Monday, November 12, 2012
AMIDST STREAMERS, WHISTLES, BALLOONS AND POPPING CORKS AM I!
It's not only because the start of the "Silly Season" is drawing near - for me there is always a lot going on at this time of the year. Everything commences in early November. It’s been this way since I was born. Unfortunately, the momentum increases each year - the years have gained momentum, that is, not me. I’ve slowed down to a snail’s pace!
Mercurial years travel faster than the speed of light; swifter than a Swift! They’ve accelerated at an unfair rapid rate of knots! The pace allows me no time to catch my breath, let alone put out the garbage! On top of having to accept the transient years’ high velocity, something is missing from my celebratory couple of weeks – the explosive gaiety of Guy Fawkes’ Night! Party-poopers took that celebration away from us years ago!
Purposely, the grandeur of my birthday celebrations is toned down of late. These days I sneak up on birthdays, and then, in silence, I tip-toe past before the day realises what day it is! This trick comes with age; and with age, comes wisdom. Do you recognise the simile? As with “the chicken and the egg” – what comes first – age or wisdom?” Maybe it’s just age alone! Let’s not delve too deeply into that one – moving on!
With another birthday looming (it finished “looming” on Sunday, 11th November…Remembrance Day), I thought this year I’d celebrate it in a style beyond that of years gone by. I believed I’d be the winner of the $100million Oz7; but, once again the clumsy Lotto mob chose the wrong numbers! When will they get it right?
Therefore, I didn’t go crazy on Sunday; but I did feast upon a huge pile of fresh Aussie prawns from the waters of the Great Barrier Reef up Cairns way. Along with crunchy-crusted fresh bread, butter, cider vinegar and a finger bowl, I was in Seventh Heaven!
On the subject of winning huge amounts; it always amazes me when people say: “Oh! That’s too much money for one person!” A Brisbane friend of long-standing declared similar to me the other day as we discussed said Lotto. I couldn’t help but correct her, as that is not my belief, in any way; it never has been! She’d quickly change her tune if I won an enormous amount!
Every one of my best friends would benefit from my good fortune; as would some relatives (the operative word being "some"...there are some I'd probably bypass!). The majority of my close relatives are worthy recipients, and they, the majority, would be well-taken care of; they’d be set for the rest of their lives. Of course, it’d be up to them not to squander the “golden egg”; but, once theirs, they could do with it whatever they wished; but I have faith in their astute judgment and commonsense. After all, they accept me for who I am; making their expert, impeccable judgment undeniable!
There are so many charities and good causes, such as Cancer and Alzheimer’s research, to name but two of numerous others, that’d be beneficiaries of my good luck. I’d revel in the enjoyment of spreading my triumphant windfall, my lucky break, amongst family, friends and good causes. I’d feel no guilt whatsoever in savouring such selfish fun, expecting and wanting nothing in return; already I would have received more than enough! So, you see, $100million wouldn’t be too much for this one person. Selfishly I’d accept my winnings; I’d bask and wallow in guiltless pleasure!
The best job in the world is philanthropy. I’d love to be able to apply for, and get the job! Now, please excuse me - I need to blow up balloons, string streamers and pop a cork - it’s time to party – with or without Lotto’s assistance!
Golden Eggs: Peel 6 hard-boiled eggs. Heat 2tbs veg oil over med-heat; cook 1 thinly-sliced brown onion until golden; add 2 finely-chopped tomatoes, 12 fresh curry leaves, 2tsp mustard seeds and 1tsp turmeric; cook, stirring, 2mins. Add 400ml can coconut cream; simmer 10mins; add eggs; cook 1min.
Golden Egg Casserole: Melt 2tbs butter in large pan over med-high heat; add 1c sliced mushrooms and 1 medium green capsicum, chopped; sauté 8mins; remove from heat. Whisk 10 eggs with 1/2c plain flour, 1tsp baking powder, 1/4tsp salt; stir in mushroom mix, 455g cottage cheese, 2c shredded cheddar, 240g cooked pork sausage mince, 6 cooked, crumbled bacon rashers and 60g sliced, drained black olives. Pour into greased oven dish; bake at 200C, 15mins; reduce heat to 175C; bake 15-20mins until set.
Fried Devilled Eggs: Slice 12 hard-boiled eggs in half, lengthwise. Remove yolks to bowl; add 1/4c mayo, 1tbs Dijon mustard, 1tsp lemon zest, 1tbs chopped chives, dash hot sauce, salt and pepper; mash; adjust seasonings. Fill egg whites with this mixture. Heat peanut oil to 175C. Dip eggs into plain flower; then into beaten raw eggs; then in Panko breadcrumbs; gently put eggs into hot oil; fry until golden.
Potato Cakes with Chilli Eggs: Coarsely-grate 550g peeled potatoes; squeeze out as much liquid as possible; set aside on tea towel; grate 1 onion and treat similarly. Heat 2tbs olive oil in large non-stick pan; cook onions, 5mins; stir in potato; mix; fry in an even layer, 15-20mins, until golden underneath. Slide pan under heated grill; cook 5-7mins until golden. Make four indentations on top with spoon; crack an egg into each dip; season; scatter over finely-chopped red chilli, or pinch of dried chilli. Cover; place on hob; cook 4-5mins, depending on how you like your eggs cooked; serve from pan with crusty bread.