Archive for the ‘Food Mysteries’ Category


Fructology. Why have I never heard of it before? Related to ayurvedism and humoral type-casting, but solely within the land of fruits.

Throughout the ages, women and men have sought to divine information about their past, present and future from the natural world. Quantum physicists have learnt that all things in the universe are interconnected, thus demonstrating the truth behind the science of Astrology. All over the planet, people read with awe the predictions made in their star-sign, moon-sign and sun-sign horoscopes. These accurate charts are created by the scientific interpretation of the relative positions and movements of the various Astral bodies within and without our Solar System. It is known that the planets affect the lives of  those born under them, as the pull of gravity affects the very molecules in our brains at the moments of birth and conception.

This science is, however, limited. The stars and planets are dead bodies – balls of rock or flaming gas, and nothing more. Something is missing. That something is the life-force itself. The Elan Vital, as it were. During his life-long search for the Truth, Doctor Barnett began to formulate the science of Fructology (or Fruit Signs) and it’s related science of Fructitherapy (fruit-based healing), based on the realisation that peoples from around the world exhibit minor modifications to their Astrological personality types. The one thing in common throughout the world, a thing which exemplifies the very essence of life itself, is fruit.
As the seasons roll across the face of the world trees, flowers, shrubs and hedges burst into life, expending their life-energies in the production of fruits.

Like people, fruit comes in all imaginable shapes, sizes, colours and textures.

There are eight fruit-life types, according to the website. I am going to try to find mine. If it affects my aura by the practice of eating the advised fruit-types, I’ll report back. Oh, in a month or so. I wonder what fruit-type I’ll turn out to be. I wonder what fruit-type you’ll turn out to be, too!

Read Full Post »

Did I get enough exercise today? How many calories did I burn? Am I getting good quality sleep? How many steps and miles did I walk today?

(from fitbit site)

and more things I need to know:

and even more things I need to know:

Does it hint at lurking insanity of some sort when one needs to know

Did I get enough exercise today? How many calories did I burn? Am I getting good quality sleep? How many steps and miles did I walk today?

Thanks in advance. Because I need to know.

Read Full Post »

Evangelism in a bowl of spaghetti-o’s.

I hate to say it but mostly I just want to wipe the sides of the bowl.

Read Full Post »


by Branston, P.I.

It was 2:30 AM by the clock at my bedside and I’d awoken with a sudden start. Lightning briefly flashed outside my window. Something felt terribly wrong.

We were staying at the country estate of Kincaid Eblowster, the world-famous art critic. He’d hired me to find the jewels that had been stolen from an art installation during a performance piece the previous weekend. Naturally I brought Boris along in case any manual labor was required.

Why was I sure something was wrong? Granted, the decor in the guestroom was not of the usual sort but was that really enough to give me pause?

Damien Hirst

After all, it was not everyone who could have the pleasure of sleeping on a hard cot with an egg-crate table in the same room as Damien Hirst’s Ode to Rene Magritte and Francis Bacon and I was quite tickled by the experience. An honor indeed.

It came to me in a flash what was wrong. Boris was gone. But where? And why?

I knew it was an impossibility that he was anywhere in the house for he could always be heard within one-quarter mile with that snort-like way he had of breathing that had been caused in his youth by trying to swallow a pigeon (grilled with plum sauce) whole one glorious Autumn day while playing eating games with his mates.

Grabbing my flashlight I ran through the house. No Boris. He must have been kidnapped.

As I approached the kitchen there was a small funny noise. It sounded like a little slurp. And as I heard it I realized there was an even worse problem than Boris being kidnapped – I was hungry. Really really hungry.

The large gleaming surfaces of the kitchen looked too clean and perfect to actually have any food around and upon searching the cupboards indeed it was true. This was a house where nobody cooked.

I heard the noise again, and thinking that perhaps it was Boris laying half-unconscious from lack of nutrients I followed the sound. Out the door and towards the lake house. A scratching noise seemed to be coming from behind the dark windows. Approaching carefully I raised my flashlight and prepared to crash it down on the head of whomever was lurking there. Hopefully it would be the perpetrator of the jewel robbery and I could be on my way to the next case or to the Fat Duck, whichever happened first.

Kicking open the door with a loud scream, I viewed the scene.

snack cat

There he was! The thief, caught in the act! Jewels were strewn all over the floor of the tiny lake house interspersed with piles of catnip. The perpetrator had obviously settled down for a drink to celebrate his dreadful criminal accomplishment when I’d burst into this pretty little scene.

He mewed dreadfully and started to draw close. Unsure of whether he was armed or not I crouched on the floor, preparing to defend myself.

He jumped on my lap, rapidly knocking his head into my tummy and as he did so I noticed a carton of cereal on a nearby table. Food. I was so hungry.

As he continued to batter at me with his little claws it came to me that perhaps if I were to be his friend he would share the cereal. Granted this was going over the line of professionalism but after all one never knows where the next bite will come from. I petted his head and he purred. Okay. I could deal with this.

We shared the cereal and milk and when he fell asleep on the corner of the old battered couch I gathered up the jewels to return to Kincaid. The case was solved. Except for Boris. Where was Boris?

Tripping up the lane to return to my guestroom it came to me. Boris was not there because he’d gone to visit his poor old mother the evening before and had decided to not return till morning, preferring his childhood home to sleeping in art installations.

He’d missed a fine snack. I hoped he wouldn’t regret it.

Read Full Post »

BranstonFood History and Mysteries with Branston, P.I.

It had been a long time since I’d had a sandwich. Too long, in fact. Lady Frippington-Tenses had taken to serving squid-ink foam filo bundles at teatime and though the flavor melded with the lapsang souchong in a marvelous fashion, it did not leave a body too well sated. I instructed my driver, Boris, to stop at the next pub. He growled something unintelligible while clearing his throat. It sounded a bit like my pet pig Priscilla with that squeaky water sucking down the drain noise. He then finished his sentence with a loud angry sneeze at me, in his usual menacing way.

Allow me to introduce myself. I’m Branston, P.I.

Being a private eye can have its privileges, and Boris was one of mine. My qualifications for this job did not come easily. My full title is Branston, P.I. (C.K.L.E.) My degree is as Certified Kitchen-Lounge-about Eater. The degree of course merely assists me in proving my qualifications. I am exceedingly good at what I do. I eat my way through my cases, solving them all as a mere aside to the dining. But you can call me Kitty.

Boris came along with the car when I bought it. He’d been trying to sell it for dog’s ages, asking far beyond its worth. Nobody could even find the parts for 1956 T-Birds anymore. My deep interest in the car, as well as the fact that I was toting along a pan of fresh-baked lasagna as I inspected it with a bag of chocolate chip cookies dangling ever-so-discreetly from my arm, seemed to open this large morose fellow up a bit. He offered to sell it to me for half of his asking price, if I would let him be my driver. I didn’t need a driver, but he was ornamental and free. How could I say no to that? So Boris and I had traveled together through all my cases from that moment on.

There was the pub! It was The Famous Bull, right there at the Famous Cock Hotel. It looked more like a Burger King but that’s progress for you. Boris and I both leaned forward in our seats as we puttered up to the entrance, so eager were we to discover what clues it held for us inside. An intense aroma came out and almost swatted both our faces as we opened the door to the pub. It reminded me of what Aunty Peregrine (who was born and raised in Louisiana) used to drawl out whenever we ate Hot Eel Pies together those lucky times she was sober enough to form words and I was sober enough to hear her: “Tastes so good it makes your tongue wanna jump up and slap your face!” I knew that aroma, and knew what it meant.

Burgers. It meant burgers. And there’s nothing better that that when one wants a sandwich badly.

Some may not call a burger a sandwich but I do. Just a little sandwich for lunch! I trill out merrily whenever the opportunity presents itself then head wherever I can to get one of those big chunks of meaty goodness set before me. Now comes the mysterious part.

The mystery is why nobody in the US of A knows that burgers are better with Branston. Pickle. I like my burgers with Branston on top.

Let’s go to Wiki and see what they say.

Branston Pickle is sweet and spicy with a chutney-like consistency, containing small chunks of vegetables in a thick brown sticky sauce. It is commonly served as part of a ploughman’s lunch, a once common menu item in British pubs. It is also frequently combined with cheddar cheese in sandwiches, and most sandwich shops in the UK offer “cheese and pickle” as an option. It is available in the standard ‘chunky’ version, though there is also a ‘sandwich’ variety, where the vegetable chunks are smaller and easier to spread.

Cheese and pickle is good, yes. And all fictional detectives traveling through England must eat cheese and pickle as a matter of honor. But if you can, get thee to the grocers and pick up some pickle (Branston). And try it on a burger.

B on B

As a P.I., and as a C.K.L.E. also I can tell you: When eating Branston-on-Burger you will not have to close your eyes and think of England.

Read Full Post »