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Week 8: Cheating and Chillies

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We seem to have gone through this week without cooking anything new or original. Today's lunch was something we haven't made before, but that was just a quick pasta meal using a tin of condensed chicken soup as the sauce. We fried some leeks and added those.

A couple of weeks ago we bought 2 bags of going-out-of-date chilli peppers - they were a mixture of red and green chillies. I dried some by cutting them in half and putting them in a foil tray. I put some of the trays in the oven, at gas mark 1, for a couple of hours. The other trays I put on the radiator and left them for a week. The oven-dried chillies had turned brown whereas the radiator-dried ones had kept their colour. I put the dried chillies in a food processor and blitzed them to make chilli flakes.

Today I decided to try to make a chilli sauce from the remaining chillies. I chopped the chillies, sprinkled them with salt and put them in the fridge for a few days. The next step was to put the chillies, 1 clove of garlic, some spices (mustard seed, onion seed) and a splash of vinegar in a food processor and blend to a purée. I simmered the purée for a few minutes before putting it back in the food processor to make a smooth paste. I added equal amounts of water and vinegar until it reached a decent pourable consistency. I've put the sauce in a jar in the fridge to mature for a few weeks before I try it.

Grimes Graves

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The latest issue of the English Heritage magazine arrived earlier in the week. There was an article about Grimes Graves and when I saw the picture of a flat landscape full of hollows, it immediately recalled the book Company of Liars. There is a sequence towards the end of the book with a very similar landscape.

The hollows were very close to 'The Hermitage' which is marked on the map in the front of the book. This seems to be very close to the site of Grimes Graves, so it looks like it provided inspiration for the location.