I've hung it on the wall at the New Pub.Its my new mantra.
So,ever onwards and upwards...
Discussions re what type of menu to put on at the New Pub have been our main thrust.Though we've a successful formula at the Inn,we were conscious that the New Pub is only 11 miles away and not wishing to dilute our audience if you get my drift,Chef came up with a novel plan.
Well,says he,we already know that people love bad food,so how about we do exactly that,but do it properly?Pub grub,homemade pies,fish and chips.Mass market stuff with broad appeal,but it'll be the best bad food they've ever tasted..
A fanfare to the common man..
So we've employed a new Chef.Following our previous form with the younger generation, we decided to go for a more *mature*applicant.
He's been around the track a couple of times, had his own place in the past,classically trained and knows how to do things properly.I think he just wanted something non too taxing with not too much pressure,a bit of a wind down..
Needless to say I don't think he bargained on the 70 odd hungry diners who tipped up unannounced on our first Friday night.
To be fair he didn't flap,just kept his head down and ploughed through it,with me plating up AND doing starters and calling the checks.I'm sure he enjoyed it though,I may even have seen a twinkle in his eye..
We've been getting along quite famously.
Though admittedly last Thursday I did have to tell him his balls weren't big enough.
Ice cream ones of course..
Apart that is,form a couple of little niggles...
Lets consider Chips.
I'd set the standard a little bit having done the kitchen on my own the previous couple of weeks. Home-made chips blanched off at low temperature then crisped off in the fryer at a high temperature once the check comes on.This produces a nicely cooked crispy chip which is pleasingly golden and easy on the eye.
On the first night with PubChef, I duly noted his chips weren't as crisp as one would have liked.
'I think you need to crank up the fryer a wee bit' says I.
'No' slowly and with deliberation 'the fryers OK as its is' says he..
That night as I related the days events,Chef advised caution.
'You want to be careful you don't
At this point my Violet Elizabeth tendencies came to the fore,I may even have stamped my foot.
'But I WANT crispy chips'(folding arms petulantly)
'Well' said he 'you know what you need to do don't you??'
'Already done Chef,already done..' says I (triumphantly)
'You turned the fryer up when he wasn't looking???That's m'girl..'
Desperate times call for desperate measures...
His reluctance to use the temperature probe is also a slight bone of contention.
Lets be honest there are two schools of thought with this one.There's the 'I can tell if its done by the touch of my finger' Which is true.To a certain degree.But to me its more about making sure that the food isn't overcooked than checking that its cooked(though obviously high on the agenda is not picking off ones diners with a tasty but suicidal E-Coli casserole..)
If his pinky can tell him whether a piece of fish is at the optimum 50 degree temperature(look away now EHO Inspector) when the protein has just set or if its gone beyond this by a couple of degrees then he's a much better Cook than me..
As Chef said he's probably too old school for a probe,even when Chef did his training(he's 40 FYI) the full extent of temperature testing involved inserting a skewer into said item,then placing the skewer on ones lip-if it burnt twas done..
I think we'll have to agree to disagree on this one.
Anyhoo,as I said to Chef later,I do like a good probing....
In other news in the spirit of embracing the local community Ems and I decided an entry to the fortnightly quiz held at the New Pub was in order.
We looked forward to the picture round and subsequent shining with our worldly knowledge of current events aided in no small part by Ems encyclopaedic knowledge of all things *sleb* due to her ongoing subscription to Grazia.
Need I say more?
PS I don't dare publish Chefs eagerly awaited daily missive via the text message to the landline medium on this particular subject....