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Parcel delivery in our area has reached the bottom of the subcontracting chain, again. Yodel, of the dented liveried vans and creatively delivering drivers (parcels ended up crushed under shed doors, in various bins, on the doorstep under a bin, etc.) are no longer delivering in this area. Instead we have Hermes, self-employed local drivers in their own cars with a dispatch unit and an impossibly overstuffed delivery schedule, knocking and dashing from address to address, having been optimised a step too far to fit in the actual delivery part of the job. So... I might get the stuff I ordered from Amazon Marketplace, or I might not. There are no depots, and you can only rearrange if the courier leaves their personal mobile number on the card (hahaha).

I cooked a nice meal last night, so I'm recording it. Lamb Tagine with pomegranate. Cut the lamb neck fillet into large pieces, and set to marinade in about 500ml of spiced sweetened grape pulp (this was end of life grapes from my garden which I'd seeded and cooked -- you could probably get something similar by boiling up a handful of shop-bought grapes with brown sugar, spices and a dash of balsamic and letting it chill for 24 hours) at room temperature for at least an hour. Soften and slightly brown sliced onions in olive oil with a little chopped chilli and red peppers, toss in some chopped cherry tomatoes, then add strained chick peas (retain the water) mix, and put in the tagine, arrange the lamb chunks on top (retain the bulk of the marinade), scatter with about a third of the pomegranate seeds (you need one small pomegranate) pop the lid on and put it in the over fairly hot for a quarter hour, then cooler for a half hour, then take the lid off and bang up the heat for the final ten mins to reduce the juice and brown the meat. Take the marinade remnant and boil up on the stovetop with the starchy chick pea water to a thick brown sauce consistency (add a good splash of dark soy sauce to brown it and shift the flavour to savoury). Set to cool (it'll thicken up as it cools). Serve with griddled sliced aubergine, the remainder of the pomegranate seeds, and with a good dollop of the grape sauce on the side.

The last of Halloween has run into the beginning of Christmas with the inevitable result of Christmas Owls. Also, one of my gardening catalogues turned up with what is apparently an ostentatious austerity Christmas tree (see below) in its pages. You can't buy it (sigh of relief), it's a serving suggestion, however it may have set the tone for Christmas 2013.

skully brownie austerity christmas
burrowing owls of primark leaves and the sky

Comments

( 2 worms — Feed the birds )
cleanskies
16th Nov, 2013 09:59 (UTC)
in the end and at the very last minute
The courier turned up at about 1pm in a frantic hurry and called me love in a tone that knew it might not be appropriate but was too stressed/hurried to care.

I can has home fermenting, so yeah.
mzdt
17th Nov, 2013 21:34 (UTC)
Ah, Hermes, employing the same 'business model' as Parcel2Go and Yodel, all of whom have displayed the care & attention of a mass murderer on crack to ebay purchases in the past.

You must have another reader at my work - some wag put 'pomegranate' on my shopping list wipeboard, but our usual suppliers can't help
( 2 worms — Feed the birds )