Monday, December 18, 2006

sloe, sloe, noodle, eel, sloe

Firstly, another plug for a local Bristol business: the very wonderful Kin Yip Hon Oriental supermarket on St. Thomas Street down near Bristol Temple Meads railway station. A veritable Aladdin's cave of pan-Oriental goodies from green tea to tinned fried gluten (whatever the heck that is). I mentioned this because I bought a job lot of the Shin Ramyun noodles (pictured here) a day or two ago. These approximate pretty closely the sort of spicy noodles I used to get in South Korea back when I was living there (roughly between the ages of 5 and 6 and a half), and they're great. Hot though. Which reminds me of an interesting linguistic fact I picked up during my other 18-month sojourn in a foreign country (Java, between the ages of 8 and a half and 10): the Indonesians have two words for "hot"; one (panas) meaning hot as in temperature, and the other (pedas) meaning hot as in spicy. Is that not a highly sensible arrangement, precluding an awful lot of explaining, particularly in a tropical country with a tradition of spicy cuisine?

The other food item pictured is a tin of roasted eels, which looks interesting, though I haven't felt quite robust enough to tackle it yet. Fascinating eel fact: uncooked eel blood is toxic.

Right, that's enough food, let's move on to drink. In the run-up to Christmas I decided to decant one of the jars of sloe gin I prepared a couple of months ago. Normally 3 months would be the optimum storage time, but this batch of berries was very ripe, so I thought I'd do one jar's worth early in order to a) have some for Christmas, and b) have some to put in the hip flask for Dartmoor. So - step 1: rig up the jelly bag (you may remember this from the apple & mint jelly post a while ago) above a large bowl and decant the contents of one jar into it, berries, twigs, dead sparrows and all. Then scoop the resulting filtered liquid out and bottle it up. This first jar made one full 500ml bottle, one full 250ml bottle, and the beginnings of a 750ml bottle, out of which I had a quick tot, just to check things out.

Mmmmm......delicious. No, it actually was, despite my comical facial expressions here. I reckon the rest, when I decant it in early February, will be even better.


The Black Rabbit said...

Yes. You DO look VERY South Korean in that first photo...!

electrichalibut said...

I suppose so! Slightly strange that despite being taken within 30 seconds of each other, in the same place, with the same camera and flash, the one on the left looks yellow while the one on the right looks sort of pinky-mauve. See what I mean? What's all that about then?

Andy said...

The only explanation is that you changed colour in those 30 seconds. What's that all about?

The Black Rabbit said...

chromatophores obviously.
Like some sort of massive frigging cuttlefish.
But instead of ejecting ink, more likely to exude stink...