Music, Mud and Making Do

There are numerous things that get-my-goat, but one that often comes to mind is when someone uses the “I was going to…” tact to make up for the fact that they haven’t done something, somehow feeling that letting their intention be known is equal to having actually done whatever it was that they were going to do but didn’t.

“Oh, it was your birthday last week wasn’t it? I was going to get you a present”

I hate that.

But I’m going to start this entry by apologising to any regular followers for my woefully slack blogging, (I haven’t written anything since early May before I did my Anarchist Cook show at the Brighton Fringe), and now I’m going to do exactly what I’ve just complained about and tell you things I was thinking I could have done.

In my fringe show I cooked a three course meal on hotel equipment, so I thought I’d do a blog of the three recipes I made on stage. If you saw my show, and this is something that would interest you then let me know and I WILL do it, but just now that show feels too long ago to be current. Since I’ll be doing the show again in the Brighton Comedy Fringe in October I WILL do a blog about that then, and I invite anyone to remind me nearer the time.

Last weekend Matthew and I went to Glastonbury Festival. It really is the best festival in the world with a really tangible sense of raw counter-culture and in many of the hidden places, genuine anarchy. I was performing a truncated version of my Anarchist Cook show there and Matt was my guest, and with us we took the intention, and the ingredients, to make a delicious Thai Curry. It was to be made on a Trangia (by far and away the BEST camping cooker) and to be enjoyed by us and marvelled at by our fellow revellers, dissatisfied with their lot as they chomped on Pot Noodles or over-priced festive fare. We were going to cook it, and photograph it, and blog about it. But look, here it comes, another “I was going to” moment, for good as our intensions were circumstance conspired against us. An initial few days of shockingly poor weather which I may have inadvertently brought on myself* was followed by Matt having to return home early when his father was taken ill, and so we never got to cook it. Mind you, we still had some very tasty meals, some of them bought but most of them made. Nothing strikingly innovative but still probably better (and certainly cheaper) than anything for sale on the site.


During one especially fierce downpour we were trapped under my 12 year old Argos gazebo with an extremely talented comedian called Dave Thompson. He’s a very interesting man with lots of amusing anecdotes in his canon, and we enjoyed his company enormously while rustling up something from our limited larder to keep us going until the rain stopped and we could venture out to buy something hot from one of the many stalls on the site. But in the end we were so satisfied with the cold meal that we’d thrown together (both in terms of calorific requirement and palette entertainment) that we didn’t end up buying anything else and while Matt had nothing at all for the rest of the evening, Dave only ate a bag of nachos when he got back to his tent much much later and I attempted to cook a packet of instant noodles at 3:40am after doing the Mavericks late night cabaret, but ended up loosing more than half of them when I tried to drain the water away and, a little drunk, inadvertently poured most of the noodles onto the muddy grass as well. And I wasn’t cooking them because I was hungry. Rather it was more of an instinct thing due to the consumption of what I would describe as “a glut of cocktails”.

Avocados with Cockles

2 perfectly ripe avocados
1 jar pickled cockles
extra virgin rapeseed oil
crushed chilli flakes
the juice of 1 lime
flakey salt
freshly ground black pepper
chopped fresh coriander

Halve the avocados and fill the stone-wells with cockles. Drizzle over rapeseed oil and lime juice. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, crushed chilli and corriander. Very tasty and even more enjoyable if you are backstage at a festival, sipping cider, with the distant sound of live music and the pitter patter of rain as it hits the gazebo under which you are sheltering.

We had a ball of Mozzarella torn up with ours too. Which worked.


*During my show I toasted some pecan nuts on an upturned iron and to crush them I dropped them between the pages of a Gideon Bible, dropped the bible to the floor and stamped on it. Funnily enough, almost immediately after doing it on both the friday and the saturday shows we experienced the most incredible electrical storms. I did the same on sunday, but the sun stayed out. Perhaps my blasphemy was countered by the Christian radiance of Dolly Parton who was on at the same time as me? Or perhaps it was all just coincidence.


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