Last week I was lying in bed putting in my Waitrose food shopping order (sad I know), Valentine's day was looming and I knew we were going to see Cara Dillon at the Ashcroft arts centre in the evening, so time would be tight for cooking dinner, what should I cook? I don't normally cook, my husband does, but I can. So as I was looking through the Waitrose magazine I noticed a recipe for Sea bream baked with fennel and potato, it looked easy so I decided to put the ingredients in the shopping cart, job done, shopping all sorted.
Now I must just say that over the past few months I have done a few odd things. Forgetting where I've parked the car (quite a frequent thing for me), leaving my keys at the supermarket checkout, looking high and low for a book that I ordered only to realise that it hadn't been delivered yet, are you getting the picture. My best to date is losing my purse only to discover it had been in the freezer overnight.
Okay, so Valentines day arrives. I visit my Mum in her care home, taking with me a heart shaped helium balloon. My Mum won't remember who gave it to her but it gives the people that work there a laugh and the other inmates like it, it gives them all something to talk and laugh about.
I promise this is all going to head back to my food shopping at some point.
I suffer a visitor to the care home who moans non stop every time she visits. One of the moans on this particular day is that they are having fish and chips for dinner, so she asks is the fish real and are the chips frozen. Now what would fish actually be if it wasn't real? I laughed about that with some of the girls that work there, and they chatted about real fish, as in whole fish with heads, tails, and eyes, fish that need gutting and scaling!
This gets me thinking about my Waitrose order and the Sea Bream I have ordered. As I drive home I am thinking dear God don't let it have a head and tail, and especially don't let me have to gut a fish, surely I have just ordered chunks of sea bream.
You can guess what happens, so we will skip to me emptying my Waitrose bags then looking up how to gut a fish on youtube.
These fish don't look at all happy do they, especially the top one.
I gutted the fish, you will be pleased to know there are no pictures. It's funny when a fish actually looks like a fish that it's a very different experience from handling a chunk of fish with no face! I talked to them continuously through the whole process, apologising for my actions, but telling them that it wasn't my fault as I didn't kill them! It makes me think about a time when I used to put flowers in a funeral parlour and continually talked to the dead bodies! I digress.
The fish have amazing eyes and have beautiful coloured skin, just a shame that I felt that they were watching me the whole time with that disgruntled look on their faces.
Lemon and herbs were added to the newly gutted fish, I was getting used to handling their stomachs by this time, still weird though.
Fish all in the oven, I congratulated myself on a not to nice job well done. They lay on a bed of potatoes, fennel and white wine.
Back to sewing quilts for me, whilst listening to the horrendous storm raging outside. Then my husband rings to tell me the good news that he had a hunch to check on the Cara Dillon tickets, and there are no records of us having ordered any, and the concert is all booked!! Another phone call again from my husband gives the joyous news that the train home from work has been cancelled due to the weather!!
Forward again to my husband being home, we are both now past our best and ticked off about the Cara Dillon tickets, I console myself that dinner will be good and I have also made a rhubarb upside down pudding.
Dinner is a disaster, so many bones in the fish makes it almost impossible to eat, plus the very finely sliced potatoes are still not cooked, the fish when you can get a tiny mouthful without bones is however very nice.
Good news though, two people have cancelled their Cara Dillon tickets so we can have them, we abandon the grim dinner, wolf down the delicious rhubarb pudding and head out into the storm.
Cara Dillon, her husband, and the support act are fantastic. Jack Harris the support act tell's us "my cd is £10 and if you buy 10 I will quite happily lick you" this makes me laugh on and off the whole evening. If I had a spare £100, I would let him have it just for brightening my day!
Lastly did you know that when you put a Sea Bream in the oven it goes in as a Sea Bream and comes out as a Piranah! Look at those teeth, they so didn't have them when they went in the oven! Just disgusting!