A great many of my friends accuse me of being a food snob. And quite likely, I am. I will not touch such things as pot noodle, ketchup, mayonnaise (home made excepted), builder's tea or that nasty pre-sliced bread that always seems so popular. Or margarine. Or caged-hen eggs. Essentially all the things to which an impoverished, student-type ought to defer. The list does go on rather. I hate such things as instant mash. The very idea is, to me, quite abominable. Mashing potatoes is possibly one of the simplest tasks in cookery. Oh dear, the point of this was to talk about something I like. Perhaps I have uncovered the next entry? Right, yes, well.
However none of this apparent snobbery is simply to keep up appearances. Quince could well be having a resurgence, but this doesn't influence me. I love quince because it tastes stunning. And it goes so well with such a lot, not least with cheese. I love runny, heart-attack inducing cheeses on crisp-bread crackers. And prosciutto. All cured meats really. And roasted vegetables. Roast chicken, or goose, or pheasant. I'm afraid this is all going to lack any sort of cohesion. One food will always suggest another. And memory plays such a wonderful role. I used to embarrass my friends terribly when they ever dared come food shopping with me. Waitrose was rather my place of worship for a long time. I was certainly devout. Contrasting the solemnity with which I made Sunday services, the Waitrose ritual was one of excited to-ing and fro-ing in between the aisles. There was always something wonderfully interesting to look at, sourced from somewhere mind-bogglingly exotic. Or so it was for me at least. There is something about fresh, ripe, home-grown, local and tasty ingredients that truly makes me happy. Knowing the meat/dairy/eggs were sourced from happy animals seems to automatically improve their flavour. Is that merely a placebo? I like to think not, although I'm certain various studies have shown no person can ever really tell in blind tests. But then, arguably, is that even the point? The satisfaction of choosing something sustainable and positive over the cheap and negative option is absolutely reward enough. I may have been pounds out of pocket, but I was and remain unperturbed.
The monetary thing has become an issue. I will always, and I mean always, over-spend unnecessarily on food. Today I did start well, I packed my lunch and that was all fine. However I then stopped off at the Boatshed in Cottesloe, to meet a friend. This particular grocer has a reputation for having the most wonderful foods, infamously eschewed by a large number of the locals. For example, they have just started selling Manjimup truffles, something they managed to cultivate after years of trying in the South-West countryside. I love it, and not simply because of the bountiful tasting plates. It was via one of these that I came to taste the Boatshed's chocolate mousse. I had to sit down. On the floor. Such was it's genius. And naturally I've introduced my current wingman to this airy, fluffy, frankly orgasmic delight. And that's what we bought today. For the second time in less than a week.
This is bad not only financially - forget not the turbulent economic times in which we still live, where austerity should be our hallmark philosophy - but it is not at all friendly to my waistline. In London I ate quality not quantity and I walked everywhere. It was certainly cheaper than paying for transport. I also cycled distances too great for walking. I was a bit feeble should the weather have been poor, but in general I would carry on unless the very heaviest of downpours should render me sightless. On the other side of the world, this does not occur. I eat quality and a huge quantity of it. Why? I'm not even hungry. However I cannot sit idly by and allow a sibling to have a larger portion of whatever than myself. I also drive almost everywhere. It's simply the done thing. You can neither survive nor rely on public transport alone, and the distances are far too great to allow for walking. I'm trying to do so more often, simply because I enjoy a good walk. Ah! idea number two from post number five.
Sadly this lacks any succinct, logical thought. I apologise. But perhaps this allows for my genuine like of food to shine through. I do hope so, at least.