What Have The Americans Ever Done For Us? Hot Dogs, Buddy, Fully Loaded.

There’s a scene in ‘Monty Python’s Life of Brian’ where a squad of Israelite rebels, led by John Cleese & Co, are discussing ‘what have the Romans done for us?’ The debate centres around whether they should pursue a terrorist course of action, and everyone gets a bit stressed as they start to realise the Roman’s have actually done quite a lot….

‘…All right… all right… but apart from better sanitation and medicine and education and irrigation and public health and roads and a freshwater system and baths and public order… what have the Romans done for us?’

Now fast forward a few thousand years.

Here we are, in the glorious 21st century. For Rome, read Amercia. Now I haven’t spent too much time or effort considering the socio-economic influence of America on the planet. And I’m not going to start now. What I will do is consider the culinary influence of America.

And they have done some seriously important things for us. Fully Loaded Hot Dogs are a case in point.

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Happiness Salad

Happiness Salad. (There’s an oxymoron right there). I decided I had to create a salad. Salads mean goodness. Salads mean piousness. Salads are eaten by people who want to live for many years, so they can do lots of things.

Salads also mean boring. So I turbocharged mine. There are so many items in this Happiness Salad, it needs its own library to store the ingredients list.

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Boozy Pulled Beef Burgers

I just bought some still cider to marinate some ribs in. But then I decided to hell with that, the ribs can marinate themselves, I will marinate myself with the cider.

But then I noticed something. The back of the bottle detailed the recommended daily alcohol intake for a man. 3-4 units. Whats that then, 3 to 4 bottles of wine? A pint of vodka maybe? My eye was drawn to the right of this information; a small picture of a bottle with a 3 in it. The bottle of cider I was holding contained 3 units of alcohol.

So basically I could drink that bottle of cider, not even a pint, and according to government scientists, that’s would be it. No more. Risk of death or liver damage or some horrendous mental breakdown would follow if I cracked open another.

Well come off it. They don’t make bottles of cider on the presumption that you are going to buy four in a pack and then drink one. There is a disconnect between what we see and what we are told. Maybe its the Scientologists trying to mess with our minds. Or maybe its the people who run the country being as stupid as we hope they aren’t.

Anywho this caused a small flurry of debate. Secretly everyone is sloshed. The wife pointed out a friend who posted a picture of a gin and tonic cupcake. A new government survey claims that everyone who is over 40 drinks 3 bottles of wine a day and will be dead by the time they retire. So good, that means in 20 year time we won’t have to worry about an ageing population.

It won’t be a problem for me though. I incorporate alcohol into many recipes. Its helping me develop a super-enhanced tolerance which will actually prolong my lifespan.

Here’s a classic example. These Pulled Beef Burgers contain Guinness, red wine and Jack Daniels. But fear not, the alcohol boils off so its absolutely not a problem to stick four, i mean one, bottle of cider down your neck while you stuff them.

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Beef Cheek Chilli with Essential Sides

First some things I noticed this week:

  1. Twitter is irritating. For every person that starts following you, 2 stop following you. Actually I think that every time I write a rude word, or controversial statement, like ‘Americans are crap at cricket’ then I lose loads of followers (-1)
  2. The opinion poll industry is a load of crap too (-1), in my opinion. We just had an election and all the polls said it was a neck-and-neck race. But it wasn’t – the Tories (right wing) won it by a mile and Labour (left wing) ended up looking a bit silly (-2)
  3. I am stupid. I have been haranguing my internet provider for the last week telling them their service is shit (-2). After ranting on the phone for hours over several days I finally booked an engineer. Then I checked the back of the modem, tightened the cable and now everything is fine

These are my top three observations of the week and I just realised they all related to communications, media, online; i.e. irrelevant twaddle and no one cares.

What people do care about is food:

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Beef Hotpot

First a joke.

A woman walks into a bar and asks for a double entendre, so the barman gave her one.

Next an observation. It’s the General Election in the UK next week. The General Election is like voting for a new President in the US, except the difference is that no one cares.

Now a dilemma. After much research I’ve realised I don’t need iCloud. I have 7,500 photographs and I just loaded all of them into iCloud. But they are nearly all pictures of me making food. That’s the problem with digital photography and wine. You end up just taking hundreds of pictures of a bowl of chilli which turn out all to look not quite right. I don’t need to keep them all but I cannot quite bring myself to delete them. I mean I could just leave them on the laptop but I…well I’m conflicted about the whole thing. I am starting to think that the ‘Cloud’ is a big red herring, it isn’t the future…maybe.

Finally a recipe.  A nice, simple, straightforward hotpot.

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