Tag Archives: blood

Not quite the Dambusters …

21 Mar

Not my finest hour. My newest and probably most important lesson is that you don’t have to add offal to everything. By offal in this case I mean rehydrated pig’s blood and by everything I mean a delicious pasta sauce.

After eating quite a lot of meat lately (obvs offal), Daz and I had a lovely vegetarian lunch and were meant to continue that theme with a nice pasta sauce for dinner for my hard-working other half. I got some tomatoes and an aubergine and had ideas to add chilli and smoked paprika. All was going well, untill the ill-fated thought of “oh I should offal this up” …

LUCY – YOU DON’T ALWAYS HAVE TO ADD OFFAL TO THINGS!

At this point I was frying onions, garlic, aubergine and anchovies together. Getting it all to meld until I added some tinned tomatoes and turned down the heat for some simmering time. Between this and the following photo I thought, yes, what this needs is some dried pig’s blood.

Then I added the blood. (One 50ml shot of the powdered blood and then 6 more shots of water.) And two tins of tomatoes. I think that actually looks quite delicious. The downfall, the bunker of my demise was in forgetting that blood actually has quite a lot of flavour. When you cut yourself, and suck the wound (I don’t make a habit of this, but I am by nature supremely clumsy), you can taste the metal. Anchovies, also, have a strong taste.

Does blood + anchovy = delicious?

I think you can see both the hope and trepidation in this face. Have I gone too far? Is this going to be an offal mess? Would Hugh F-W look disapprovingly at me?

If truth be told, I didn’t make the most delicious dinner I’ve ever attempted. I also managed to overcook the pasta and the cheese was a bit corner shop generic cheese. Also, perhaps cheese and blood aren’t the best supper-partners either? I think I just got a bit over-excited. Not even did some last minute tomato paste improve conditions. Basically I was struck down by my own inventiveness.

After about half my bowl, I turned round and said I didn’t really like it. Daz manfully struggled on a bit further, with his bigger bowl, before bowing out. Admitting when you are wrong is a kind of wisdom though, isn’t it?

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Blood Pancakes … Are you Goth enough?

21 Feb

It’s Pancake Day! It’s time to use up all those terrible delicious things to get ready for the FAST to make ourselves EVEN HOLIER. This year I am taking up drinking appropriate amounts of liquid, rather than giving things up. It will be good for my diet, make me look like a supermodel and possibly I’ll be given some cetacean rights!

Back to the pancakes however. I found a recipe for Norwegian pancakes on the Guardian website today, and because I love Roalds Amundsen and Dahl so much I thought I’d give them a go. The recipe is here and it’s the top one. I enjoyed using the spelt flour, and really only intended to make some nice sweet ones with some stewed rhubarb.

However, I am not one to miss a oppurtunity and since I recently bought a large amount of dried blood for no real reason – other than I found it on the internet after having that boudin noir at Kendalls. I got it from a website called Tongmaster who specialise in selling all the things you need to make sausages and burgers as well as blood. My blood arrived two days after I bought it and POSTAGE IS INCLUDED. I’d definitely give their website a peruse if you’re thinking of doing things sausage related.

Yet, Hi HO, I thought, I bet blood is delicious when mixed with pancake batter. Well, my thinking wasn’t certain as that. More I reckon blood will be nice mixed with this, should I try it? As well as wondering what German for ‘blood pancakes’ was so I could sing it in a Rammstein manner whilst cooking.

BLUTPFANNKUCHEN! BLUTPFANNKUCHEN! BLUTPFANNKUCHEN!

So decided to re-hydrate some of the pig’s blood. Having never used it before, there was some trepidation, as to what the right thing to do was. I added 2 teaspoons of the powder to about 75ml of water and whisked. This seemed to give a thin blood, but not knowing how thick pig’s blood naturally is, nor about coagulation when something’s been dried, or indeed anything apart from what is on the packet above, I erred to the side of haemophilia. Do use a whisk, so you don’t get little dried blood pockets.

I added about 100ml of batter to the rehydrated blood and whisked. It looked like this:

I thought I had better build up to the making of the BLUTPFANNKUCHEN, so had a normal Norwegian one with orange and sugar. Then I thought, what if it’s disgusting? Best make a small one to test (forgetting of course, that there are things like bins, to put waste in).

Cleverly it took on an approximate geography of Wales. In you were wondering … GWAED CREMPOG!

Adding all the extra liquid does make the batter thinner. Luckily the spelt batter is pretty thick, but if you’re using a normal pancake day recipe it might be too thin, so make sure your batter is extra thick.

I hope you can see the slight nerves in my face …

The BLUTPFANNKUCHEN was actually so nice that I made another, full size one:

The blood doesn’t really taste like blood when it’s in the pancake. The best way to describe it would be to add depth and warmth and a more savoury note. The colour, I think is actually quite good, very Halloween. Both my housemate Liz (who was Goth enough to try it with me) and I agreed it tasted buttery, which is good because that’s what you want a good pancake to taste like. I think to make them again, I would see if I could hydrate the blood in the milk that goes in the original recipe, so they were quite thick and make like drop scones. Liz suggested a poached egg on top, which would be very breakfasty.

For tonight though, I ate it with some stewed rhubarb and some maple syrup. Rhubarb because I think the blood could be a bit rich, so the cuts through it. Maple syrup because it goes well with bacon. And blood is just like bacon.

Though perhaps now I look properly at the camera phone photos, it doesn’t look as delicious as it tasted. Maybe when i have a family we’ll always have Blood Pancakes and it will become some sort of tradition. Yellowbeestonbelly hybrid if you will …

I’m quite happy having dipped my toe in the dried pig’s blood bag that I would be able to do a lot more things with it. I’m not sure whether after the Haggis Making, I’d attempt things that involve stuffing slippery things into other slippery things, so black pudding might be out, but I bet it would make good casserole juice. And i think you could hydrate it in egg for omelets. Maybe even a blood rice pudding?