T'eyla Minh (teylaminh) wrote,
T'eyla Minh

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Some ramblings and a recipe

This weekend was actually semi-productive, even though the productivity was quite boring in and of itself...

On Saturday we were actually up before 10.00. I headed out to pick up my prescription (finally, I have some medication!) and other bits, including stuff to make a shepherd's pie later in the evening (onion, carrot, swede), meat from the butcher and a lottery ticket.

Then I decided to sort out the pile of miscellaneous paper and card that had accumulated in the living room, managed to form a sizeable pile of recycling, file away the payslips and bills, and then discovered a boxful of random stuff which must have been on the shelves since the day we moved in, and a box of ornaments which are now on the shelf freed up by said box.

We went to the pub for one drink and picked up some stuff from the off-licence on the way back. I have a bottle of blue Reloaded Red Square in the fridge which is really gloopy and quite horrible, but I think I've just lost my taste for alcopops in general really... I should probably finish it, though.

The shepherd's pie was very very nice and very large, so we have the remainder for lunch today. It also turns out I like swede, and I made a valiant effort with the carrots (Somerfield were selling a bag of diced carrot and swede for 60p) but I'm afraid they defeated me after a while... Still, an effort is an effort, and I'm slowly trying to extend my repertoire of vegetables-I-will-eat. In any event, it's better than about three years ago when all I would eat were potatoes and parsnips. :P

Of the evening we watched The Passion of the Christ, which was... well, what it says on the tin, really. Quite gratuitously violent and brought back memories of GSCE RS (the endless gospel studies), and my inner language geek was sitting there being fascinated by the Aramaic and working out where words like 'pariah' (literally 'son of God' in what I presume was Aramaic given the scene) come from. :D Oh, and getting annoyed by the church Latin. Reading up on IMDB last night just out of morbid curiosity, there are two interesting things to note: not a single FAQ (because obviously the story is self-explanatory and presumably anyone asking a question goes straight to Hell for NOT KNOWING THEIR BIBLE! :P), and a whole lot of crew and cast members converted to Catholicism after production ended, including the athiest who played Judas, ironically enough. ;) Glad to know these people have such faith in their own, um, faith, or lack thereof.

Interesting that Satan was portrayed as a woman, too. Or at least played by a woman, if not portrayed.

As an athiest I am perhaps not the best person to judge a film like this, but I wanted to see it almost as soon as it came out, mostly because of the hype and the languages used, and was only stopped by a lack of nearby cinemas (the nearest one in Derby being a taxi journey away). I think at one point Naomi and I considered standing outside the cinema on opening day singing the Tiger Lillies' "Banging in the Nails", but I suspect we may have gotten stoned by angry Catholics... ;)

I suppose I can understand why making a film like this could convert someone, but just watching it doesn't have the same effect; or perhaps I'm just more confident in my own belief system than most. My stance as an athiest was that Jesus existed, but he was just a man - by all accounts he may well have been a fantastic showman, a magician, and quite possibly a raving lunatic, but he obviously had the presence and power to influence people and that's quite admirable. In that view, the film is a powerful representation of the punishment he suffered at the hands of his followers (Pilate makes a valid point when he says, "Wasn't this the same man you welcomed five days ago?") and I can understand why so many Christians - Catholic or otherwise - found it such a significant experience...

Anyway, that's enough about that.

Sunday was equally lazy and involved doing some embroidery and finally sitting down to listen to Danny Elfman's Serenada Schizphrena, which was... interesting. I need to listen to it again a bit more thoroughly but there are some very nice moments in it, a lot of it is very typical Elfman but with a more, um, symphonic approach...

I shall leave you with a recipe for my shepherd's pie...

Easy Shepherd's PIe

(Specially "shepherd's" pie because it's got lamb in it... substitute the lamb for Quorn or whatever you like. This serves about 4 people, I would say.)


500g [lamb] mince (I presume, can't remember the weight. A standard packet.)
1 medium onion
6 closed-cap mushrooms
1 bag diced carrot / swede OR 1 carrot and about 1/2 a swede, I presume
2 stock cubes (mine were beef Oxo)
6ish large potatoes (I used 4 large and four small)
butter (or oil for frying if you prefer)
chopped mint
Worcestershire Sauce (magic!)


Peel the onion and wash the mushrooms, chop into large chunks and place into food mixer. Whizz on full power until chopped small. Alternatively, cut into whatever size pieces you like, I'm just fussy.

Peel potatoes and chop into 1cm-thick slices. Place into saucepan of water with some salt.

(Dice carrot and swede if you have to.) Half-fill another saucepan with cold water.

Grate some cheese.

Start the two saucepans going (one with sliced potato in, one with just water). Melt some butter into a frying pan and gently cook the onion and mushroom. When cooked, add the mince and stir regularly until browned off.

Add carrot and swede to water once it starts to boil and cook until soft (about 15 minutes).

Crumble two stock cubes into the lamb/onion/mushroom concoction and stir - there should be plenty of moisture to absorb it. I threw in some chopped mint and a splash of Worcestershire sauce, too.

Cook the mince, stirring regularly, until the carrot and swede are cooked.

Decant mince mixture into a bowl, drain carrot and swede and add to bowl, then mix together.

Pour layer of mince and veg mixture into a suitable oven-proof container.

Drain potatoes (which should be soft by now) and make mash with milk and butter or whatever your preferred method is.

Spread layer of mash on top of the meat - this bit never works properly unless you have a piping bag or similar - and sprinkle cheese on top. And more Worcestershire sauce, if you like.

Place dish under grill until cheese is browned off.


Lovely jubbly. :)

I am becoming quite the culinary goddess. I'm going to attempt something from our new Italian recipe book for Valentine's day, so that should be interesting...
Tags: recipes, religious crazies, reviews: films
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