade soup?

Well reading a recent copy of the Observer Food Monthly magazine over the weekend I stumbled over an interesting article on Richard Mabey, the guy who wrote ‘Food For Free’ (that’s a book, not a song in case you were wondering). Never heard of it? Well it was quite a hit when published in1972 (a fine year from my personal experience) and ... well it’s all in the title, isn’t it Doc? So with a credit crunch on and ignoring the weekend headline event (the ‘some guys from somewhere hot might wanna buy lil old Charlton’ story not the ingerland stuff) which I’m avoiding writing about (a) because there’s plenty of other opinions and comments being thrown about and (b) to be honest I’m not sure where I stand on that one yet. I’m sure the title of this blog shows some of my feelings towards modern day football, which I’ve not yet fully explained yet online, but even an old stick in the mud can see why it could be a good thing. Maybe the scare from Pedro45 about beer sales when I’m pushing for Peroni to be made available will influence my final view and maybe nobody will care anyway. Anyway this guy had quite an interesting story as well as a few recipes to save a bob or two. So, with financial doom facing us all and no competitive football for another week and a half I thought I’d take Mr Oliver’s lead. For those that don’t know he’s asking people to teach a healthy home cooked recipe to two friends who in turn show two friends and so on. Like pyramid selling but with a good target for all concerned. Well here’s my contribution to the two people who read this page I share with you the stockpot recipe taken from Mr Mabey. I’m sure he won’t mind and that Jamie would support me in court but just in case I’ve changed a few words – just so the Observer don’t sue my arse for the six quid own – lot of money these days, six quid, unless you want to buy our beloved club.

A stockport – by which I mean a rough and ready ongoing group of northerners – sorry soup, to which new ingredients and liquids are added each day, or as they become available for emergency loan, is one of the greatest contributions you can make to reducing food waste. But mostly it’s an adventure, since you never know exactly how it’s going to perform on any given day.
In my experience almost anything once kicking will make interesting stock if boiled for long enough. More realistically, utilitarian stock can be made from the simple boiling of a chicken carcass, lamb bones or ham hock. Trim off any remaining fat from the bones (ie those still on first division wages), place in a large saucepan with a couple of chopped onions and carrots, and add water to a level of about 10 o 15cm from the bottom of the pan. Don’t attempt to cover the bones with water. Bring to the boil, place the lid of the saucepan on securely and simmer for 90 minutes pressing the bones down into the both as they become loosened from each other. Leave to cool a little, then strain the contents of the pan through a firm sieve into a bowl, pressing as much as you can from the moist residue with a wooden spoon. Leave to become entirely cold then remove as much of the fatty layer, which will have risen to the top.
A pile of remnant vegetables – onions, carrots, nigels, potatoes, celery – will make a stock through the same process.
To thicken the stockpot use chopped potatoes, cooked or raw, carrots, crushed occasionally as the soup simmers, a handful of pearl barley, rice breadcrumbs, porridge oats or lentils.
A team with an accumulating cargo of vegetables and disintegrating meat can become a tad full-bodied. It may need lightening or sharpening. The juice of a lemon will help cut the fattiness. A dash of soy sauce (Mr Z) or dry sherry (please don’t buy that millwall scum) adds depth to the squad. A pinch of chilli powder cures most ills. Keep testing and adding til the blend pleases you!

So there you have it. I could have used loads more football puns but decided if Jamie’s taking this seriously then so should I – I also left most same so you can actually use the recipe – ‘pass it on’ as Mr Oliver emplores us to do. So hopefully one of the two readers of this will know a certain current Charlton employee who I know would love making this – keep tinkering til the blend pleases you anyone? Anyway you’ll all thank me for the cheap grub when it’s two hundred sovs a match to watch our new team of international superstars poncing about in the first division.


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