Like most people I love the idea of shopping locally. The thing is it has to provide additional benefits other than just a warm fuzzy feeling. I expect good customer service, I like to find products that I can't find in the big box shops, and I don't mind spending a little extra to find something unique.
On one hand, our food culture is thriving like never before. On the other, for or many of us, food is a source of anxiety rather than nourishment and pleasure. It's evolved into a controversial 'thing' to either obsess over or give zero f***s about while stuffing your face and arteries with yet another unhappy meal at the drive-through.
Here are some meal suggestions that you can knock up just from what you'll already have lying around. They're yours for free! All I ask is that if you make one of them, perhaps for your family, you then hold hands and saying "For this, James Moran, we are truly grateful". Perhaps you could refer to me as "the master of our tongues, O mighty Lord of Flavour!".
A well-attended debate at the Soho Literary Festival in London last week raised the motion that so-called "Foodies" have taken all the fun out of eating in restaurants; that a gravy of gravitas had been poured over something that should be one of life's simple pleasures. Gourmet geekery is out of control we heard.
I'm at a party and have ended up talking to gastro-bores. Foodies. I can be a bit foody when the mood takes me, but this conversation, lubricated by alcohol and MasterChef, is getting out of control. Predictably, the group are trying to impress each other with wildly implausible meals - stuff they just "whip up" at home. Yeah right.
After passing down a lovely country lane, we arrived at The Manor at Weston on the Green and I instantly felt pleased I'd made the journey. The Manor is situated through some big iron gates at the end of a gravel driveway, next to plush and green gardens, and we were presented with a wonderfully inviting big country house that is The Manor.