Thursday, 28 August 2008

in a split-level city.

The Rundown:
Thursday: Talk on genetic research
Friday: supermarket shopping, afternoon with E/J/G, David O'Doherty evening
Saturday: berry picking, Valvona & Crolla afternoon tea, picnic dinner, One From The Heart
Sunday: Adelaide breakfast, On the Waterfront, Adam Page Solo, Pig Island, crumble
Monday: Frank Woodley, trifle
Tuesday: climbed the Scott monument,
Wednesday: Walked the city: view from Calton Hill, Carlton Old Burial Ground, lunch at Peter's Yard, Greyfriar's Kirkyard, shopping on the West Bow/Victoria St/Cockburn St, throug the old town, fudge, Dunbar's Close garden, down the high street, the Heart of the Midlothian, St Giles Cathedral, outside of the castle, dinner with C&K

The Commentary:

Paul Simon sings that in South Africa he sees angels in the architecture: in Edinburgh I see skeletons. Not literally, but in the old, blackened stone buildings, you can see the bones holding them up. Despite this it feels like a strong place: I've never been somewhere where the city seems so violently forced upon the nature that surrounds it. If you look out from many places in the city, you look directly into wild forest, or the sea, or even craggy cliff faces. Despite its less refined character though, and the fact that it's summer but apparently no one remembered to tell the weather that, Edinburgh reminds me of Adelaide; it's small, easy to walk, there are lots of parks, the people are friendly, the food is good. And they also have a local beverage that outsells Coke. I like it here. The festival brings the city alive, but also crams it full of tourists.The men actually do wear kilts here as a regular wardrobe item: a flash of wind on the North Bridge reveals an old man's tightie whities. So I guess that answers the perennial question of what real Scotsmen wear under their Kilts. You heard it here first.

Trifle Recipe
With some of the horde from the berry picking, I made a trifle. Since we haven't had a recipe here for a long time, and since my friend the ex-professional (michelin star restaurant) pastry chef gave it the thumbs up (wooohoo!!! highlight of my year!!!), and since it seems to be different than the way other people do it (who knew?): here it is. Although it's not so much a recipe as fuzzy guidelines based on what my Nanna used to do...

Cake: I used a bought flan base. Something sweet and spongey should do the trick though. Put this in the bottom of a big glass bowl and soak with something sweet and alcoholic. I used a white dessert wine, and the syrup from the pears. Don't be stingy.

Custard: You could make your own, but I am very lazy and bought some. It was a good one though and had little vanilla seeds in it. Pour this over the cake.

Fruit: I skinned and sliced some pears and poached them with a little sugar, and also used freshly picked blackberries. Layer these over the custard.

Jelly: I used blackcurrant, but you basically want something red/purple/pink I think. Make it the day before and then break it up a bit and put it on top of the fruit.

Cream: Get some kind of whipable cream and whip it with a little sugar and vanilla essence. Don't whip it too much - you want stiff but maleable peaks, not total solidity. Put this over the jelly. Decorate with a bit more fruit.

And there you have it: not rocket surgery.


David said...

Seems as if you really enjoyed your trip to Edinburgh, and as you say the men there really do wear kilts.

As for what real Scotsmen wear under their kilts, you might want to take a look at my site,
for the real, real answer.

Kind Regards, David.

Emily said...

Hi Emily,
It was nice to meet you in Edinburgh - glad you enjoyed it. I agree that Edinburgh is a lot like Adelaide - that's why I like it so much. I like reading your blog! Happy travelling!
Emily H-J

Hannah said...

Hehe, you finally check out Adam Page Solo but on the other side of the world! PS Thanks heaps for the lovely postcards.