Welcome to my world!

The reflections and comments of a resident in Southsea, Portsmouth, England.

Sunday, 17 May 2015

Cooking for me is about practice

In my kitchen, magic happens. You have seen the photos and some of your have tasted the results.

It's not overnight that I become good at cooking. It's the results of years of trying out dishes and being adventurous. If I had not been adventurous, then I won't be as good as I am today. It's as simple as that.

The first time I fried a fish, I hacked it to pieces from turning it over and over. My mother taught me to be patient and only turning the fish once and to handle the food ever so gently; but with decisive actions.

Cooking for me is about practice and perfecting a dish. It is also about adapting to things such as a busy time table, a friend's gluten intolerance, or what's in season. I love the challenge of cooking a vegetarian meal, as well as a new type of fish, or cut of meat. Sometimes it is about trying out an ingredient.

So if you want to be good at anything, try and try again!

(the picture above is my tried and tested, and often varied 'bacon pasta')

Friday, 15 May 2015

What's On in May

Here's a copy of my article that appears in this month's Portsmouth View:
Thinking of May always brings up images of the Maypole and country fete. St Mary’s Church May Fayre is one of my favourites.

May is a good time to check out the farmers market offering local produce in abundance. In Southsea we are fortunate to have the monthly market on Palmerston Road.

The farmers markets are complimented by the Love Southsea Markets which features many local crafts and artists. Have you tried a bar of ‘lemon soul’ soap by Southsea Bathing Hut?

When the farmers market is not here, visit the Southsea Greenhouse located near Canoe Lake. It is a community garden built on a piece of derelict land. You can volunteer to do gardening activities such as planting, digging or pottering. You can also donate or barter produce from your garden with the Southsea Greenhouse.

As the weather becomes warmer, it is also a good month for enjoying the many cafes in Southsea. Sit back, relax, and have a nice cup after you have had a walk along the seafront.

Try some artisan bread at Bread Addiction and check out the new Belgian bar HUIS on Elm Grove. If it is too hot, cool down with some ice-cream from Scoops Gelato.

For four years now the Portsmouth Film Society (PFS) has organised the Portsmouth Green Film Festival. This year’s programme on 13th and 14th May includes an introduction by Professor Lisa Jack to the film Cowspiracy. Professor Jack specialises in research in food supply networks. The festival also brings together local environmental groups such as Greenpeace, Oxfam and Global Justice Portsmouth.

Did you know that Southsea has an archery club? It was founded in 2012 by Sonnie Emeney and Thomas Pickard. Archery is a fun activity any suitable for any age. Find out more from their website www.southseaarcheryclub.com.

The Peter Ashley Activity Centre in Fort Purbrook offers rock climbing and horse riding among the many activities you can do there.

The university year ends this month. For the first time, member of the Music Society will be performing on the Isle of Wight. The concert at St Mildred’s Church, Whippingham, on 30th May will raise funds to heat the church. Queen Victoria used to go there when in residence on the Isle of Wight.

Hopefully I see you at Emma Johnson’s clarinet concert on June 1st at the Guildhall, or at the Portsmouth Festivities later on in that month.