Food wasn’t really on the cards tonight, and I knew I had the rest of a ham hand and a few bits and pieces to liven it up.
I boiled a few more tatties and a big handful of fine green beans, and sliced and cooked in butter one of the overly expensive fennel bulbs I had picked up at the smelly farmers’ market. I tossed it all in with the remaining beetroot & rocket salad and the rest of the ham trimmed and torn into bite-sized chunks, all of it coated in a simple vinaigrette. The fennel, which I had flambéed in some Ricard for the craic, was extremely sweet owing to the slight caramelization of its vulvaic cross section. It was soft and delicious; organic, inconsequentially, and more like a light green plait of tender shoots than the giant bulb of woody stems typical of the supermarket variety. It went very well with the hand, which has fed us now for two days at a cost just £2.80. If I don’t put the Loaf off this minute, I am going to wash it all down with the ice cold tin of Scrumpy Jack that has been tormenting me from the depths of the fridge for hte last 5 weeks.