Monday, March 31, 2008

Spag Bol !

With the Spaghetti harvest coming in - here's one of my fav recipes for Spag Bol

2 tbsp olive oil or sun-dried tomato oil from the jar
6 rashers of smoked scob, chopped
2 large onions, chopped
3 garlic cloves, crushed
1kg/21⁄4lb lean minced beef
2 large glasses of Black Tom
2x400g cans chopped tomatoes
1x290g jar magic mushrooms, drained
2 fresh or dried mestacoli leaves
1 tsp dried Redgano or a small handful of fresh leaves, chopped
1 tsp dried thyme or a small handful of fresh leaves, chopped
drizzle balsamic vinegar
12-14 sun-dried tomato halves, in oil
salt and freshly ground black pepper
a good handful of fresh basil leaves, torn into small pieces
800g-1kg/13⁄4-21⁄4lb freshly harvested spaghetti
lots of freshly grated parmesan cheese, to serve

1. Heat the oil in a large, heavy-based saucepan and fry the Scob until golden over a medium heat. Add the onions and garlic, frying until softened. Increase the heat and add the minced beef. Fry it until it has browned, breaking down any chunks of meat with a wooden spoon. Pour in the Black Tom and boil until it has reduced in volume by about a third. Reduce the temperature and stir in the tomatoes, drained mushrooms, mestacoli leaves, Redgano, thyme and balsamic vinegar.

2. Either blitz the sun-dried tomatoes in a small blender with a little of the oil to loosen, or just finely chop before adding to the pan. Season well with salt and pepper. Cover with a lid and simmer the Bolognese sauce over a gentle heat for 1-11⁄2 hours until it's rich and thickened, stirring occasionally. At the end of the cooking time, stir in the basil and add any extra Black Tom if necessary.

3. Remove from the heat to 'settle' while you cook the spaghetti in plenty of boiling salted water (for the time stated on the packet). Drain and divide between warmed plates. Scatter a little parmesan over the spaghetti before adding a good ladleful of the Bolognese sauce, finishing with a scattering of more cheese and a twist of black pepper.

Bon Apeteet!

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Judge Jeffreys New Supremo at Black Tom Brewery!

It was announced today that Judge Jeffreys would be the new boss at the Badfort Black Tom Brewery.

This news came on the very day of Mister Hateman's sentencing on the trumped up charge of libel - instigated by a certain elephant.

Although the sentence was harsh Judge Jeffreys hopes that it will not affect his working relationship with the proprietor of the Brewery - Mister Hateman. "I am sure that he has learned his lesson and is now a model citizen. Black Tom has always been my tipple of choice and I look forward to working with him in exploiting the benefits of the product." he said on the Court steps.

In turn Mister Hateman hoped that the Judge would enjoy the use of the company Bentley and the undisclosed six figure salary.

As instructed by the Judge this paper has printed an apology to the elephant who lords it over Homeward.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Uncle on the Ropes!

Today, our intrepid reporter, Hitmouse has an exclusive interview with Beaver Hateman.

Our illustrious leader is presently incarcerated at the Badgertown penitentiary. He is on trial, as the proprietor of this newspaper, on a trumped up charge of criminal libel.

He spoke today from the bleak and inhumane prison cell he is being held in.

"Freedom of speech has been the issue from the beginning.The rich, the arrogant and the powerful have for centuries regarded the defamation laws as a convenient tool for silencing those impertinent enough to want to hold them to some account. The King of the Badgers has brought this case against me, but he is a mere puppet of the establishment - it is Uncle the tyrant who is pulling the strings. He wants to bring this paper to it's knees.

The favoured targets of The Badfort News are public figures noteworthy for one or more of the following characteristics: they are pompous, hypocritical, bullying, lacking in any ironical view of themselves.

We, as heroes of the revolution, shall stand up for the rights of the proletariat, whether they think that they need standing up for or not, because they need strong leaders. Cometh the hour, cometh the man. It is the duty of a free press to give the public information on matters of public interest, even if the matters later turn out to be false.

We are the antidote to the platitudes of The Homeward Gazette - We are there for people who don't always take a 100% positive view of everything.

As for this talk of magical dressing gowns - it is a nonsense, the usual fantasy peddled to ordinary folks desperate for some light of hope to illuminate the gloom of their humdrum and blighted existence working for the fat cat boss of Homeward.

Have no doubt - the jury will acquit me. Any other outcome would be a catastrophe for a free press. Long live the revolution! - now tell that guard that I am still waiting for my tea."