Sunday, 8 February 2009

Snow damage

It's weighty stuff, snow. Look what it's done to the roof of the old cow pen. And there was me thinking I'd done worrying about roofs for a few years.
Anyway, I'm too busy laughing at a letter in this Saturday's Guardian Weekend to fret.
To quote: "It's so annoying. There is Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall with a lovely recipe for pheasant and bean soup (Slurp Happy, 31 January), and I've just used up all the leftover pheasant to feed the estate workers and have nothing but swan on my hands".
I'm not going to get all snotty of Tunbridge Wells about this, but it was a wonderful illustration of different worlds on one tiny island. Pheasant is cheap, local, and plentiful to many people living in the country, and I don't remember letters of disapproval heading to the paper from them when sushi ingredients, passion fruit or even the ubiquitous but far flung banana appear on the recipe pages, all of which are no doubt regular must-haves for someone.
I've just carved the breasts and legs off two braces of pheasant and jammed them in a casserole with leek, celery, butternut squash, carrot, cider and thyme. The carcases are steaming in the stockpot for soup. And there isn't an estate worker in sight, never mind a swan. Not that I could tell if there was one floundering about in this weather.


Lindsay said...

I wold gladly be an estate worker just to earn your delicious sounding pheasant casserole.

menopausaloldbag (MOB) said...

God that sounds wonderful. Here I am with my Lidl economy range boil in the bag indescribable mush with a side of battered onions rings for lunch! Oh how the other half live!

Scriptor Senex said...

That looks to have had a pretty disasterous effect on the olf cow pen. Good job it was not occupied by old cows.

Yorkshire Pudding said...

Oh good Lord, were there any old cows in the old cow pen when the roof collapsed? Hope the young cow pen roof was okay.

garfer said...

That was obviously the Queen. She's allowed to eat swans.

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Haha! Only in Britain!

Sorry about that roof, though.

tim relf said...

I'm presuming (hoping!) no livestock were inside at the time!

Mopsa said...

Lindsay - it was yummy even if I say so myself!

MOB - I SO don't believe you!

SS - no old cows or young 'uns.

YP, the young cow pen (and YES, there is one) was re-roofed by us 3 years ago - a lovely corrugated tin job that drips condensation onto the stuff below.

Garfer - but do you think she actually does that?

Welshcakes - always happy to cause a chuckle.

Tim - not unless you include the odd rodent or snail.

paula said...

for a moment I thought it was goose-plucking-shed - but luckily not - relieved to read on and hear that pheasant (and most probably some true exotic, not just the common-or-garden royal swan) could find its way into your tum!.

Anonymous said...

Our (very) local supermarket used to sell pheasant, guinea fowl, quail etc....then branched out into fresh offal. Now we regularly get hearts (ox, lamb etc), pigs' trotters, ox tongue - & of course, raw fresh marrowbones & chicken carcases for stock (& only pennies).

The latest item on CK's menu - courtesy of the 'Victorian Farm' series - is half a pig's head for a couple of quid.

Said dish is already proving very popular & it's great that there's nothing left of this supermarket's butchered pigs, other than the 'oink'; & that locals are embracing the credit crunch with a return to traditional values, wasting nothing - & revisiting delicious & nutritious dishes as a result.

Meanwhile what a shocker for your cow shed - I truly feared for our (new) haybarn roof at one point owing to the sheer weight of snow; thankfully (for now at least) it's still intact. I'm going to post some photos over the next few days of my snowy purgatory, you might be sympathetically interested! Sadly I've been too busy to get any words written on the subject, any sooner.

I only hope that's winter, done & dusted: the frogs are noisly spawning in the pond & buds are out on the bushes with flowers blooming amongst the trees in our little orchard. Another cold spell, & I worry it'll knock 'em all for six....

Mopsa said...

LFD - no signs of buds in the orchard here yet... or not yesterday anyway - things move so fast perhaps something is busting out and I haven't noticed.