Yesterday was my day off and I fought the urge to do some work and instead sat down to watch ‘Captain Corelli’s Mandolin‘ which I read a long time ago and enjoyed but when I had seen the DVD couldn’t for the life of me remember the actually story, I could remember the fantastic descriptive writing but other than the odd piece, like the end and how he plays his mandolin, and the firing squad, the actually story alluded me, so I bought the DVD to refresh my memory. You can read my view of the film on my film page if you are interested. I did contemplate watching another film but the doorbell rang with a delivery.
Part of the deleivery was a new book; ‘The Ultimate Book of Fish & Shellfish‘ by Kate Whiteman ISBN 1-84477-612-3, if you enjoy cooking and eating fish then this book is for you, without a doubt it is the most comprehensive fish book I have ever seen while keeping it all firmly grounded. It has everything from how to make fish and chips to how to open a sea urchin; from how to smoke your own kippers to how to make one of the four versions of paella; from how to tell caviar from lump fish roe to how to make any number of choices of starters, soups, light dishes, old favourites, main dishes, in fact just about any dish you might ever want to make with any kind of fish. So if you happen to have a parrot fish, a garfish, or a soft shelled crab, or even some cod, haddock or prawns this is the one book you will find how to prepare and cook them all, with plenty of suggestions for the more common fish which can be used in the less common fish recipes. Although I enjoy cooking I don’t actually own many cook books, I tend to skim through them for ideas and then pass them on; keeping a few old stalwarts for reminders about timings, temperatures and baking recipes; this one however will be going nowhere!
The second film of the day was seen in the early evening, we were going out for dinner and decided to catch a film first, the choice was ‘The Simpson’s’ or ‘Evan Almighty‘ Evan won, harmless enough, wouldn’t rave about it and if it passes you by you wont have missed anything much, but it passed an hour or so pleasantly enough – the highlight God as a waiter wearing the name badge Al Mighty.
If you ever happen to be in the Bothwell area looking for a meal then the ‘Grapevine’ in the main street would be my top recommendation, the food is excellent and very reasonably priced. One half of the menu changes frequently so you are never stuck for a new dish to try, the other half is pretty static, so if you don’t fancy any of the changeable dishes – which never seems to happen – you can always go back to an old favourite. We had chicken liver pate with brioche toast and spiced apricot chutney, and Parma ham with nectarines, ricotta and a balsamic vinegar reduction for starters – mains was lamb with braised red cabbage and crushed potatoes with a red wine sauce, and pork and asparagus with an exquisite lemon and rosemary sauce, the meal was rounded off with cherry crème brule with the thinnest biscotti I think I have ever had. Yet again they didn’t fail to meet up to the expectations they have instilled in us whenever we walk through the door.