Wednesday, 2 May 2007

Tender Pieces in Gravy

So, I have now dipped a tentative toe into the pond of Melburnean choralia, and I'm yet to find out whether it's full body immersion or I'm to spend my Monday evenings amusing myself. The latter wouldn't be so bad, Monday in the 'Bourne being Half Price Night at the Flicks and all.

I was a wee bit nervous. I'd had to run through the dark and gloomy copses of Carlton Gardens, chased by a horde of megalopossums. Consequently I forgot how to breathe, which made for a bad case of syllabus interruptus. There was also a bit more wobble than is quite decent in a budding chorister. "We'll be in touch", said the jovial conductor. I think this may mean "Have you considered yoga?"

The trauma of all this - the breathing, the possums, the fact (did I mention?) that I left my turquoise scarf on the tram - was enough to turn me to the demon dinner, the tin of Sanitarium Tender Pieces TM that's been sitting in my pantry for two months:

Chunks of gluten in gravy. Not just meat for vegetarians, but dogfood for vegetarians. Why?, you ask. Why, when there are perfectly tasty chickpea and pumpkin curries to be et, why would you so much as contemplate evil-looking faux meat from a tin? I do not know. It won't happen again. But while we're on the subject: vegetarian haggis, in Edinburgh, surprisingly tasty.

P.S. Bill Heffernan is a dill.


wool spaniel said...

Vegetarian haggis: wee chickpea gizzards, lentil entrails, sweetmeats of haricot and buckets of barley boiled in imitation soy stomach; a set of flatulent bagpipes; the ceremonial recitation of Robbie Burns; and a daring plunge of the sword into the steaming mass. Mmmmm. I think the marauding Possums of Vocal Disruption would enjoy it!

Sorry to hear about your scarf, and good luck with the news!

JahTeh said...

You didn't lose the Alannah? I think I'll cry.

That's always worried me about vegetarian fake meat, why bother with something you wouldn't eat if it was real.

And Heffernan.......see what happens if you use one of your best insults on another ego with a dick hanging off it.

alexis said...

The possums would go berserk over veg haggis, these being the possums that also go berserk over sweet-and-sour duck. The haggis I et had a lot of salt and tasty spices (thyme and rosemary, onion and garlic, I think), and a medley of pulses and grains (oats, kidney beans, red lentils).

I dunno about this "flatulent bagpipes" business, Woolly.

alexis said...

Oh no no no, JT, not the Alannah scarf. This was an acrylic woven job, procured for $1 in a second-hand shop about five years ago. I'm still peeved that I've lost it, but.

I don't really want to think about Heff's genitalia, although it's hard to avoid when he goes about proclaiming - and here I quote from yesterday's Bulletin - "Priests, like the rest of us ... wake up with a horn at four in the morning". Speak for yourself, Bill.

Who votes for this fellow?

Karen said...

I'm sorry to hear about the scarf and I'm sure you're being far too hard on yourself about the audition. And if only Carlton Gardens had some squirrels- they'd sort out the feral possums quicksmart!

Vegetarian haggis sounds like the edible form! I've always been puzzled, though, by this imitation meat business. One material designed to look like another is my definition of bad taste visually and I imagine that holds good in the dining arena too.

Heffernan is living proof that politics ain't no meritocracy. Really, it's amazing he stayed after the Kirby business.

alexis said...

I agree, in general: fake meat, why bother. But occasionally I get a perverse hankering for protein in lump form. I'm also rather partial to a chickpea and spinach sausage.

The Kirby defamation was just horrible. Heffernan should go into gardening, or something else innocuous, posthaste.

Mr Mean said...

To some classes of practising Buddhists bound to vegetarianism by the first of the Five Precepts (ie. "refrain from killing"), or even lay people to whom their surrounding Buddhist culture dictates a vegetarian diet prior to certain events or at particular times of the year, it is understandable why imitation meat varieties are marketable. The desire to assert one's position in the food chain, and the partaking of 'common' earthly pleasures of consumption, socially or otherwise, may be considered obstacles to Enlightenment by some, but are not expressly discouraged by a literal interpretation of the precepts.

One can imagine how a lump of garishly coloured and blandly flavoured something – the best description I can come up with for my childhood memories of "vegan roast pork" – can be made more palatable and appetising by pretending it is something forbidden. After all, in a hypnotic trance a person could be actually chomping down on a raw onion, but perceive herself in every sense to be eating an apple. Why shouldn't one, then, practise self-hypnosis (of sorts) when she is limited in one's food choices by religion or culture?

Perhaps fantasising about giving ol' Bill a clip behind the ear feels nearly as good as doing it in reality…

Karen said...

I can understand it perfectly in those circumstances. Thanks- that hadn't occured to me.

alexis said...

Just to clarify: on the rare occasions when I want to eat fake meat, it's not that I want to eat meat but am compelled by my ethics to suffer an inferior substitute, it's that I actually want to eat fake meat. You carnivores will occasionally want a Big Mac rather than a steak dijon, and you really really would prefer the Big Mac. It's more or less the same thing. Fake meat comes laden with salt and preservatives and the sorts of fancy flavours you just don't find in the wild.

Mr Mean said...

What about when you want to watch Kill Bill?

alexis said...

Kill Bill Heffernan?

TimT said...

That sounds like a good idea.

Miss Eagle said...

Gee Whizz, you're polite about Bill Heffernan. Over at The Eagle's Nest at I've got quite carried away - given him horns, even. Can I have his head on a plate please instead of the Tender Pieces in Gravy? Don't promise to eat it. Just do it in aspic and put in on the sideboard?

alexis said...

Miss Eagle, I hear your anger, but for all that what he said about Gillard was stupid and offensive and hurtful, I think he should be legally "allowed" to say it. He was clearly expressing an opinion, rather than purporting to relay facts, as in the Kirby incident. I'm comforted - and I hope I'm right in this - that what he said was so self-evidently absurd, it'll make him look like a nong and garner support for Gillard.

Maria said...

I can say the chickpea and spinach sausage is one of the latest in vegetarian fads I am definitely not partial to.

Vege lasagne? Vegetarian pies? I'm used to having a bit of meaty chunks inside a lasagne or pie, but bring it on.

However, chickpea sausage or chickpea hamburger patties are just wrong to me.

The main reason being, they just don't hold together the way a minced beef/pork pattie or a pork sausage will. I've tried chickpea sausage and hamburger patties and both disintegrated in the frying pan on me. I should have eaten separate chickpeas!

Many other vege recipes out there work nicely out there, but sausages aren't one that come close to the standard of their meaty cousins.

By the way, if you can get vegetarian tender pieces, can you get imitation fruit and veges, really made out of meat, for those meat lovers who'd love the experience of eating a fruit or vege, without actually having to eat one?

Tomatoes and Peaches, made out of pork and corned silverside, perhaps?

lucy tartan said...

Yesterday I read a professor of economics at rmit opining that Heff had a point, etc etc.