Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Catweazle - Last in Wrestling Paintings Series

Catweazle - 'False Teeth'

Acrylic on canvas. 24x30cm. Painting by Luke Haines. Edition 1 of 1. Signed.
Catweazle - in Heaven. Gary 'Catweazle' Cooper, based his act upon a children's TV character.
Catweazle (the wrestler) didn't much look like Catweazle ( the children's telly wizard) but who the
hell cared. With his sack cloth and long lank hair Catweazle was the closest thing to a real
psychedelic wrestler. Now, everyone needs a gimmick and the 'Weazle had two. A plastic frog
that he'd fanny around with, (much to the irritation of his opponents) and false teeth, that would
invariably get knocked out of his mouth. Gasp at the streaks of silver paint that make up Catweazle's
amazing hair. Marvel at his fulsome beard. I painted this to a soundtrack of 'Wild Eyed Boy From
Freecloud,' that sort of thing. Catweazle - we miss you.


Saturday, 26 November 2011

Big Daddy/ Jim Breaks - Wrestle Paintings for Sale

Big Daddy - 'Rock 2'

Acrylic on canvas. 24 x 30cm. Painting by Luke Haines. 1 of 1.
Shirley Crabtree - in Heaven. The undisputed people's favourite. Started wrestling in the '50s. Retired. Then came back in the 1970s as the beloved Big Daddy. Apparently the first man to unmask Nagasaki. Here, Big Daddy stands beneath the legend  'Rock 2.' Rock 2 is Daddy's favourite pre-set on the Casio VL Tone. The Casio VL tone is the people's keyboard, and Big Daddy is the people's wrestler. Religions are founded on less than this.


Jim Breaks - 'Cry Baby'

Acrylic on canvas. 24 x 30cm. Painting by Luke Haines. 1 of 1.
Jim Breaks is a hard man. A hard man who does not like his ears being touched. If you do touch them he will cry. Then he will go berserk and hurt you very badly. When I was working on this painting, I felt that the likeness to Jim Breaks was so true, that I thought it might come alive, and that is why I have put two crosses over the ears. To remind myself not to touch Jim Breaks' ears. If you become the owner of this painting, you too will be glad that the crosses are there...there to remind you. 'Not to touch the ears.'


Friday, 25 November 2011

Wrestle Paintings For Sale - SOLD OUT

These are the original canvases I painted for the 'Luke Haines 1978 Grapple Calendar' - part of the CD packaging for '91/2 Psychedelic Meditations...' album. I'd quite like to keep them all, but I don't have room, I am hanging on to 2 paintings  - Catweazle, and Rollerball Rocco, and the remaining 10 are available for purchase here. These are all originals, each of the paintings is an edition: 1 of 1. There are no copies. I will put two paintings up for sale a day, they will remain up until they are sold. All paintings are signed.

All paintings are £175.00 inc. Post and packing in the UK. Europe + £8.00 p&p. USA + £14.00 p&p

1/ Dickie Davies. 24cm x 30cm. Acrylic on Canvas. Painting by Luke Haines. 1 of 1.
Title: 'Grapple Fans'
Dickie 'The Eyes' Davies,  Captain Willard to Giant Haystacks Colonel Kurtz, perhaps? Maybe. Not really. Sir Dick of Eyes - the housewives favourite. And, like the Mona Lisa, or The Laughing Cavalier (or Laughing Gnome?) those 'eyes' just seem to follow you around the room. So, art lovers, just imagine your very own Dickie Davies, on your living room wall, looking at you, forever.


2/ Kendo Nagasaki. 24cm x 30 cm. Acrylic on canvas. Painting by Luke Haines. 1 of 1.
Title 'Nagasaki Nightmare'
Kendo Nagasaki, the masked man's masked man. Feel the powers of Nagasaki, mystical, esoteric, the force. Kendo - a wizard and a true star.


Thursday, 24 November 2011

Adrian Street/ Bomber Pat Roach Wrestle Paintings

Adrian Street - 'Hair - Exotic'
Acrylic on canvas. 24x30cm. Painting by Luke Haines. Edition 1 of 1

His hair is pure platinum, spun of fine silk. His boa is feathered, spun of fine Ostrich. Relax everyone for he is married! He is Androgynous Adrian Street. The Glam rockers' glam rocker. Just as dads up and down the country curled a lip at the sight of young David Bowie on Top of the Pops and belched out the words 'woolly woofter', hundreds of old age pensioners sat ringside in this islands' provincial town halls, grumbling about the toll the outside WC was taking upon their arthritic joints, ignoring the spectacle in front of them - Exotic Adrian Street. Big Dave might have been singing about a Starman, but in his head Adrian Street was that Starman. I painted this coquettish canvas to a soundtrack of only the highest order orthodox glam rock. Naturally. Behold, the great Adrian Street. 


Pat Roach - 'Bomber'

Acrylic on canvas. 24x30cm. Painting by Luke Haines. Edition 1 of 1.

Pat Roach - In Heaven. Pat Roach, TV's 'Bomber', liked to refer to himself in the third person. Such is the general rot and decline in standards in our fabled country that for some reason it is now thought to be somewhat 'silly' to refer to oneself in the third person. Tommy rot. When Luke Haines paints a picture of Pat 'Bomber' Roach, he  refers to himself only in the third person. So, Pat 'Bomber' Roach, for your tireless grapple work, for your TV work, for your referring to yourself in the third person work. Luke Haines Salutes you. St. Bomber.


Mick McManus/ Les Kellett Wrestle Paintings

Mick McManus - 'New Cross'
Acrylic on canvas. 24x30cm. Painting by Luke Haines. Edition 1 of 1. Signed.
Say it. 'Not a grey hair on his head' Mick McManus of the perma-jet-black-hair-skull-cap. Born in New Cross many years ago hailing from a time when a nick name like 'The Tough Guy From South London' was deemed perfectly acceptable. McManus was one of the first to play fast and loose with the rules and pretty much invented the concept of the man you loved to hate. Look at the  shape of his body, this is the shape that men used to strive for. I have captured this shape in thick blue paint. It should be pointed out that even though Mick McManus (sadly) did not co -write Hawkwinds' 'Silver Machine,' he is still one of the finest men to walk on Englands green pastures.


Les Kellett - ' 'Orrible'

Acrylic on canvas. 24x30cm. Painting by Luke Haines. Edition 1 of 1. Signed.
Les Kellett - in Heaven. 58 years old when he started wrestling, Les Kellett looked like yer grandad with a hangover. Actually your Grandad looked younger. Les brought a mixture of fear and loathing into the ring. Also, the proprietor of one of the worst transport cafes in the North (invoked in the song 'Inside The Restless Mind Of Rollerball Rocco.) Look at his hair - it is silver, it has three dimensions. Silver, silver, and silver. The paint, you see, is globule thick. If you had a magic comb you could rake it through that paint barnet. I mainly worked on this canvas to the marxist drones of 'AMMUSIC 1966'. It seemed appropriate.


Friday, 9 September 2011

New Album Coming Soon

'Nine And A Half Psychedelic Meditations On British Wrestling Of The 1970s And Early '80s'

Friday, 19 August 2011

Moroccan Wild Chicken Stew with Marc McBolan and Brian Jacks

You will need
For the stew:
2 chicken fillets
1 medium sized onion
2 cloves of garlic
chillies (to taste)
Harissa paste
1 tin of peeled plum tomatoes
A dozen or so stoned olives
2 or 3 anchovies
A few pinches of oregano

Stock or stock cube
Juice of 1 lemon
chopped parsley.

Hail Hungry Muthas

It has been a while. Has it not? It has. I have been busy, what with a fucking book out, fucking playing a whole gig, writing a mental show for the Edinburgh festival, recording a fucking concept album about wrestlers and then doing a load of paintings of the fuckers - to be featured in the forthcoming Luke Haines 1978 Grapple Calendar. (I'm not calling any wrestlers a 'fucker' by the way, you don't want to call a wrestler a 'fucker' even an old one, no I am calling the images of wrestlers wot I have painted 'fuckers.' I am not frankly a good painter, but it doesn't matter does it? 'Cos it's all art. Art exploding out of my stupid head straight into your stupid heads.) Yes, friends it is true, with all this fucking shit/productivity I have neglected the Outsider Food Blog. Can it really be two months since the 'the miracle of Dave Brock's face' appeared in a bowl of Rabbit stew? Yes. So to make amends, I hereby promise that this blog will now be a monthly 'happening.' And for August's 'recipe', I shall be cooking - in honour of the inaugural performance at the Edinburgh festival of 'The North Sea Scrolls' -  a dish with a distinct taste of the Highlands. Yes, my fellow gastroheads, the fucking Highlands.

Moroccan Wild Chicken Stew. It's not really Moroccan but it is wild. Actually, I just made this up from some old stuff I had lying around in the cupboard. The Moroccan bit comes from the remnants of some tube of old Harissa that I had lying around. You could make it a bit more authentic I s'pose if you did a massive bong and thought about Brian Jones whilst you were 'working in the fucking kitchen'. The main thing is that it's cheap, healthy and an idiot could make it. Which of course is exactly what will be happening a few paragraphs down. It goes without saying that you will definitely score with a lady when you rustle this muthafucka up. Before we start our 'work in the fucking kitchen,' We need to select the right sounds to cook to. Something with a Scottish flavour of course.

Marc Bolan. Marc Bolan was born Marc McBolan in Dumfries at some point in the 20th Century. We know this because he wrote a song about it called '20th Century Boy'. Careful attention to this song indicates that McBolan was a boy in the 20th Century, this means he could only have been born in the 20th Century. Unless he was born at the end of the 19th Century, then he could have been a boy in the very early part of the 20th Century, in which case he would have been about 80 when he died in 1977. I'm pretty sure he wasn't. Anyway, at some point in the 20th Century - fuck knows when - McBolan changed his name to Marc Bolan and had a load of hits with T.Rex. But before that, he called his group 'Tyrannosaurus Rex' - that's what we're going to listen to whilst we cook. 'Unicorn' by Tyrannosaurus Rex. Jeez, that was hard work.

 A small Christ with tin foil wings flaps uselessly and laughs at your so called kitchen units.  Fucking cook. Cook now. Fucking cook. Do it. Cook. Let 'the work in the kitchen' begin. Anchovies, God's second greatest creation. When God invented the anchovy he wasn't talkin' 'bout no picnic in the Goddamn daisies. Hell no. Heat a little olive oil in a large pan and drop in a few anchovies. Remember the anchovies won't make the stew taste fishy, they will just add a rustic saltiness into the brew. Now as the anchovies gently cook and dissolve you can get to slicing up a medium sized onion. Note; I said slice not chop. Slice not chop. Right. On. Good you've sliced the onion now add it to the pan along with a few cloves of crushed garlic and a chopped chilli. It's all cooking the fuck along now. Erm. You've now got time to prepare some couscous. Boil some water. Add a stock cube to the water, stir, and then pour the disgusting stock cube water into a bowl. I know, I know. I am using a stock cube. Stock cubes are shit. They are a poor substitute for actual stock. I've experimented a bit with stock, but frankly what with all the fucking crap I'm juggling I haven't got time to stand staring at a pot of boiling bones for hours on end. So a stock cube it is. Now tip some dry couscous into the stock cube water and hope for the best. You can leave the couscous to absorb the water for around 20 minutes. Time to dice some chicken fillets the fuck up and seal them in the pan with the onions. Now, just brown the meat for a few minutes and then add a tin of peeled tomatoes. Once the stew is cooking, you can squeeze in a teaspoon of Harissa and chuck in a dozen or so stoned olives. i.e olives that have had too much of that fucking bong. Now the secret ingredient to achieve that true flavour of the Highlands: a few good pinches of Oregano. Allright, it's all happening now, you're just waiting it out for a 30 minute reduction on the stew. Time to listen to a bit of 'Unicorn' by Tyrannosaurus Rex.

'Unicorn' then. It's quite difficult to imagine where Bolan's head was at in 1969, and even stranger to think that in just two years time he would be at the top of the charts for six weeks having gone teeny bop nuclear with 'Hot Love.' There's nothing in British rock that sounds remotely like 'Unicorn' (er, apart from the first two 'Rex albums). Neither folk nor psyche, ' Unicorn' exists in a slightly foggy, hobbit world of its own. As a 12 year old, I had a dark secret that I carefully guarded from the Specials and Jam loving kids in the playground. My secret was that 'Unicorn' was my favourite album. I'd remembered watching the 'Marc' TV show when I came home from school, I also had an older cousin who had been a massive 'Rex fan, to the point that he had taken his displeasure out on the 'Tanx' LP by shooting it to bits with an airgun. Wow, it's just occurred to me that a boy shooting 'Tanx' with an airgun is a fabulously symbolic 'Sevs image. Of something.

Just as Oregano and some old Harissa are the secret weapon of this Wild Moroccan Chicken Stew. The secret weapon of 'Unicorn' is Bolan's sidekick Steve 'Peregrin' Took. By the time of 'Unicorn' Took had perfected his bongo clatter, chanting and array of feral animal shrieks. Bolan and Took parted company shortly after 'Unicorn.' Steve Took disappeared into the murky Ladroke Grove underground scene, sporadically recording his own songs with the excellent Larry Wallis, in Shagrat. None of these Shagrat recordings made it out into the world during Took's life. You can get them now, and you should, they're demonic and pretty great. I think I bought 'Unicorn' in early 1980, as part of a reissue twofer with the also classic 'A Beard Of Stars' (Bolan was always in better form with the less extravagant titles. 'Tanx' not withstanding). Steve Took died in October 1980 when he choked on a cocktail cherry, having gone on a binge after receiving a royalty cheque for the reissues of his early Tyrannosaurus Rex recordings. I've often wondered about that one.

Okay, the reduction is done, all you need to do is squeeze a lemon into the couscous and if you have any add some chopped parsley. Now drink a bottle of red wine. Brrring burr brring. Six fucks on a stick, there's someone ringing the door bell. Fuck, It's Brian Jacks, 1970s British Judo champion, and  somewhat bullying presence on TV's 'We Are The Champions.' Jacks, using his finely tuned psychic powers and innate understanding of the mysteries of the East, has detected that there is a heavy vibe of '70s nostalgia, emanating from your horrible house. That or he's maybe caught a whiff of the chicken stew.
   'Hi Brian' you say, as you let the Judo man in.
'Wot, are you - a fucking fairy?" says Brian, pushing past you. 'And drop down on the floor and give me 20.' Jacks is now jogging around your gaffe looking to round up enough people for a traumatic game of British Bulldog. He's out of luck. 'Round about the time I was heavily into 'Unicorn' my parents thought it would be a good idea to enroll me in the local 'Judo Hut'. I achieved the giddy heights of 'yellow belt.' Like most things learned in my formative years it has served me well.
'What the fuck is this? says Brian. 'Nancy boy music,' he sneers at the bleating tones of the 'Rex. I reckon Brian Jacks would be more of a Sensational Alex Harvey Band man.
'Nancy boy music and poofta food,' continues the champion, prodding the couscous. With that, he's off out the door and jogging off to the local gym - or 'judo hut.'

You're on your own, Brian Jacks has gone and you don't need to think about 'Unicorn' anymore. Plate. The. Fuck. Up. Maybe a lady will come 'round. You are on a high probability of scoring with this Wild Moroccan Chicken Stew. Me? I'm off to Edinburgh, and if there is any stew left i'll be sure to put it in a tupperware container and bring it up with me. Maybe i'll share it with you. Bon appetit and chin chin, until next month.



Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Rabbit stew with apparition of Dave Brock

Serves 2.
You will need:

1 medium sized rabbit. (preferably jointed and with liver)
Any old cider.
1 medium sized onion.
2 handfuls of Dawkins mushrooms.
2 carrots.
2 cloves of garlic.
2 stalks of celery.
2 or 3 rashers of bacon (optional - I don't really 'do' bacon, too salty, processed so therefore unhealthy. If you do want to add bacon just chop up and fry with the onion in the stewing pot.)
Thyme. (sprigs or dried)
Coarse Dijon mustard.
Seasoning to taste.

Mashed potato to serve.

Everything's 'underrated' now isn't it? Elvis Presley - used to be the King Of Pop, been dead for about a thousand years, hasn't had a hit in even longer. No one knows who he is. I carried out an experiment recently where I handed out pictures of 'Elvis' to total strangers on the street. Not one of the ten thousand people I spoke to recognised the former 'King of Pop.' So yeah, Elvis, totally underrated. I'll tell you what else is 'underrated' apart from Elvis, Stereolab, and Radiohead: Rabbit stew. Actually Rabbit isn't 'underrated' at all, rabbit is probably appreciated about as much as it deserves. It's all right, it's just not as nice as fillet steak. So, fucking rabbit stew. First things first. Off you go down to the bottom of the garden, to the wabbit hutch, where your five year old daughter's beloved bunny wunny lives. Sorry Mr Flopsy Mopsy, but you had it coming.

Of course, you don't really need to kill the pet bunny wunny. What you need to do is go to the butcher. The butcher will sell you a rabbit for around a fiver, if you're lucky, the rabbit will be dead and jointed (i.e cut into five pieces) If you're less lucky the rabbit will be dead but not jointed, in which case you'll have to cut it up yourself. This isn't too bad but there will be a fair bit of blood, and you will look like a murderer. Incidentally, if you do have a five year old daughter you may not want to tell her that you are cooking rabbit stew. Five year olds think that rabbits are actually wabbits. Some grown ups think that rabbits are wabbits as well. Anyway, you may think that you are being terribly responsible in telling your children where meat 'really comes from,' but actually you're not, you are just on the fast track to unleashing a biblical flood of tears and you will end up eating fish fucking fingers. Okay, before you cook anything, you need to pluck out the rabbits liver and kidneys, fuck knows whereabouts the rabbits kidneys and liver actually are within the dead rabbit, just have a rummage around and you'll find them. They're the things that look like kidneys and liver. Got 'em? Nice one. Chuck the kidneys in the bin, along with anything else you have of value, and set the liver aside, erm Clyde.

Stews are, by nature, epic. So you need to be listening to something truly epic whilst you stew the fuck up. Hawkwind's 'Space Ritual'  should cover it. On its original release 'Space Ritual' was advertised as '90 minutes of Brain Damage.' Luckily, you've got the re-release double CD which should have about '2 and a half hours of Brain Damage' on it. The perfect amount of time - measured in 'brain damage' - to stew a fucking rabbit. Christ's chopper! Let's cook.

Slice up the onion, the celery, carrots, a bit of garlic, and the mushrooms. Now, if you we're making this stew for Hawkwind (underrated), as opposed to just grooving to Hawkwind whilst you heat shit up, then it would be better if you used magic mushrooms. Sadly these mushrooms are not magic. They are just some tired old mushrooms that you bought from the Costcutter. Anything but magic in fact. You see these mushrooms are Dawkins mushrooms. They are the enemy of anything poetic, they are rationalist mushrooms, not only do these Dawkins mushrooms know that God doesn't exist, they are also happy about it. Worse still, these mushrooms have never listened to Hawkwind before. These Dawkins mushrooms are awful. Oh. Now cook the Dawkins mushrooms, celery, onion, carrots and garlic in a little virgin oil  in a heavy bottomed stewing pot for about 12 minutes. Towards the end of this process chuck in a good handful of thyme. Shall I tell you what's happening now? Dave Brock is yowling out the 'lyric' to 'Lord Of Light.' That, my friends, is what the fuck is happening now. Brown the fucking rabbit. Oh God that sounds bad. It sounds like some sort of H Block dirty protest on the rabbit. Don't carry out a dirty protest against the rabbit. Just put the five pieces of meat into a separate pan (separate from the Dawkins mushrooms and other bits and bobs) cover in a little flour, and lightly fry on each side until brown. Thus 'sealing' the flavour of the meat. Oh yes. Once the bunny has browned remove it from the pan and place it on top of the Dawkins mushrooms and the other shit.

It's time to de-glaze. Let the de-glazing begin. Pour a little cider over the the rabbit pan, and turn the heat way up, once the cider is bubbling excitably, you can tip it over the rabbit, the Dawkins mushrooms and whatever else you've manage to accumulate in the fucking stewing pot. Now pour enough cider over the meat to almost cover it. Cover the stew with a lid and cook on a low heat. Only come back into the kitchen when 'Orgone Accumulator' starts blasting out. If you have any cider left don't drink it. Remember cider is not an adult's drink. It is a drink for children and tramps. So, if you have a child - give them the cider. If you have a tramp give it to him.

Okay, we're about 90 minutes into this stew which means that it's time to start fucking about with food again. More importantly it also means we've reached the Bob Calvert 'Orgone Accumulator,' section of 'Space Ritual.' I love the classic UA period of Hawkwind, (underrated) but I love the Calvert/Brock led 'Quark, Strangeness and Charm,' late seventies period even more. (underrated) Around the time of 'Space Ritual,' space poet and fighter pilot enthusiast Bob Calvert, also recorded a solo masterpiece: 'Captain Lockheed And The Starfighters', a concept album based upon the true story of how after WW11 the American Military deliberately sold defective supersonic aircraft to the West German Government, featuring 'space rock' and spoken word skits from Calvert, Viv Stanshall, Lemmy, most of Hawkwind, Arthur Brown - oh and Eno. (overrated) We live in paltry times boys and girls, paltry times.

Fuck! Shit! Hells oily eggs and Dad's gizzards. There's a rabbit liver on the loose in this goddamn hoose. Er. Remember the liver wot you carefully extracted earlier, well now it's time to 'joosh' it the fuck up. Chuck the organ ( or orgone) into a food processor along with two tablespoons of coarse Dijon mustard and blitz. Now, to pack a punch add the blitzed up liver to the stew. Leave the whole fucking shebang cooking on a low, low heat for another hour, or until you hear 'You Shouldn't Do That' bursting out of your kitchen at the end of CD2 of 'Space Ritual.'

If Hawkwind are saying 'You Shouldn't Do That.' I'd listen to them, cos whatever you're doing must be pretty bad if Hawkwind are telling you to stop doing it. The stew is done, so is 'The Space Ritual.' You should definitely try rabbit stew at least once, even though you probably won't score with a lady with this recipe (if you do then she's a keeper) and if you haven't heard 'Space Ritual' you should give that a go too. Okay, Plate. The. Fuck. Up. Hang on, what's this appearing before me, perhaps all that Hawkwind exposure has had a positive effect on the Dawkins mushrooms, what is this apparition before mine eyes? as I lean over the stew I am sure I can see the image of a face forming in the broth. The face of a man with long hair and a beard. Is it Christ? No it is not. It is the face of Dave Brock. Oh yeah, serve with mashed potato. Bon Appetit.



                                           Can you see this man's face (Dave Brock below) in
                                           the rabbit stew? (above) I can.

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Refried Beans For Paul Weller

A "mod" target

You will need:

For the refried beans,
1 tin of kidney beans in water
1 large onion
1 clove of garlic
1 mild green chilli
Olive oil

For the salsa,
1 tin of peeled tomatoes
1 small onion
1 birds eye chilli
1 chicken/vegetable stock cube
squeeze of lemon juice
twist of black pepper
pinch of sugar

For the rice,
some rice

So we've just come out of glut of Bank Holidays, bad news for me - can't stand the amateurs clogging up my local parks and alehouses. But for you, for you hungry modernist, the bank holiday is a chance to hang with your all time idol of pop. Ding fucking dong, who's that at the door dad? It's only Paul Weller. That's who. Right. The. Fuck. On.

Yep, the man known as the undisputed 'Best Mod in Britain' (Paul Weller) is standing outside your front door, and he wants to take you down to Brighton for a Bank Holiday ruck on the seafront and then on to an all nighter at some Locarno. Get your Parka on fucker, gulp down a load of purple hearts, take the Secret Affair album off the dansette, and jump astride your Vespa - you do not want to keep the 'Best Mod in Britain' waiting. You do not want to do that.

48 hours later, and you're back at your awful home, you wave good bye to your new pals:
'Bye bye Phil Daniels and Leslie Ash, Bye Bye Bruce and Rick' you say sadly. Bruce Foxton and Rick Foxton, the Style Council's highly volatile identical twin sibling rhythm section, roar off on their stupid motorbikes. As does Phil Daniels and Leslie Ash. It's been a long weekend, what with all that fighting on the seafront, all that frothy coffee guzzling and all that frugging to the Shirelles and the Merton Parkas. But it's not over yet. Paul Weller wants to hang out with you a bit more, and he wants you to make him one of his favourite meals: Refried Beans with Salsa, and he wants you to serve it up to him so it looks like a 'mod target'. Christ's teeth - we got there in the end.

The reason for the previous three paragraphs of (frankly) utter doggerel is that my wife noticed that when you serve up this sodding recipe - refried beans, salsa, and plain basmati rice - on a blue rimmed plate, it can look very much (a bit) like a 'mod target'. I've been cooking this for about 20 years. I nicked it from a recipe book for fake Mexican food, written by a fake Mexican lady in Asda in Southgate, North London. I couldn't afford the recipe book as I was on the dole at the time, so I committed the instructions to my young, young beautiful mind. Right on Benson, let's do it.

First off, finely chop up the small onion and gently fry it in olive oil until opaque in a large pan. Whilst the onion solemnly does its very cool 'frying' thang, you can open up a can of  tomatoes and decant them into a smallish saucepan, turn up the heat and gently, gently cook. While all this 'stuff' is going on  crumble a stock cube into the tomatoes. Everyone laughs at stock cubes, including me. This is because they are shit. It doesn't matter, it's only cooking, and this dish is not exactly fine dining. It really isn't. Now, your finely chopped onion should be cooked, so add it to the tomato mess. Slice up a birds eye chilli and bung that in as well. A pinch of sugar, a dash of lemon, a twist of pepper and your tomato salsa is done. All it has to do now is reduce, Bruce.

Paul Weller is busying himself in your front room by laughing at your record collection,
"What the fuck's this?" says Britains Best Mod, as he pulls out a Sonic Youth album. "Not as fucking clever as they fink," says Paul. I have to admit he's got a point. Paul Weller is looking for some Traffic LPs. He won't find any. You need to sort out some sounds in the kitchen. Probably some 'hard bop.' Paul would approve of that. Maybe.

 Now that you've got Ornette Coleman freaking the fuck out on his bugle you need to make the refried beans. Easy – roughly chop up the large onion and the garlic and fry for about 10 minutes in the large pan, once the onion is cooked you can chuck the kidney beans in (including the water from the can) with the cooked onions, add in a mild chilli if you fancy and cook over a medium heat for around forty minutes. After about half an hour  the kidney beans should have softened up and the water will have 'magically' vanished. There is some science going on here, but I don't believe in science - science is shit. 'Science' is the pastime of warlocks. I reckon the water has just gone into space or something. Now, when you've stopped wondering about where the water's gone it's time to mash up the kidney beans and onions. You will know when you've mashed them enough because they will look like refried beans. Yeah? Ok. Plate. The. Fuck. Up.

It's time to carefully arrange your food in the shape of a 'mod target.' For this you will need a blue plate, now just plonk the food on the plate in the same way I have in the photograph that I have kindly provided at the top of this fucking blog. Oh, you need to serve the food with some fucking rice. You know how to cook rice, right? Ok, it's the moment of truth, time to present your 'Modernist Refried Beans' to Paul, who's angrily awaiting his dinner in the other room. Britain's Best Mod turns off the Small Faces compilation tape he's been listening to and walks over to the table where his food awaits him. He looks at the food for about 5 seconds then walks away from the table.
'Twat,' says Paul Weller as he walks out of your house and gets on his Vespa. The Vespa that will take him back to Woking. Oh well.

 'Mod targets,' and Paul Weller notwithstanding, you really should try making this. It's cheap, it's healthy, and although it looks horrible in the photograph, it actually tastes damn good. You can also garnish with some crumbled cheddar cheese and celery. I don't know what the fuck you'd drink with this. Perhaps as you're coming down from a 'weekender' you could serve it with some Mandrax. Does any body still do 'mandies'? If so, can I have some? Bon Appetite.



Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Ackee and Saltfish (Version)

Above, ackee and saltfish (version)

You will need:

2 smoked haddock fillets
1 tin of ackee
1 medium onion
1 small/medium red pepper
small finger of ginger
1 clove of garlic
1 scotch bonnet chilli pepper
sprigs of fresh thyme or good manly pinch of dried thyme
half a tablespoon of Encona chilli sauce
table spoon/good squirt of tomato ketchup.

1 large blackened plantain.

serves 2

(pictured - Ackee and Saltfish (version) with 'rice and peas.' I didn't have a plantain.

Dinner parties. By Christ they're awful. Just think of the fun you are missing getting apocalyptically drunk on your own, smashing stuff up and blacking out. Instead some fuckhead has had the temerity to invite you to their dinner party. The thing with dinner parties is that people always invite people who don't know each other. The people you don't know have a name - no, i'm not talking about their actual names, usually names like Ollie, and Dom - the name for people you don't know is 'strangers.' My old mum had a saying about strangers: "Monday's stranger - Tuesday's friend - Wednesday's sworn enemy for life." Pretty soon these fucking 'Strangers' will try and engage you in conversation.
Ollie. "Hi, my name's Ollie, how do you know Dom? Have you met my partner Ross?" and so it goes on. When 'The Strangers' are not saying retarded stuff like 'Cheese! It's just like drugs, isn't it?' They will relentlessly pump you for information, until they finally ask you the dreaded 'What do you do?' Luckily, explaining that you are a musician who doesn't consider himself to be a musician and who doesn't have hit records, closes the conversation down pretty damned quick, Mick. (Maybe 'The Strangers' just think I'm a busker - perhaps I am a busker.)
Oh, on the subject of closing down a conversation, here are a few handy hints on what you can do if you get cold-called on the blower.  a) Tell the cold caller that you are planning on killing yourself later on in the day, b) Ask the cold caller if they mind if you take your clothes off whilst they are talking to you. The only good thing to have come out of any sodding dinner party that has had the misfortune to have me as a guest is the knowledge that it is possible to make Ackee and Saltfish at home that can taste better than it does in a restaurant.

Frankly this recipe is a bit inauthentic. I prefer ackee and saltfish using smoked haddock rather than saltfish. I've got a lot of fucking albums to make, a lot of godamn books to write and who knows what other shit I've got to fling in the face of the public before my number's up - and saltfish, well it's just too, er, salty, Moulty. Even if you leave it in water over night - and double boil it - that saltfish is gonna play hardball with your blood pressure. Besides, having tried both saltfish and smoked haddock in this recipe, I prefer the latter. Think of this recipe as The Clash's musical bricklaying cover of 'Police and Thieves' as opposed to Junior Murvin's transcendental hypnotic original. Oh.

You will of course need a sound system in your kitchen to play your authentic roots rock rebel dub plates. So it's a toss up betweens 10cc's 'Bloody Tourists,' or Radio 4, where you can listen to a comedy that has people on who are just like people you would meet at a dinner party.  Marcus Brigstock -  yes that's his name. They call him Marcus Brigstock. 10cc it is then. Let's cook.

Heat up a little olive oil in a large pan, chop up the onions, the garlic, and a good sized knob of ginger. Fish is a cunt for ginger. Turn up to a medium heat and add the chopped red pepper and maybe a side or two of the scotch bonnet chilli - you don't need me to tell you that scotch bonnet chilli is a muthafucka. So look the fuck out. Now get the fish into the oven at 180 for about 7 minutes, you want the fish to be a little under done. Plantain is a fine accompaniment to ackee, ideally get yourself a ripe (i.e blackened) one, heat up a decent amount of oil in a heavy bottomed pan, and chop up the plantain, put the chopped up big black banana to one side as the oil heats up. Now get the fish out of the oven, and hide it. That was a joke - you don't need to hide the fucking fish, you just need to skin the fucking fish. Good, it's all working out well. If you were going to panic, now would be the time to panic. It's ok, you don't need to panic.

Fuck! fuck, boiling bastards, Witches, howling demons of the spitting fucking oil, wailing women, and fucking dogs. Secret ingredient time. This will be the making of your ackee and saltfish (version) - a capful of Encona Hot chilli sauce, a squirt of tomato ketchup and a good shake of thyme go into the pan of onions and peppers. Thyme, thyme running and passing, you can't scrimp on the thyme. Now flake the fish into the mix and stir. It's ackee time. Ackee is the only expensive part of this dish, a small tin will set you back around £3.00, I'd imagine that outside of major cities it's pretty hard to come by. I would definitely imagine this. Drain the ackee and add it to the fish and onions and whatever the fuck else I said to put in that pan. Now stir at a medium heat for a few minutes. Plantain time. Chuck the chopped up plantain into the other pan of hot oil, stir at a high heat for a few minutes until soft and golden brown. If you cook for too long at a low heat the plantain will go hard. There is a 'scientific' reason for this but I'm not really interested.

Plate. The. Fuck. Up. You will definitely score with a lady if you cook this. So put on some alluring scent and fix up a couple of martinis. Chin chin and bon appetite.



Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Spaghetti Alla Putanesca & 2 Bottles of Red Wine

[Above: sauce 15 minutes into reduction.]
You will need:

1 tin of anchovies
2 cloves of garlic
Birds eye chillies, red or green
About a dozen salty olives (stone in) - Moroccan dry could be good
Olive oil

2 bottles of poor quality red wine

Hail Hungry Muthafuckas,

I am about to share with you some (not very) secret knowledge. You will thank me forever. This really is the best pasta dish you can make, and it will freak your mind the fuck out. It is cheap, it is possibly a bit nutritional and most importantly if you cook this - and you fucking cook it right - you will definitely score with a lady, or if you are a lady - a man (or another lady) - or if you are a man another man, or perhaps a lady and a man. In a jacuzzi.

So first: your look. I like to wear black from head to toe when I start fucking about with pasta dishes. A man in black and spaghetti. Maybe a little music, perhaps some David Crosby. Probably not. Let's cook.

Firstly, heat up some olive oil in a large pan, now finely chop up 2 cloves of garlic and 2 birds eye chillies and chuck 'em in the oil. It is time for the secret ingredient - anchovies. God was playing fucking hardball when he invented the anchovy. They really are the most useful little guys. You can add them to loads of things, a beef stew, roast lamb, and the great thing is they won't make everything taste fishy - just salty. So fear not the anchovy fish pussies, just reach into that tin and grab four of the hairy little scamps and add them to the oil and chillies. Oh God. Once the anchovies have started to dissolve add a glug of red wine. NB The kind of people I really can't stand are the kind of people who have a few unfinished bottles of wine lying around. I am not one of those people. You don't have to be either. This is why you have bought two bottles of wine. Open the first bottle of wine and pour a few glugs in the pan. You can now drink the rest of the first bottle of wine whilst you do the fucking cooking. Have the 2nd bottle after dinner. This might be a good time to send your dining partner out to the shops if they would like a drink. Once the wine is bubbling enthusiastically, add the tinned peeled tomatoes. You now have the makings of a good tomato sauce, just stone a bunch of salty sailor olives and chuck 'em in.

It is now time for the fucking 'reduction.' I recently saw an interview with Kylie Minogue where she mentioned a '20 minute reduction' on a tomato sauce. What she means is cook the sauce over a medium heat until it 'reduces'. All this talk of 20 minute reductions makes me like Kylie more. Though i'd give it about 23 minutes.

The key to Spaghetti Alla Putanesca is simplicity. There are several variations - you can add tuna, capers, and red pepper, but purists usually insist upon the garlic, anchovies, chilli, olives version. The purists are right. You are looking to achieve a 'primordial' holy trinity of rich concentrated tomato, saltiness and chilli heat. The sauce is now bubbling away - drink some fucking wine. Cooking is essentially about chopping stuff up and heating stuff up. As I've said before - to the point where people have said to me, "Actually, you have said that before?" - cooking is not a black art. Now get a pan of water on the boil, take it easy, there's no need to panic.

Fuck, shit, boiling heads, boiling fucking oil. You've now got to make your spaghetti. Actually you don't have to make any spaghetti, and now I'm going to tell you why, because there is another world, far away from the world we live in - the world full of arseholes with superinjunctions, arseholes with superinjunctions who write newspaper columns about arseholes with superinjunctions, and arseholes writing stupid food blogs - yes, this is a world where people do useful stuff, a world of doctors, nurses, and most importantly- spaghetti makers. The spaghetti makers get the fucking spaghetti into the shops, to feed the doctors and nurses and the arseholes with superinjunctions, and of course, you. NEVER MAKE YOUR OWN PASTA.

Once the spaghetti is cooked - I prefer al dente - drain and douse liberally with olive oil, then plonk the reduced sauce on top just like Kylie does. Now finish off the first bottle of red wine and get to work on the second. Chin, chin, and bon appetite.


Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Spicy Kedgeree with Dirty Martini

You will need:

2 small fillets smoked haddock
1 medium onion
2 eggs
1 fresh birds eye chilli
2 cups white basmati rice
1 lemon
knob of ginger
coriander seeds
cumin seeds
madras curry powder
curry leaves (optional)

Good vodka
Good dry martini mixer
Green olives

We all know that Kedgeree was once a popular colonial breakfast dish. I have tried many variations of traditional kedgeree - lightly spiced, with lashings of tomato ketchup etc - but i've found them all to be lacking. This, is a much spicier ( hot wired if you like) version of the old classic, and it's fairly healthy - and this is something we shall be paying special attention to on this food blog. I like to keep my eye on how much  cholestrol is in my food, I have a lot of records to make, a lot of books to write, and God knows what other shit to fling out there. I need to be around for a while.

Before we get into the cooking and what-not, we need to think about a good cooking look. I like to wear a towelling dressing gown and vintage flared cords (wranger boot cut) I also like to cook bare foot. I'm sure many other cooks would think this a safety issue what with all the fucking shit flying around in the kitchen, but I disagree. Barefoot puts me at one with my fucking kitchen. Right, let's cook.

Fish first: smoked haddock is best. I know there's been a recent trend towards Coley and Pollock - for various reasons that we need not give a shit about - but I'm not having it. Coley and Pollock are cat food dude, and besides if you're going to try to score with a lady, you don't want to be serving her fucking Pollock do you.
   "Whatchya cooking me tonight loverboy?"
"Pollock." You see what I mean. So haddock it is. I'm a big fan of frozen haddock, it's cheap, (it's only fucking kedgeree and it's only fucking cooking for christ sake) we don't need to get all Rick Stein about it.

Timing, is everything when you're making Kedgeree. First, take the fish out of the freezer and put it in a bowl of cold water for around half an hour - now watch the fucker defrost. Actually don't watch the fucker defrost - get on with boiling a couple of eggs. Cholestrol-wise the jury is out on eggs. I don't fucking know, one option is to buy eggs with extra omega in them. Good for the ticker. On a recent episode of what is laughingly called 'Masterchief' the Australian judge castigated some hapless fucker for hard boiling an egg, as he attempted to whip up a frankly farcical 'Masterchief' appropriation of Kedgeree. The Australian wanted the egg to be running all over the rice. I cannot overstate how wrong this is. When you make Kedgeree you do not want eggs running all over the place fucking shop willy nilly. As your eggs are boiling take your now defrosted fishies out of the cold water and score them lightly with a knife, now gently massage some madras curry powder into the fish. Once again, no need to get all Rick Stein 'fishrotic' about this. It's just some old curry powder and a bit of old fish. When you've finished massaging, put the fish in the oven 180 c for around 7 minutes. Do not over cook the fish. Fish is fucked if it is over cooked. Time to chop up the onion, the ginger and the chilli, in they go, into the (large) frying pan, where they will be fried in a little olive oil for 12 minutes at a medium heat. I'm a stickler for the 12 minutes 'onion fry off.' Keep moving that onion around in the pan, I don't wanna hear about no onions sticking to the pan or getting 'Burnt.'

Fuck. Get the rice on - hopefully you've had a pan of water on the go as you've been doing all this other shit. You have? good. In goes the rice along with a tablespoon full of turmeric and a few fucking cloves. Now watch the rice boil for 10 - 12 minutes. Ye Gods! The fucking fish - stop watching the fucking rice boil and get the fucking fish out of the oven. If the fish has got a skin, then remove the skin. If the fish hasn't got a skin then you need to put a skin on it. Actually, only one of these statement is true. When you've decided which one, put the fish aside.

Spice time. Bung the spices in with the onion, if you need to add a little more oil then do so. We don't want anything drying the fuck up. It should be noted that you do not need to cook any of this recipe at a particularly high heat. Don't go mad dad. Now, peel those eggs. I hope for your sake that they are not runny. Chuck the eggs in with the onion and spices. Your rice must now be done, drain it and add to the pan, now break the fish into flakes and stir in with the eggs and onion. During the spice stage, you could add curry leaves into the mix. Curry leaves are aromatic, and as far as I can tell taste of fuck all. I could be wrong though, as my pallet is completely shot through years of boozing and eating really fucking hot food.

Okay you're almost done, you just need to squeeze in the juice of one lemon and stir until any residual liquid has been absorbed. Congratulations, it's time to 'plate up.' So, let's 'plate' the fuck 'up.' You could also serve this Kedgeree with a 'sad' salad. We'll look at the 'sad salad on another occasion.

Ding dong, it's fucking time for drinkies. One advantage with this Kedgeree recipe is that it works very well with a martini. So, seconds out, here's how you make a Dirty Martini. You'll need a good smooth Vodka, i'm afraid that you'll need at the very least an Absolute or Smirnoff. That cheap jack vodka like Glenns or what have you is fine for getting smashed on a Monday morning but this is a Goddamn Martini. So, One shot of vodka, to two shots of good dry martini mixer. Measure the shots properly - it makes all the difference. And on to the last stage: the olive, preferably a green olive with stone in. (the olive in the photo is a black calamata and it doesn't really work). The olive must be in brine, when you spoon the olive out of the jar make sure you scoop out a litte brine. This is a 'dirty' olive, plonk it and the brine into your drink. You now have a dirty martini to go with your spicy kedgeree. Chin chin, and bon appetite.

Yours, LH