Monday, April 23, 2007

By George, dragon anyone?

Obviously as it's St. George's day I should do something suitably English to mark the occasion. We always say that we'll happily drink green beer, wear pints of Guinness felt floppy hats and generally partake in blarney a plenty on St. Patrick's day. As when I say 'we' I mean other people as I am more likely to think how can I incorporate champ into a meal or whip up an Irish stew. We'll happily have haggis piped in and tuck into mashed neeps on Burn's night, we'll plan some suitable Chinese New Year feast but we seem totally perplexed by St. George's day. It seems frowned upon to fly the St. George's flag, we'll make an exception for an important English football match but there's always a slew of stories banning this flag-flying in fear of some sort of incitement to jingoistic nationalism. It's all rather odd!
However today more effort seems to be abound with my favourite event being in honour of good old English humour by an attempt on the Guinness world record of coconut half clip-clopping in a "Monty Python and the Holy Grail" style! I think what particularly delighted me was the instructions to "leave your coconut halves at home as they will be provided for the event!". I believe over five and a half thousand people turned up in Trafalgar Square to smash the record. English surrealism is alive and well.
But what to eat on such occasion? St. George famously slayed dragons, so would you opt for a dragon burger? And if so, where does one get dragon from as St. George obviously did a good job as they seem to have been entirely eradicated. I thought about steak and kidney pie in lieu of a dragon but wasn't really feeling in a pie sort of mood. I pondered an English afternoon tea but was out of cucumber and scones so will save my tiered cake stand for another day. My first English asparagus of the season would be most appropriate but I couldn't lay my hands on any (I believe there's many a spear in Cambridge, but that's a little too far for me to shop) so that treat will have to be for another day.
In the end I plumped for one of my H. Forman's Lobster and Salmon Gourmet Fishcakes that arrived in my Ocado delivery today. The smoked salmon comes from Scotland but is smoked in London and the lobster probably comes from England so it will have to do. And as they're so delicious I don't mind shoehorning one in to celebrate any occasion. This time I only had one and made a little speedy creamy sauce finished with lemon juice and chives which complemented it very nicely. Okay no dragon, but lobster. That's got to be good!

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