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Chris Evans | 10:07 UK time, Thursday, 14 December 2006

So yesterday, I took a phone call from a lady called JANET.


It’s a funny name JANET, say it to yourself a few times, look at it. It’s a weird one, nothing wrong with it and if your name’s JANET then good for you but it sort of doesn’t work.

It’s the ..et bit. JAN is cool but there’s no need for the et.

It’s like CHRIS, very simple, light. Why do we need the …topher ? ..

Topher, what the heck is topher ? I think someone was having a right laugh.

Anyway the reason Janet called was…

…she is the home economist for James Martin on Saturday Kitchen. She was calling to go through the recipe that I am foolishly going to attempt to cook live on television this Saturday morning.

She was lovely. We were talking for at least ten minutes before we even got onto the subject of food. She is one of those people whose energy, enthusiasm, zest and personality just jump out of the phone at you. I can’t wait to meet her. I’m trying to imagine what she looks like. I’m guessing she’s quite small, with a very pragmatic air about her but with that intriguing mystery that leaves you guessing as to what really gets her to tick.

Her job is to make people that cook on television look like they know what they’re doing. She’s got her hands full with me!

Home economists are worth their weight in gold. A good home economist can be the making or breaking of a television chef. I’ve heard stories chefs coming to blows over the possession of such beings.

Janet has to check the recipe with me so she can go out, buy all the ingredients and then check the recipe works.


Recipes, real bonafide recipes, the ones you get in cook books from famous chefs, the ones that you’ve seen prepared thousands of times on television, the ones that look great in the photographs, often DO NOT WORK.

When she told me this, I was gob smacked.

“Oh yes” she said. “A lot of famous chefs never test their recipes. It goes on all the time. Nine out of ten recipes we cook on Saturday Kitchen have to be modified for us to make them work. Because we prepare everything live there’s no place to hide.”

She then reeled off the lists of the chefs that do test the recipes and do not test the recipes. To go any further would be indiscreet, so far as to say if you any of Gordon Ramsay’s books you should be OK.

After more culinary gossiping, we finally got onto the subject of what the Evans boy is going to cook up or cock up this Saturday hence.

And guess what?

We had to modify it. See if it works by tuning in 10am BBC 1 two days from now.

During our conversation, we started to exchange the holy grail of cooking… TIPS AND TWISTS.

We both agreed that this was the most exciting aspect of any cooking experience. Learning a golden nugget of information that can ease a thousand worries and save a million dinners.

Tell us your tips and I might mention the best on the telly. This is just a lame excuse for me to nick your knowledge for my own selfish gain.




  1. At 10:29 AM on 14 Dec 2006, caroline wrote:

    Dear Chaps and Chapettes and the lovely Chris and the A team

    Well, well, well, my humble profession is recognised!
    I'm truly shocked! I'm very proud!
    I am so pleased Janet made an impression on you, as I would hope all Home Economists would do!
    A lot of Home Economists are also "Development Girls" and we can get a Christmas party started... Myself and collegues love "Relight my fire"


    Caroline xx

  2. At 10:32 AM on 14 Dec 2006, Cheryl wrote:

    To all Rocky Horror devoteeees:

    Damn It, Janet !

    x x

  3. At 10:32 AM on 14 Dec 2006, Dissing Dave wrote:

    Morning Chris, bloggers & lurkers

    Damnit Janet! from the Rocky Horror Show, yes I know you dont like it Chris. but Topher, come on That 70's show Topher Grace where the hell did hid his Chris go?

    A good chef doesn't work from a recipe, he/she adapts, evolves, improves, experiments, in search of perfection. Isn't that what Heston Blumenthal is all about. Inspiration is the key!
    Sure if he had served me up his Spag Bol Log I would have been asking for the rest of the steaming bowl, but I appreciate his quest for the definitive zenith of the genre.

    That is the difference between a chef and a cook, a painter and an artist, a dancer and a prima ballerina. The search for the ultimate in the field.

    But that drive is also the inspiration for those less talented to have a go at replicating in their own way.

    Chris I will give up my Saturday morning Soccer AM on Murdoch Sports 1 to watch your performance.

    Good luck and best wishes to you.

    DD out

  4. At 10:32 AM on 14 Dec 2006, Matt from Rudgwick wrote:


    And a very good Monty to you.

    This morning feels truly like Christmas has begun. I know we’ve been saying that for a few days now, but I have this afternoon off to make a dent in the shopping (well, to get my wife something, she’s done the rest) and tomorrow off to return to the gym after my flirtation with the bugs and scour the recipe books while watching A Nightmare Before Christmas and The Muppet Christmas Carol. One bonus of being ‘ill’ (man-ill, if you like) is that I have had the best part of a week off the sauce. That can’t be a bad thing ahead of the forthcoming booze-a-thon.

    My sole objective during this festive period is to rebuild all off the bridges that I have, not burned, but let fall into a state of disrepair during the past few months.

    Since starting the year jobless and going on to land a good, but stressful role with oodles of travelling and poor office conditions, to being reposted to my lovely, multi-windowed, spacious office nearer home, through the periods of insomnia, I have, knowingly or otherwise, been an anti-social git. I know it, and yet I have let time roll by feeling sorry for myself.

    I’m starting at my Dad’s on Sunday and I shall make a concerted effort to see everyone who matters to me over the next couple of weeks.

    I promise.

    May your Thirsty Thursday be quenched with love and festive spirit.

    Peace all.

    PS Christmas Crackers – Little Drummer Boy, Bing & Dave – Blue Christmas, The King.

    PPS Pencey Prep

    PPPS We’re going to need a bigger boat

  5. At 10:34 AM on 14 Dec 2006, Tracey Bradley wrote:

    Pork Pork Pork chops, you know you cook the stuff under the grill or in the oven and it comes out dry and well yuck. Usually what i do is pour apple juice over them, chuck them in oven and they come out tender and melt in the mouth yum.

    Pastas and rice, instead of cooking for the full 10minutes or however long it takes over the heat. I bring to the boil and turn it off, put lid on and keep an eye on it, drain when its the way you like it.

    Gordon Ramsey r0x0rz :P

    Hope all goes well for you on the show, shall tune in.

    Tracey xoxox

  6. At 10:49 AM on 14 Dec 2006, Emma wrote:



    I see what you mean!

    It's like jon, but what's the athan for?


    and remember it's easier to roll dough between to sheets of cling film than using flour!

  7. At 10:53 AM on 14 Dec 2006, anna wrote:

    Horaah, Chris you have settled my culinary doubts. There are a couple of receipes i have tried out of one particular cook book and ended up having to modify dramatically - it took me 4 modifications on one particular dish. Now that was a dissapointing dinner party, if it hadnt been for the copious amounts of rioja and a generous portion of 70% chocolate, i am sure my friends would have disowned me then and there.

    I dont think i have looked forward to an SK this much for yonks..... now there is a cracking word.

    Yonks - I think i am going to make that my word of the day. Blimey, havent had a word of the day for yonks.

    have a nice day all


  8. At 10:56 AM on 14 Dec 2006, Em M wrote:

    Good morning all,

    I'm a bit hung over and tired so talk quietly please!

    When i roast a chicken I always shover an onion and a clove of garlic up its bottom, and then I put some water in the roasting tin and creat a little stand for the chicken from celery and a couple of carrots so its not sitting in the water.
    I cover the chicken with several knobs of butter, season, and then cover with foil (which I remove for the last half hour of cooking). If the water evaporates I add a little more. That way you can use the liquid to make the most delicious gravy.

    Em xx

  9. At 10:57 AM on 14 Dec 2006, Dan the man in Belfast wrote:

    The only thing I've come across is the tip on not to wash mushrooms - no matter how dirty they look, because they have tend to be sponges and will soak up any moisture you put near them.
    Instead, remove any compost or other adhering matter by brushing them thoroughly; this way they won't become slimy on the palette when cooked - unless that's your preference, of course.

    (You probably knew this anyway!)

  10. At 11:04 AM on 14 Dec 2006, Oliver Whitby wrote:

    Chris (topher),

    What is the point of that 'topher' bit? A very good point and not something that I'd ever spent my time thinking about!

    Looking forward to your escapades on SK this weekend. You can't beat a cooking hint, tip or cheat. They're the best!

    All I can really offer is that when cooking a tomato based pasta sauce, a dash of good old tomato ketchup towards the end of cooking always helps out!

    Good luck with SK.

    Oli x

  11. At 11:05 AM on 14 Dec 2006, Gloria wrote:

    Nicked one of my mates' ideas for pork chops, feel free!
    Coat chops first in beaten egg, then in dry stuffing mix and pop under the grill for however long you like them.
    Infinite stuffing combos now means you can vary the flavour and they come out moist and tasty.

    I always steam my vegetables, never put them in water!

    all the best, will be watching Saturday...

  12. At 11:05 AM on 14 Dec 2006, Christiaan wrote:

    Hi Chris,

    Looking forward to seeing how things go on Saturday. Isn't being nervous and excited about something like that just fantastic. It gives you energy and makes you feel alive.

    I don't have many tips, but here's one: for tasty potato skins on your baked potatoes, remove them from the oven 20 mins before cooked, drizzle some olive oil over them and a little salt, then return for last 20 mins.

  13. At 11:18 AM on 14 Dec 2006, Hazel Love wrote:

    I think you should get an apron made that says 'CHRIS THE COOK'. I wonder if you'd have time to get it done before Saturday...?

    I'm not surprised they have to modify recipes. They always have to use masses of stuff out of the store cupboard on Ready Steady Cook! The only recipes I've ever used from there are the ones the chefs knock up at the end in ten minutes...and even then they usually take me about twenty five minutes!

    TODAYS TIP: Wash up as you go along!!!!!!

    Names. I think it's a shame that lots of children being Christened/named these days are being called by the shortened version of their names. Ben, for Benjamin, Kate, for Catherine for instance. I always feel that it is quite indulgent of parents to do this, and that it should be left up to the child to choose what they want to be called. If Janet prefers to be called Janet then good, but if she wants to shorten it to Jan, that's cool too!

    Words. If you say most words over and over, they lose their sense of meaning...but how about some words that look like they sound?

    Laugh...always looks like a happy word to me!

    Bons mots

  14. At 11:32 AM on 14 Dec 2006, Kato wrote:

    good morning all - tips for cooking:
    " when a receipe says add wine, never ask 'to what?"

  15. At 11:34 AM on 14 Dec 2006, jimmy wrote:

    dear chris.
    first time ive been able to blog in awhile. my mums
    name is janet. it is wierd i agree. i'll tell her as such. im sure she'll agree with the both of us.


  16. At 11:37 AM on 14 Dec 2006, Prof Plum wrote:

    Always add butter to baked beans.
    Add chives to tinned tomato soup.

    For pefect mash. After mashing add butter and milk and beat with a wooden spoon until white and fluffy.

  17. At 11:44 AM on 14 Dec 2006, Dr Joseph McCrumble wrote:

    Morning Chris et al

    Sounds like you are smitten, CHRIS. I do hope you get on well when the two of you finally meet. JANET and CHRIS sounds like a lovely couple, don't you think?

    By the way - Moose pointed this out yesterday, and I can confirm that 'Fox the Fox' last night featured a question from someone that had a name very similar to 'MooseMcCrumblePlum'

    There is no way that you could have accepted this as a real name. What I suspect, and you may like to confess now to save any later embarassment, is that you made the name up yourself because you either

    1) forgot the feature until the last minute and made up the question yourself

    2) you lost the name of the person who asked the question.

    Am I correct in my interpretation?


    J McC

    P.S. The book-of-the-blog has been spotted on a real bookshelf in a real bookshop! The photographic evidence of this momentus event is on my blog.

  18. At 11:44 AM on 14 Dec 2006, Kev wrote:


    Hmmm...You indeed have a point Chris.

    Good luck on Saturday.

    Kev-out x

  19. At 11:51 AM on 14 Dec 2006, Dickie Drain wrote:

    Sky+ set already for 10am....just in case. Office party Friday.
    Cant wait Chris...hope you sleep well on Friday night. I know your great live, but cooking live on TV!! Balls as big as space hoppers.
    Good luck sir.....ask James how he does his Yorkshire puds and then say "I think i have you beat James. I use 3 eggs, three egg whites, a good dose of sifted plain flour. half a pint of ale milk and double cream then its shoved into a really hot oven"

  20. At 11:58 AM on 14 Dec 2006, DOGWITHNOBRAIN wrote:


    I seen the name helenor the other day! Which is the same. Is my name (yes, alas, I'm not really called Dogwith) with or, added on the end.

    Names should be short and sweet, like recipes.

    My daughter is well into her cooking right now. Who needs receipes with Toolibelle about. (that's not her name either, but I can't announce it in case Teacher from Hell is here too and recognises me). She cooks for the folk at my work,and so far they've had her truffles A1+++, a sponge cake A1++++. Mars Bar Crispy Cakes. exceptional, and Shortbread. WOnderful thing is that she doesn't use books, she just throws everything in. Is excellent. Maybe she should go on Saturday kitchen with you Christof??


  21. At 12:11 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Jim wrote:

    Cooking is like flat packed furniture.
    Read the instructions and you will be ok or don't and then wonder why you have 325g of flour and 4 eggs left. (and a flat cake to boot)
    Good luck to you fella.

  22. At 12:13 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Snuff wrote:

    Hi chris
    If you've lots of Garlic to peel. soak it in warm water and the skin just lifts off and doesn't fly all over the place. Double saving!
    And the same thing with shallots!!

  23. At 12:19 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Catherine wrote:

    Hi Chris
    I'm definitely tuning in to watch you on Saturday, can't wait - I bet you're a brilliant cook.
    I've got a tip for you - to stop raisins sinking to the bottom of a fruit cake roll them in flour before mixing them into the mixture - it works!
    Best of luck for Saturday!

  24. At 12:24 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Tracey-Ann wrote:

    Good Morning Christopher, Good Morning Friends :)

    I must admit I’m quite picky about my name. I will not answer to "Trace" under any circumstance (except my Nan !!!) as I am snob !! I will allow Tracey, but I was Christened Tracey-Ann and as such that is the name I use.

    My daughter, when she finally comes home from China, is to be called Bo. There were a few reasons for this but the main ones being, Bo means precious in Chinese and to me she will be the most precious thing in the world. The other reason I liked it so much was because it can’t really be shortened. Although its already being lengthened as she is constantly referred to as "Baby Bo" by family and friends.

    I hated my name when I was younger as all of a sudden there were "Tracey's" everywhere and it became a very common name. I like the fact I am a bit different and hyphenated.

    Joannie - I am so sorry I haven’t replied to your E mails. Thank you so much for your kind words, support and virtual hugs.

    Everyone who has sent me a message or left a comment recently for me - I really DO appreciate it - I just haven`t been up to doing too much recently. I`m sorry.

    Back to the Doctors later today for the next round. Fun Fun Fun !!!

    Love To All... I miss being here so much !

    All my love as always

    Tracey-Ann x x x

  25. At 12:24 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Val wrote:

    I shall have to get my granddaughter to set the video for SK as we will singing Carols at Sainsburys (other supermarkets are available!!) and I don't want to miss it.


  26. At 12:25 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Scouse Dave wrote:

    Sal - ly
    Re - bec - ca
    Jon - ny
    Nige - l

    Scousers shorten most names anyway. It seems you think we are correct in this assertion...


  27. At 12:26 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Jennie (from the blog) wrote:

    I work with a Janet (for a bit longer at least) and she is great - but our colleagues get confused and call her Jenet - far too confusing for them.

    Thank you all for your advice yesterday - I shall indeed leave it til after Christmas. Mainly because my mother said so - and she is a wise woman! (and probably scared that I will be dropping round for some of her stew every day!)

    A bit random but I found out my best friend has also just handed his notice in and when I spoke to him this morning he was sprawled on the sofa at home watching the ashes. Lucky chap!

    anyway - happy days everyone - I'm off to have Marco Pierre White cook me lunch! (Taking advantage of all the invites before I depart)

    Love Jennie

  28. At 12:30 PM on 14 Dec 2006, kim hunt wrote:

    I like my name ***Kim*** not Kimberley - just Kim. It's like me - short and to the point and a little bit naughty (well a lot naughty - he he).

  29. At 12:46 PM on 14 Dec 2006, jillygoat wrote:

    G'day all - sorry I'm late for cookery class!!

    The only tip I've got is to mash potato using first butter, then a bit of milk, and finally add an egg and then whisk it with a fork - it's deeeevine!

    I've set my Sky+ for Saturday as well - it's 'im indoors' work 'do' on Friday and while I'll be completely sober (I'm driving), no doubt he'll be in a delicate state and need tending to Sat morning leaving me no chance to sit and watch CLP at work.

    Please give us bloggers a sign Chris - say 'mange tout, mange tout' and we'll know you're thinking of us!!!!

    By the way, despite successfully completing my three month probationary period, the powers that be have told me that they can't afford to pay me the extra £2.5k as stated in my contract - can they do that? Does anybody know where I stand? I'm not a greedy person at all, and I've worked at places before just because I've enjoyed it there, despite crap pay, but they're going back on something they've said and it seems unfair to me - ooh, I hate unfairness.

    Any advice for me, bloggers?

    jillygoat xx

  30. At 12:59 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Anna Log wrote:

    Hey Dr JMcC - Great news about the BOTB in a real book shop. Have you considered giving Dr Booth a pay rise for his marketing prowess? I'm sure he deserves it.

    I didn't hear the last half of the show last night but perhaps Chris was practising names for his Saturday recipe idea - I reckon a PlumMooseMcCrumble sounds delicious ...

    Best cooking tip - Don't! Eat out or order a takeaway! I can do this though .... Cut medium sized spuds into 6-8 wedges lengthways, put into a plastic bag with a small amount of oil, pinch of salt and some dried parsley (other herbs are available) and shake vigorously to coat the wedges. Place wedges (minus plastic bag, obiously) on a baking tray and cook in oven for 30 minutes or so, turning occasionally. Yummy!

  31. At 01:06 PM on 14 Dec 2006, TheBigUn wrote:

    Afternoon bloggers and schloggers,

    Janet………that is my big sisters name! And let me tell you no messes with Janet! ;-) OK so she really is only known as Jan and she is an angel, a proper big sister :-)

    Thanks to the internt I have foud this as the meaning and origin of Jnaet.

    Janet, Jane, Jayne, Janet Name Meaning: Gift from God ...Origin: Hebrew

    I do think names are important and parents (I know we did) should take time to think about what they are doing to kids when the select a name for life. Take my (No please) children Adam, Georgina and Emma we thought long and hard before choosing the names and even thinking of what they would be shortened to. I am afraid that we could not have seen the introduction of the text message…..so now we have and Adz, Geo and Em!

    Top Tip: If you see me in the kitchen is order a take away ;-)

    10am Saturday see you there (so to speak) ;-)

    Regards to you all,


    P.S. I thought you may like this one ;-)

    A little girl walks in to the lounge one Sunday morning while her Dad is reading the paper.
    "Where does poo come from?" she asks.
    The father feeling a little perturbed that his 5 year old daughter is already asking difficult questions thinks for a moment and says:
    "Well you know we just ate breakfast?"
    "Yes," answers the girl.
    "Well the food goes into our tummies and our bodies take out all the good stuff, and then whatever is left over comes out of our bums when we go to the toilet, and that is poo."
    The little girl looks shocked, and stares, at him with watery eyes in stunned silence for a few seconds and asks:

    "And Piglet and Tigger?"

  32. At 01:07 PM on 14 Dec 2006, alan b wrote:

    To win over your loved one your best efforts should be?
    1) prepared diligantly.
    2) cooked with skill and care.
    3) Presented with love and attention.
    4) 'O' stuff all that rubbish go the chippy

  33. At 01:13 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Parker wrote:

    If we don't have the end bits on names where would that leave guys with the name Richard? They can't all be Rich, cause some of them must be poor and that would get confusing, and what about Stephen? Would they all be Steps?
    Howards would all be How, Patricks would all be Pats. Helen would all be Hell, James would be Jam, Cynthia would be Cyn, Amy would just be A, etc, etc

  34. At 01:17 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Steevie fae Dundee + Glas wrote:


    (Amended, slightly more detailed version of earlier post which got tacked on to yesterday's blog)

    A quick one today with a Christmas(ish) theme which those of you south of the border wouldn't normally see but courtesty of youtube, you can. (I only cottoned on at the weekend that you don't have to subscribe to https://www.youtube.com to be able to view things, I'd never tried it). There is an advert running in Scotland only which has taken the Snowman cartoon and changed it (with permission of course) and there are links all over the place to view it (on newspaper websites etc). A few folk I know who heard it running in the background assumed it was a trailer for C4's Christmas schedule until they realised they were watching STV and then caught the tail end of the changed words. I've not managed to catch it yet on TV so went to youtube for a look. It is an absolute HOOT. It took me four viewings before I noticed Nessie. I did recognise the Falkirk Wheel at the start, the Forth Car & rail bridges, the Bank of Scotland building in Edinburgh followed by the Castle and the "ending" takes place in George Square in Glasgow). To view it, just search for Irn Bru (with a space between the words) and the snowman one will be listed.

    Of course it has come in for criticism, it is apparently "irresponsible" for using a children's fave character to advertise a sugary drink. Blah blah blah (etc). Full story at


    I heard the other day that the Irn Bru cuckoo got beaten up at a recent Personal Appearance to open somewhere. Apparently/allegedly "they" got tanked-up on the given-out freebie IrnBru-32 (Red-Bull type drink) and broke his wings off then beat him up (poor thing). So now he needs "Security" at his appearances (or so the story goes)

    For those of you who have not seen the Windy Miller advert that Christophe (and others) have mentioned here previously, that is there too; search for (would you believe) Windy Miller (with space between again) and it should be listed along with, I have to warn, a couple of other things that made me think "wot is THAT" (but I didn't look. Honestly!).

    Enjoy........... (so much for a 'quick one')

  35. At 01:18 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Parker wrote:

    If you want to improve any meal you need to add a local delight called Hendersons relish. It is made in Sheffield, and looks a bit like Wostershire sauce. It will take any stew or casserole to another level, and is the only thing to have on pies. Ask Jam Martin if he has ever tried it. If he is a propper yorkshire man then he will have a bottle of it in his cupboard.

  36. At 01:22 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Steevie fae Dundee + Glas wrote:


    Not quite "cooking" but on the odd occasion when I used to make "doorstep" chips (ie not the fast food skinny ones), I always used to put them in water in the fridge and hour or two before putting them in the oil. You have to be very careful to pat them dry b4 putting in to the hot oil or........ BOOM ! I also at that stage put them in for a minute or so, take them out, shake, let the fat heat up a wee bit, back in etc etc

    Also soup : The key to a good pot of soup is chuck what you want in (I've been known to throw old cheese in. Just becuase it was there). When asked for my recipe for my home-made soup I always say "A bit of this and a bit of that". Plus of course, leave OVERNIGHT. Like mince, home made soup tastes HEAPS better then next day.

    (In case my repeated msg gets chewed, another very quick mention : go to https://www.youtube.com - membership not necessary - and search for Irn Bru (with the space between) and choose the Snowman one to see something being shown in Scotland only. The Windy Miller advert is there too.)

  37. At 01:26 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Nev the Bev wrote:

    Always cook rice for a lesser time than it says on the packet

    Make a roux sauce with warm milk - it is easier no matter what the professionals say

    Add orange juice and zest to cabbage/sprouts for an enhanced flavour

    Never go 10 pin bowling just after you have burnt your thumb getting something out of the oven!

    I do like Heston's only idea that takes less than a week to prepare - gently fry carrots in a bit of butter - they are sweeter

    As to names my kids have one syllable names as they would only get shortened otherwise!

  38. At 01:28 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Debs '75 wrote:

    Wear an old pair of swimming goggles when peeling onions - gives people a giggle if you have company, but most of all it really works (I'd have given up with onions years ago otherwise, 'cos I just couldn't see after about a minute!).

    Once went out with a Justin. Didn't realise it was a descriptive name....;)

  39. At 01:36 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Susie Mac wrote:

    My mother-in-law asked for my receipe for tablet, which I reluctantly passed on, she then called to say it didn't work - ha ha - 'what am I doing wrong' - I'm not sure how it works but it does - it's alchemey....

    Anyway my point is ask me to make you tablet, but don't ask how I do it!


  40. At 01:54 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Gaby wrote:


    How exciting....do you need someone to roll your pastry? ;) (well, that's this message arrested by the moderators before I've even got to my second paragraph!!)

    Gab-y....yeah, I see what you mean



    Sorry, lost myself for a minute then...

    GABY'S GALLOPING GOURMET TIP: wash your hands well so they have that pale look that chefs' hands have and be yourself and you know we will love you however you do.......

    You could curdle your custard
    Gloop-up your gravy
    petit your pois
    burn your beef (ouch)
    Over-cook your aubergine
    Mess up your minestrone
    Tangle your tagliatelli
    Piquant your poussin

    ....and we would still think you were great!!


    Thank you Lynne and thank you Keith. OOh my hugs were lovely - very therapeutic.

    Moose - I made a suggestion or two re your 3-month thang, in post #77 on yesterday's (posted today), in case you want to peak

  41. At 01:54 PM on 14 Dec 2006, niall wrote:

    I work on the principle of, a bit of this and a bit of that when cooking. Yup indeed some of the 'creations' that i have generated would look good in an art gallery but taste like something the dog coughed up!

    My only advice is to make your own sauces with pasta, meats and veg.n especially with a nice plate of roast potatoes! its simple: butter, milk and flour for a white or creamy sauce with whatever fresh herb you fancy throwing in for flavour. Nutmeg goes well with roast veg as i discovered last night! The top secret, never stop stirring, not just a lame 'ho hum here we go lets stir the pot while the bacon burns' but really put your all into it!

    I guess what im saying is put the love of life into your cooking and this will reflect through in the flavours. Spread the word, love and cooking, the way to anyones heart!

    cheers y'all!


    (name thing doesn't work with me. I feel so left out!)

  42. At 01:57 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Janet wrote:

    Hi Topher

    I like to be called Janty.....

  43. At 02:06 PM on 14 Dec 2006, melanie c wrote:

    Good afternoon all.

    Janet is my mum's name. I dont think I have heard anyone call her Jan.
    My name is always shortened to Mel. Not that I mind you understand, but I do prefer Melanie.
    Top tip Kato (#14), will have to remember that one on Christmas Day!!!!
    My tip would be, get someone else to cook, it always tastes better when someone else cooks for you!!!!!!
    Laters peeps.........

  44. At 02:14 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Roberto Carlos Alvarez-Galloso,CPUR wrote:

    An obsession with Janet

  45. At 02:15 PM on 14 Dec 2006, KarenD wrote:

    Morning All from Calgary,

    heres a tip that may sound wierd but try it you will be amazed at the diggerence:
    to a large pot of home-made chilli add 1oz of dark chocolate (the darker the better).

    Enjoy !!!


  46. At 02:15 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Gaby wrote:

    Tracy-Ann - good luck this afternoon - thinking of you and sending you love

    Dr J McC - congratulations on the book!!! - wow, Dr Mark Booth has done you proud and well done you - there are a few of us fellow-bloggers that would love to see our books standing tall in the public domain : ) Good luck with your sales - I will order one from Amazon



    ps vive les livres xxxx

  47. At 02:16 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Donna wrote:

    I've never seen this blog before and have just re read some old ones from this week. I didn't know that you could write so engagingly Chris, will definitely look in again.

  48. At 02:24 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Janet wrote:

    Never blogged before, but just had to today as it's made me think for the first time ever, what's my name all about. I generally think of myself as Janet and I regularly see it in print as such in my role as - purely coincidental, given the rest of your topioc of conversation today - a food writer. Yet my hubby and close friends all call me Jan - and that's the name that certainly makes me feel loved and cared for when used to address me.

    I came across a Topher once in my work - he's a brother of Scottish chef Nick Nairn. But have to say much prefer the name Chris.

    Top foodie tip, cut back on salt and so long as you've got good quality, fresh ingredients, your food will taste miles better - the pure flavour of the produce will shine through. Nick Nairn encouraged me to try it and he is absolutely right, but it does take a few weeks for your taste buds to adjust. So not recommended for trying before Christmas.

    lots of love
    Jan(et) xxx

    PS Given your love of food and your current obsession for another foodie Janet, this foodie Janet would love to interview you sometime!

  49. At 02:34 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Gaby wrote:


    I just hope that on saturday if you do any grilling on SK that it is much for fun than the grilling that the PM had this morning

    ps mentioned it once but I think I got away with it?

  50. At 02:36 PM on 14 Dec 2006, ChrissieS wrote:

    Hi Chris (and everyone)

    I am the world's worst cook so I can offer you no advice of any description. A few weeks ago one of our fellow commentators offered a tip that when chopping onions and/or garlic, wash your hands in milk, just milk, and rinse with plain water. I can confirm it works like a dream. Up until then, I had been using rubber gloves when chopping onions!

    Chris, I will be glued to SK!!

    C xx


    Can I say thank you so much to BigUn (I am honoured to share my birthday with your mum!) Joannie, Lynne and Hazel Love for their birthday wishes - it has made that giant leap a little easier!

    Have managed to read the blog that I missed on Tuesday - oh I could go on about God for a while, but I missed my chance!

    Jax - please believe me you will be doing the right thing to walk away - no alcoholic ever "made it" without help (not necessarily AA) -but the absolute crux of the matter is, he must WANT to stop drinking and he's not there yet. He may never reach that point. Save yourself, you are not wrong.

    Moose - you do what's best for you. My own feeling is that when we tell our boss we have been offered another job, we really have to jump ship. Once you agree to stay, your bargaining power is diminished quite badly and the next time you get a pay rise - I'll be able to cook!

    Finally, DWNB - that teacher is a bully and with all bullies the only thing you can do is confront them! When I was at school (three hundred years ago) one of my teachers did the same to me. My mother went to the school, personally confronted this dame and everything changed overnight! A wee bit of power is a very dangerous thing and some people just get so carried away with it. Good luck in sorting this out!

    C xx

  51. At 02:45 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Em wrote:

    Hi Chris,
    My tips for cooking are : When something smells cooked it's probably ready, especially pizza!

    NEVER, EVER, EVER read the back of packaging for cooking times............you'll either have a pile of charcoal or a trip to the Doc with food poisoning!


  52. At 02:53 PM on 14 Dec 2006, kev wrote:

    Hiya Chris and the gang.
    Only a few words to say how I feel at the moment. Here we go...........


  53. At 02:56 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Cheryl wrote:

    Maybe the 'topher' is to give you a gender, CLP.

    The male 'topher' to the female 'tine' - its clear for all that Christopher is a chap and Christine a laydeeeee.

    My name - Cheryl - often gets shortened to Chez.

    Ho hum. The complexities of life eh!?!?

    x x

  54. At 03:08 PM on 14 Dec 2006, jillygoat wrote:

    My mum gave me the name Jill because it couldn't be shortened, and my brother Jeffrey as they didn't mind it being shortened to Jeff, but what they didn't bargain on was my name being lengthened to Jilly or Jillian, or "is that with a G or a J"?

    My brother & his wife chose Sam, Zoe, Tom and Amy for their children, but as soon as he was born Sam became known as "Jussam" as everyone asked "is that Samuel or just Sam"? Now it's is that Thomas or just Tom?

    My friend's little boy is called Zion - poor little blighter!

    jillygoat x

  55. At 03:10 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Lynne wrote:

    Hi Topher and everyone else,
    Know what you mean re sounding funny the more you say it, some words do that.

    Your blog today had me lol.

    What a great idea everyone to suggest tips.

    My mum always used to watch SK. She's no longer with us. Wonder whether my sister would record it for me?

    I'm sure I should have some sensible tips somewhere- just can't think of any at the mo'.

    Whist drinking tea (a fav, pastime of mine) and eating homemade scones and lemon drizzle cake (curtesy of Nigella) earlier, saw 4 roe deer in the clearing on our land. Watched them for ages before they wandered past our window about 30 metres away and disappeared behind the garage.

    Ah well off to read everyone's comments now and think what my offering could be.

    Lynne x

  56. At 03:28 PM on 14 Dec 2006, moose wrote:

    Hi all,
    Little time, need to make sure everything is done today so I can go to interviews tomorrow...

    Cooking - definitely there to be made up on the hoof.
    Tips - boil said hooves for about a week, otherwise they are a little tough.
    Second tip - don't try it with moose hooves, they don't taste good in a crumble. Plums are better!

    Don't try and shorten my name or you will confuse me with other animals.

    Gaby - ta, saw them.
    McCrumble - excellent. Which shop, can we visit?
    Anyone owning up yet to yesterday Fox the Fox, even if it is you Christophe? (nice theory McCrumble...like it)
    Tracey-Ann - thinking of you this afternoon.


  57. At 03:41 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Dr Joseph McCrumble wrote:

    Anna Log - Thanks for your suggestion that Dr Booth should receive a payrise. As I pay him nothing at the moment, any rise would be welcome I'm sure. However, he is already fully recompensed for his scientific research by his employer, and his charitable efforts are what he does by way of a hobby, as far as I can ascertain.

    Hazel - Dr Booth told me that your cheque arrived in the post this morning. He is dispatching a signed copy of the BOTB today, so that the whole family can enjoy reading through it after Christmas dinner (he made me sign several of them last time I visited). Please be aware, before you show it to young children, that the BOTB does ioccasionally feature rude words, and scenes that may disturbe the formation of delicate minds. I advise you to read through it at least once, and apply whatever level of censorship you deem suitable.


    J McC

    P.S. Hazel - If, after reading the BOTB, you would like to comment, you can do so through the 'guest book' feature at www.matangini.org.uk

  58. At 03:50 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Nicki wrote:


    The company I work for, although nice people (I actually knew one of the directors long before I started working for him) My contract said I guess pretty much the same as yours, if all goes well extra dosh after three months.

    I've been here nearly 2 years, and guess wot, still no extra dosh, all I get is 'you know we can't afford it at the moment'

    So, I will hang on until I can no longer afford to work for them and then start the awful job hunting thing again.

    I would suggest hang on in there for a bit, but be sure to remind them as each month passes!
    That is if you think the jobs worth hanging on for.

    Best of luck

  59. At 03:57 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Deb wrote:

    Hi Chris, hi guys

    A really good tip when cutting up onions is to wet the knife and the onion before you start. For some reason it makes your eyes sting and water less.

    Deb-orah, Deb-bie, just plain Deb will do fine x

    Good luck for Saturday,

    Love Debx

  60. At 04:05 PM on 14 Dec 2006, anna wrote:

    names are a curious thing arent they. My mum and dad were in a hippy commune thingy when i was conceived so they asked the 'leader' to choose my name. He was called Bapak and wrote a letter to my mum after her request, outlining what i should be called and why. I still have the letter, it came from India, and i am very proud to have had my name chosen in such a way.

    As a child tho, i did always complain that you couldnt buy mugs with my name on - and swore i would never do that to my child..... then i called him Harley. You try finding a mug (or frankly anything with a childs name on it) in the name of Harley. Sorry son.

    Jillygoat - surely if it is in your contract, they cant do that......
    Debs 75 - Justin. I think i met him too. Such a dissapointment.


  61. At 04:15 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Lorna wrote:

    Hi all

    top tip - when making cheese sauce, add a little english mustard - makes it taste really cheesey for some reason?!?

    my name used to get shortend to lorn - then lengthened to lornmower!?!?

    strange how we like to shorten names and then make a completely new word from it.

    I'm off tomorrow to START my xmas shopping, so have a great weekend everyone


  62. At 04:24 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Dr Joseph McCrumble wrote:

    Gaby - Thanks very much for your kind offer to buy the BOTB. If Amazon claim it's out of stock, Dr Booth has quite a lot of copies available by mail order. Instructions are given in the FAQ at www.matangini.org.uk/mccrumblebook.html


    J McC

  63. At 04:28 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Gaby wrote:

    oops, please excuse my typo in #49 above.....it should have read 'much more fun' not 'much for fun' Oh dear, I must try harder.

    Typos reminds me of that superb one we had a few weeks ago where there was a battery being 'fukky' charged. I am laughing like a mad thing at that one ......again : )


  64. At 04:29 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Jax wrote:

    ChrissieS #50 - who needs to cook when you can dish out advice as good as that.
    Words noted - it's just hard to take the tough line sometimes isn't it. Can't quite get used to the cruel to be kind thing. His issues go way too deep for me to be able to help. He says he wants to stop drinking but he can't want it that much cos he hasn't done it yet. I feel so angry with him for ruining our relationship - but also very guilty for moving out. It's just pants!

    Top tips on the cooking front from everyone. Will refer to them all on many occasion I'm sure. Roast potatoes (which I could not live without!) - par boil them, empty out water, shake 'em about a bit, then cover them in plain flour - makes them, very very crispy. Mmmmm :-)

    Tracey-ann - thinking of you honey. Sending love and cuddles x

    Cath - hope you're bearing up? Sending love and cuddles x

    {{{{{Hugs}}}} and XXXXXKissesXXXXX to everyone today - especially those who feel things aren't so good for them just now.

    Lotsa love,

    J x

  65. At 04:31 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Gloria wrote:

    Hello all, it's great to be getting all these free food tips, ain't it?

    Jillygoat #29 - if the extra £2.5k was part of the package agreed with you on appointment (particularly if you have it in writing), you could insist upon it on the basis that for the employer to do otherwise would be a breach of contract.
    However, if they are telling the truth (and that will be for you to judge) you may wish to consider the alternative = no job. It may be worth negotiating around a smaller increase now with deferrment of the rest to an agreed point if you like the job and want to stay.
    Hope this helps - trust me, I am quallified in this stuff!

    best wishes to all


  66. At 04:33 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Joannie wrote:

    Hi Topher :-) and all my blogging friends...


    A few tips :

    ** Always have a bottle of wine on hand - you can either cook with it or use it so your guests cannot tell that your delish dish did not work :-)
    Can also be used while cooking :-)

    - To test the doneness of your cake, use a raw piece of spaghetti.
    - If a cake sticks to the pan after baking, set the pan over a pot of boiling water for a minute or two. It will pop out.
    - To make better French fries just soak fresh-cut potatoes in water for five minutes, drain and pat dry before cooking to remove the excess starch that causes them to clump together (and from keeping them from sticking to the pan while cooking.
    - For extra crispy fries, dust them lightly with flour before you fry. (restaurants apparently use this tip!)

    But I, like others, add a bit of this and a bit of that while cooking, sometimes it works and sometimes it does not!!! (Hence the bottle of wine).

    Tracey-Ann - ((good luck this afternoon))

    Gaby - Loved your galloping Gaby Gormet tips :-)

    Jillygoat- I would think the company you work for are bound by the contract. However I dont know what you can actually do about it!! Is leaving an option??

    Joannie xxx

  67. At 04:36 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Gaby wrote:

    Is it too late to vote for 'Sports Personality of the Year'?.........No pressure on Ashley Giles next time then.....


    ps the full monty

    pps sorry Moose - I made a typo in your message too - I had you peaking instead of peeking!! ( so many one-liners flooding my mind - but I will resist!!)

  68. At 04:48 PM on 14 Dec 2006, jillygoat wrote:

    I've just remembered another tip:

    add a pinch of sugar to a pot of chilli - this counteracts the bitterness of the chilli and makes a big difference.

    Happy Thirsty Thursday to all and roll on ARF!

    jillygoat xx

    Tracey-Anne - big hugs & positive vibes bursting forth for you xx

    Only eleven sleeps to go until Santa-Day!!

  69. At 04:52 PM on 14 Dec 2006, colin anderson wrote:

    Good Evening,
    What is wrong with "topher"? I have a friend who has been called this(pronounced topper), for many years.
    It is much better name than Colin anyhow,


  70. At 05:01 PM on 14 Dec 2006, cathmel wrote:

    Big'un loved your joke today

    Wont be here saturday morning and don't have sky+ nor is the video working. I've got to go to our mobile home in the New Forest to clean it and drain it down for winter.

    Damnit Janet - I love that film.................

    Jillygoat - definatley doesn't sound fair........

    Starting to plan my new years resolutions how about u guys?

    Love Cath(erine)

  71. At 05:18 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Treeza Condon wrote:

    Hi Chris,

    I agree JANET is indeed a funny one, I guess all Janets disagree but it is a fact. Along the same theme try saying Conker over & over again it just makes me chuckle , can't say why nor should I on the grounds that I may be slightly daft ... I am a Cook and have my own little business cooking for the denizens of my little corner of Wiltshire, my tips are : never panic : always retain a sense of humour : If it's bad just say you LOVE it. Who can argue with taste !

    I have never watched Saturday Kitchen and I will tune in to see you Smile ....


  72. At 05:20 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Lynne wrote:

    Nicki, Did you know your post has gone on yesterdays blog. I was just checking whether mine had gone there COS I CAN'T FIND IT!!!!!

    That hasn't happened to me before. Now I have first hand experience of the blog police. I'm not offensive am I?

    I now know how you feel- Keith and everyone else. Boo hoo....

  73. At 05:26 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Joannie wrote:

    Hi Topher and all :-)

    I sent a comment in earlier but I dont think it went through, if it does I will be repeating myself....if not I have changed it up a bit! It is frustrating though when our brilliant musings disappear.....



    No tears when cutting onions...
    Light a match and blow it out. Put the non burnt end between your teeth while you cut your onion. The sulfer will absorb the fumes. Always cut the root end of the onion off last.
    A good way to cut onions without tears is to cut them near water. Running water works best. Or put them in the freezer for about 5 to 10 minutes before cutting them.

    Tracey-Ann - ((good luck this afternoon))

    Jillygoat - I am sure the company should pay up but as suggested keep asking. Is leaving an option if they dont cough up??

    Gaby - I loved the Galloping Gourmet tips

    Talk to you all later

  74. At 05:35 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Lynne wrote:

    Love the Norad sight.

    Think I'm having trouble with the blog, has no-one posted since 3.57?


  75. At 05:39 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Amanda wrote:

    Hello all!

    I hated my name when i was young. There was no-one who shared my name. I was alone among the Kristy's and Michelle's and Andrea's. Also, I didn't like the way it sounded: A - MAN-DUH. Not very feminine I must say.

    However!! My middle name is Lynn...You say it together and you get A-MANDALYNN...quite musical.

    Cooking Tip: Chill your onion before you chop it...you won't cry! Saves your eye-makeup.

    Have a great day.

  76. At 05:40 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Dr Joseph McCrumble wrote:

    Moose - The BOTB is situated at Heffers on Trinity St, Cambridge. A fine institution, boosted, no doubt by the addition of my tome. You may visit, I assume, during any of the shop's regular opening hours. Dr Booth has told me that he is in negotiation to give a book reading on my behalf at the same place, though no date has been confirmed.

    J McC

  77. At 05:52 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Jayne wrote:

    Ha Pesto!!!
    Fabulous stuff
    Buy a really good one from an italian market or deli, or make one yourself (is actually easy!) and you are set up for LOADS of culinary delights!

    Let me give you a few examples..............

    Pasta and Pesto (I know, predictable)
    Pasta and pesto and chicken
    Pasta and pesto and chichen with a sprinkle of parmesan.
    Pasta and pesto with bacon (follow above sequence....)
    Pasta and pesto and white fish (you know what to do!)
    Pesto with a bit of warm olive oil rubbed onto a baguette, then topped with mozarella and grilled!

    Pesto on a pizza base, topped with some parma ham and mozarella - mmmmmmmm

    What else does one need (apart from a good curry, fish and chips and chocolate!)

    Good luck on Saturday morning!

  78. At 05:59 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Amanda wrote:

    I forgot to mention earlier...

    I once dated a fellow named Topher.
    He was a musician.
    He was lovely.


  79. At 06:11 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Gaby wrote:

    Keith ...do you remember the good ol' days when you used to maybe say ' 5 minutes 'til the show,'?....well, with the time delay we have 'til our posts appear at the moment we would all be tucked up in bed by the time our 'only a few minutes 'til showtime' posts appeared!!! xx

    Moose...good luck tomorrow xx

    jillygoat......that's so wrong of them and effectively a breach of contract it would seem. Poor you. How much do you want to stay there? Would Citizens Advice Bureau be able to help? I have a friend who is into employment law - I will ask her - I guess it depends how far you want to take it? which goes back to my question about how much you want to stay there I suppose. xx

    Hazel Love - loved your CHRIS THE COOK : ) xx

  80. At 06:37 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Lynne wrote:

    Tip- don't try keeping track of the blog and listening to the show whilst cooking!
    Lynne x

    A good evening to everyone.

  81. At 06:48 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Lynne wrote:

    Moose- good luck for tomorrow.

    Chris- will you be playing a Christmas carol every evening until Christmas? 'Hark the Herald Angels Sing' was lovely and made me home sick, or to be more precise missing the family.

    Lynne x

  82. At 06:59 PM on 14 Dec 2006, dr mum wrote:

    A. I'm a radio-person so I dont watch TV much

    B. I am a mature and seasoned cook so why the hell would I take 'advice' from a male ingenue ?

  83. At 07:04 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Janice Shields wrote:

    My name ias Janice, I worked in local governement for 23 years and one of the lovely bosses called me Janet, and I just answered to him, saved any confusion, so much so I am affectionately known as Janet. My sister is called Jacqueline and if anyone phoned the house looking for Jacqui, my mum said , No Jacqui lives here and hung up!!

    No one was ever allowed to call me Jan except my mum!

    Good Luck on Saturday, best tip : get someone else to cook.

  84. At 07:37 PM on 14 Dec 2006, John Foster wrote:

    Hi Chris,

    Love the carols on the show. Have you ever heard "While Shepherds Watched" to the tune of "Ilkley Moor Bah Tat". It fits really well (seriously!), and it would make a great moment on the show if it were sung by a full choir.

    While Shepherds watched their flocks by night
    Flocks by night
    All seated on the ground.
    An angel of the Lord came
    An angel of the Lord came
    An angel of the Lord came down.
    And glory shone around
    And glory shone around
    And glory shone around.

    etc etc.

    Try it, it really works. Keep up the good work, it's a great show.

  85. At 08:30 PM on 14 Dec 2006, iain wrote:

    hi ALL,
    tomorrow is All request Friday, let's all request the fabulous "Do you know how Christmas trees are grown?" from the even more fabulous James Bond film "On Her Majesty's Secret Service".
    What a great way to start the programme ( or can you do better?). Truly evocative of christmas' gone by. Don't know that I've ever heard this song on the radio before.
    Anyone else know this song...if so do you concur???

  86. At 08:32 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Ian Richards wrote:

    Hi Chris,

    Loved the show as usual.

    I am a bit upset at your blog as my very first love was called Janet and to me when I was nine years old Janet was better than any Shakespear sonnet.

    I was really disappointed that I missed the Fox telling about the most expensive Chirstmas crackers but I went through the Blackwall Tunnel right at the crucial time. Isn't that always the case? If I had been going the other way I could have heard it as they have put in a repeater (like the Dartford Tunnel) that allows you to hear the radio whilst 'under the water'

    I have a couple of tips for you and the listeners.

    How do you know that your eggs are fresh? Put them in cold water and those that lie on their side at the bottom of the pan are the freshest and can be used for any dish. Those that start to point the blunt end upwards are older, the yolk and white are beginning to separate, but this means that if you hard boil them they are easier to peel. If the blunt end points straight up you can still use it but more for sauces and baking where the egg is blended in. If the egg floats chuck it in the bin and go and buy some new ones.

    For a different take on vegetables try putting a couple of tea bags in the water when you boil them. For health you could add green tea or if you want some delicate flavours try adding some herb teas.

    I have more great tips at my site https://www.foodwizard.yourpower2be.com/legendandfoodtips.html

    it is well worth a look.

    I can't tell you how much I like driving home to your programme.

    Regards Ian

  87. At 08:43 PM on 14 Dec 2006, sarah j wrote:

    i knew someone who was called Janet Planet .. i swear its true .
    Are you selling trees on sunday chris ??

  88. At 09:35 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Prof Plum wrote:

    Evening one and all

    I would just like to add Moose it was not Prof Plum in the kitchen with the lead piping.
    I don't feel like a plum crumble topped with moose. However people perceive you in different ways.

    Pheonix re golf balls. Surely Avon beach is in Dorset not Hampshire. As for your golf ball find. I hear a new sport of water golf is taking off in the area. This could explain your find of so many bunkered balls on the beach.

    It's going to be a long evening. Tonight is the finals of the Christmas show. I have to choose the finalists at the home for Retired Carabret Artisits. We can only have three to perform in the Christmas special which is being attented by the local mayor. The residents are a little edgy and a few arguments have broken out already behind the scenes.

    oh well here goes

  89. At 09:50 PM on 14 Dec 2006, ali wrote:

    I completely agree about chefs not testing out their recipes. I now won't try out some new recipes for a large group of friends until I've had a trial run!!

    I do trust a couple of books though, but I think they are by cooks and not chefs!!

    Have fun cooking!!


  90. At 09:56 PM on 14 Dec 2006, The BigUN wrote:

    Evening all,

    Great show again tonight Christopher :-)

    Tracy-Ann I hope all went well today for you {{hugs}}x

    Gaby, this blog has been one of the very best things on the internet I have ever been involved in. I can not think of anything that has upset me on here other than the over zealous BP. I do think that some of us are on a naughty list and therefore get special treatment which I for one do not think is fair or justified. I just wish that they would let me know how any of my posts could have offended anyone yet so many of them have been stopped :-( I have sent one contribution that maybe I should not have where I did tell the BP what I thought of them. ;-) I will give this one a chance of getting through before the show by saying only 19 hours until the show LOL :-))))))

    Moose, I do not know if you will get this in time but good luck for tomorrow ;-) {{{Positive thoughts}}}

    Goodnight to all who can sleep and thinking of you later to those who can not ;-)


  91. At 09:58 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Stevie B wrote:

    Eve all

    My nameis Steven, only have to drop off the "n" and you get Steve. Seems strange but it seems like it is missing more than one letter.......or is just me???

  92. At 10:31 PM on 14 Dec 2006, EG (Scotland) wrote:

    My name is Eileen. I love my name. I hate though that so many people have trouble pronoucing it. For future reference, just in case you meet me, it's pronounced I-Lean. Not Aileen, not Elaine (although very nice names themselves). OK that's the chip removed from the shoulder.

    Speaking of chips - when will your first recipe book come out Chris - you seem to be getting more and more into cooking.

    DWNB - Re the singing - Didn't recognise the names - I think you are probably a couple (maybe even 5 years (!) younger than me - I'm v.young at heart though) but just in case, music teacher and choir leader was Mrs Butchart. It would be a blast if we did know each other!!!!

    Good wishes to all bloggers.


  93. At 11:42 PM on 14 Dec 2006, Jill wrote:

    A late-night tip for the future...and I suppose it's related to cooking.

    DON'T put the kettle on the Aga and catch up with the blog while waiting for the water to boil. Very bad idea. It has now boiled dry, and smells as it probably did some time ago.

    Still, Aga kettles suffer in silence and I am confident it will be ready for action again by the time I've finished this. Time for green tea and sleep.

    Good to catch up with you all xxxxxxx

    P.S. Any ideas on how to get my 'significant other' (which series did that come from?!), i.e. my husband, to get into the Christmas mood? He's DESCENDING into Christmas, grumpier by the day as the rest of us get more enthusiastic.

  94. At 12:00 AM on 15 Dec 2006, Teresa wrote:

    Hi to Christophe and all bloggers at this festive time of the year.
    Now, I don't often get to hear Chris's show but I know Friday is all request night. Last Christmas I was driving over to see my daughter and grandchildren and on the radio was a song by Nat King Cole that I'd never heard. It was called The Boy Santa Claus Forgot. The words were so poignant, so sad. I stopped outside my grandchildren's house to hear the song to the end, and when I got inside I told them about the song - my two grandchildren sitting there with a mum and a dad, and far too many toys - but playing very happily. About two hours later my five year old grandson Ethan came to me, and said "that's so sad", I said what's that - he said "that poor boy with a broken toy and no dad". It was so pleasing to know that this five year old is able to feel for someone less fortiunate.
    So, please request this song - and listen to it, and we can be grateful for what we have.
    Happy Festive Season all - Tess

  95. At 12:33 AM on 15 Dec 2006, lyndyloo wrote:

    Good evening/morning bloggers and Chris'

    Is it only me that lengthens their name rather than shortening it and the friends that I have only ever shorten it to Lou! What's all that about?

    Top tips... when mincing horseradish it's highly advisable to employ the help of a gas mask and do the job outside!

    Will video SK but no doubt have a phone call from Dad to say if you're any good... he's an SK addict.

    Tracey-anne ... great name ... hope you're well!


  96. At 12:55 AM on 15 Dec 2006, Labhaoise (Leesha) McGrane wrote:

    Was just wondering if you are longsighted- think you are by the look of your specs but would like to know for sure
    I am a very sad optometrist
    Labhaoise xx

  97. At 01:05 AM on 15 Dec 2006, Eric the Read wrote:

    Dan-- you can wash your mushrooms all you like. Alton Brown, a very science-y TV chef here on the Left side of the Pond, weighed mushrooms before and after washing them with and without water, and couldn't determine any difference. It's one of those silly cooking myths that somehow get propogated.

  98. At 02:00 AM on 15 Dec 2006, Andrew Cook wrote:


    Best done with a glass of wine in hand and bottle in the fridge.

    You can't beat a good ol' summer stew..
    You know some'r this and some'r that!!

    Hope the show goes well on Saturday Chris

  99. At 07:01 AM on 15 Dec 2006, DWNB wrote:

    Eileen EG

    Don't the we do have the same music teachers.... But you are in Scotland, yeah? I think that registered on my guest page....

    Maybe one last word on the names. My daughter's name is Gaelic. Amazing the number of people who mis-pronounce on just seeing it! MOst said "AylidSeeat". Can anyone guess what her name is?


  100. At 08:42 AM on 15 Dec 2006, Gaby wrote:

    Good morning schmorning to bloggers, schloggers and lurkers,

    Keith - lol re your 19 hrs to the show - it made it!!!!!..and with a few hours to spare : )
    Wouldn't you just love to see the BP naughty list - I don't think we would struggle to name the top 3 or 4 : )

    Ian Botham has just said he would be inclined to put Panesar on to bowl!! How much is he being paid to think of such ideas!! : ) I love Botham really - will never forget that performance in '81.



    ps Last night I dreamt that our PM was questioned for nearly 2 hours by the police over cash for honours and that the Serio*s Fra*d Of*ice had dropped a corruption probe into a £6bn defence deal with Saudi Arabia. How bizarre.

    pps I have mentioned it twice now - probably won't have got away with it this time

  101. At 10:11 AM on 15 Dec 2006, raymondo wrote:

    As a house-husband I cook evervday and my forte' is "don't worry"
    Also I never stick to cookbook recipes, I always modify by adding ingredients I believe will improve the finished meal. We have a cookbook that came with our first GEC cooker 40 yuears ago, it does not have glossy pictures just plainly written instructions yet you can find every recipe you could desire wthin its covers. My wife has just about every famous chefs books and they all just about list the same recipes that can be found in the GEC cookbook. What rip-off murchants they all are!!!!!!!
    Good luck for Saturday I will be watching and hoping to pick up a few tips from THE MASTER.

  102. At 05:28 PM on 15 Dec 2006, lynda fry wrote:

    Can you let me know the name of the santa website mentioned on Thursday 14th December.


  103. At 06:27 PM on 15 Dec 2006, North by North West wrote:

    Sod it, didn't ring in to try to win a ticket.

    Most important requirements for great Yorkshire Puds:

    a 'hot' oven and 'hot' fat so the mixture 'sizzles'

    'cold' water/milk

    and made with plenty of love!

    Good luck - will be watching.

    North by North West X

  104. At 10:56 AM on 16 Dec 2006, Gaby wrote:


    As far as this gal is concerned....She Loves You

    Well done you. What a star. Be prepared for requests to host your own cookery show - I think Jimbo knows he has a natural in his studio -you are so genuinely interested Chris - a real inspiration


  105. At 07:04 PM on 16 Dec 2006, North by North West wrote:

    Well done on the show Chris - Your food looked great, will try it sometime, although I'm not a big fan of pork ( except the gorgeous crispy crackling ). Texted you a suggestion on Fri. for a secret sign which was the T Towel over your shoulder and you did it......... Ha Ha. Also saw you stir the egg wash anticlockwise - I laughed all the way through my Saturday morning ironing.


  106. At 05:15 PM on 17 Dec 2006, JANET wrote:

    Hi Chris
    Janet here, no, not the one previously mentioned but another one. There are a lot of us about, especially if you were born in the mid 50's. I even had a brother called John - remember the books at school Janet and John ( sorry you may be too young to remember them) but believe me many children learnt to read with them.
    I have always been called Janet never Jan. My brother married twice and both of them were named Janet how strange is that!
    Enough waffle - the reason for contacting you is to tell you about a great band called Flat Fifth from Canada they are a bit special and very talented check out their website - www.myspace.comflatfifth - they were featured on CBC radio last night and have won music festival awards in Nova Scotia so must be a "bit good". I know you must get these recommendations all the time but try them please.
    Great show - I owe you an apology as I was one of the many who when you took over earlier this year was very sceptical, but I will eat humble pie and say I was WRONG! Congratulations on a great show - entertaining, informative and fun!!
    All the best for Christmas and the New Year to you and all the team.
    All being well we are of to the French Alps and taking my 80year old mother - that should be fun!! Do you think she'll come sledging?
    have you worked out the email address yet?

  107. At 11:42 AM on 24 Dec 2006, Chris Austin wrote:

    Hey Chris,
    The reason for Topher is, if like me you have no middle name when some burke asks for "your middle name " when form filling etc you reply...Topher.. I have even been asked "Is that greek or summat?" then the penny drops and then they feel a right burke ;-)

  108. At 05:36 PM on 18 May 2007, Heather wrote:

    Oh HI! I'm listening to you all the way across the pond and then some. I live in Portland, OR and I listen to BBC radio all day. Can you PLEASE play something by the Stereophonics. I can't get any of the local stations here to play them. Traffic would be ace but anything would make my Friday!

    Cheers from the Pacific Northwest!

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