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Perhaps I am averse to change or becoming a bit of a fuddy-duddy, but I didn’t like the new version of Masterchef that hit our screens last night.  It might not be fair of me to pass judgement when I switched off after the first contestant was handed his apron – so you’ll see I’ve hardly watched any of it, but I just didn’t enjoy those first 5 minutes.

Did anyone else feel the same?  The first thing that turned me off was the new sleek kitchen – the dark finish, clinical feel, and row after row of kitchen stations – it felt so unfriendly! 

And where has the good old fashioned invention test gone?  In the few minutes I saw John and Greg, who I think are great, seemed very staged…”One minute,” says Greg, “this decision has to be unanimous.”

It felt like X-Factor for food.  I miss the old friendly, bright white kitchen, the invention test with, those embarrassing moments when someone has come up with something truly awful and had you shouting at the telly, “How did they get through the auditions?!” 

The ‘new’ Masterchef feels unfamiliar and for me less enjoyable.  It seems they have created a new TV cookery competition, but called it Masterchef, when it really isn’t. 

What do you think?  Did it get better after the first 5 minutes?  Should I make myself sit down and push through everything I hate about it to get to the good stuff?  Or do you share in my sadness?

Sometimes you just need something simple, quick and tasty to eat in front of the telly.  For me this week it was mushrooms on toast.  Made with mushrooms from Unicorn Grocery and bread from Barbakan.

Where has the week gone?  Not much excitement on the food front to report – but tonight Mr Rigg and I have planned out our meals (in theory!) for the next week.  There’s something deeply satisfying about being grown up and able to write a list of all the things you want to eat and being able to go out, buy the ingredients, and come home and eat those things.

As well as food planning, I’m also longing for a weekend of getting the house ready for Christmas – hopefully a tree can be found and a wreath put up.  Is anyone else starting to decorate for Christmas?

Thanks to the little sis for making me aware of this…

It’s not often that I feel passionate enough about television blunders to openly rant about them, but this is one of those times.

Last night I watched as famed chef Jason Atherton cook a delicious dessert with a syrup of wild….cow parsley?!!!   On the search for a farm shop as part of the tv show Ten Mile Menu Jason hopped out of the car and started telling celebrity athlete Colin Jackson about the joys of wild food.

He points out the bountiful hedgerows laden with elderflower (at this point, I can only see cow parsley but continue watching with complete confidence).  Then the camera switches to them picking….cow parsley.  Truly, they are stood at the roadside gathering a large bunch of cow parsley. 

I had to rewind to watch again.  I’m so certain that he picked cow parsley rather than elderflowers.  I couldn’t believe that a chef such as Jason Atherton (winner of multiple dishes on The Great British Menu and former chef patron at Gordon Ramsey’s Michelin-starred Maze restaurant) could make such a huge mistake.

By this point I was convinced that when they got to the cooking part, that they would have realised their error and the cow parsley would have been substituted for a bunch of elderflower.  But no!  There was the cow parsley sitting on the kitchen counter ready to be made into an elderflower syrup…surely not!!! 

Through some kind of kitchen wizardry Jason Atherton managed to transform a bunch of somewhat unfragrant hedgerow weeds into a delicious elderflower syrup to accompany his dessert.  The dessert was garnished with more of those pretty ‘elderflowers’…noooooo!

I adore both cow parsley (for decoration purposes only) and elderflower (for a refreshing summery drink) and know what they look like, know their differences.  I just can’t believe that I saw someone mistake one for the other and even garnish a dessert with cow parsley flowers.


Image: dreamcrisp; Hainault Forest


Image: Farm Woodland Forum; Mersea Wildlife

Did anyone else see this and share my concerns?!!!  If so, please get in contact!

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Eat the Earth

I love food, especially locally grown and seasonal food. This is my place to share my food finds and the food I like to eat.

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