trumpetWe’re all so different in our view of the world. I might say to you that I love trumpets, old black and white films, macaroons and cycling downhill. My number one book is Remains of the Day and my favourite bird is the flamingo. I despise Jaffa cakes, loathe fantasy movies, have no patience with flutes and simply refuse to cycle uphill. You might reply that you “couldn’t agree more” with all of that.

But I’m pretty sure that you won’t.

I played a game with a friend the other day. It was about well-known people. I kicked off with Terry Wogan. “I can’t stand him”, I said. “But he’s great”, my friend argued. “I really miss his radio show”. “Bryan Ferry” I replied, thinking of his leather trousers and the louche way he caresses his microphone. “Oh, no”, was all my friend had to say about that. We worked our way through a miscellaneous collection of celebrities and had to agree to differ. But there was a select group with whom we had no quibbles… Meryl Streep, Sandi Toksvig, David Attenborough and The Queen.

I developed a fascination with these complex webs of taste when I wrote a list of things I want to do. I’d got the idea from Continue reading

Fish Mondays


I’m in a funny state of mind at the moment. Much of my time is spent thinking about the films of Billy Wilder, the novels of Jane Austen, and fish. This is both absorbing and frustrating. However, the ins and outs of Hollywood masterpieces and Regency love triangles will have to wait for future posts. For now, I’m going to focus on the fishy situation.

I’m trying to cook ten different varieties of fish and to end up with a recipe for each that I feel has been a complete success. The essential test is whether I would be happy to serve it to friends. This all sounds quite straightforward but I’m having to negotiate some unexpected hurdles along the way to seafood bliss. Continue reading