11.7.2021 – aubergine labneh

aubergine labneh
courgettes freekeh tahini
salsify trompett

It is the Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw, a fugitive today from the PC police I am sure, who famously said that Great Britain and the United States were, “two nations divided by a common language.”

On Mr. Shaw I have always wondered about his name.

I have so often heard him referred to as Bernard Shaw that I came to beleive that he had one of those hypnnated names, thusly George Bernard-Shaw.

Checking the Wikipedia this morning, come to learn, he was known as Bernard Shaw, “at his insistence”.

So there it is.

Now if I could take the time to look Ralph Vaughn Williams (Rafe?? Vaughn-Williams), BUT I DIGRESS.

Also, going online this morning I see that there is some question of attribution of the quote with some folks leaning towards Oscar Wilde and some to Winston Churchill.

I never had any doubt.

I knew it was George Bernard Shaw because George C. Scott, in the title role, in the movie, Patton, quotes BGS.

I am sure you all know the scene.

The old British lady’s lap dog scares Patton’s pit bull, Willie.

I endorse the sentiment that we here in the States and the Brits both speak English of a sort.

Of a sort.

I knew a news director who always demanded that when we showed video of Prince Charles, he should be closed captioned.

But today I want to expand the thought.

Not only separated by a common language but by a common desire to eat.

Readers of this blog will not be surprised when on a Sunday Morning I again turn to one of my weekend checkmarks of reading the Guardian’s Blind Date feature.

Two people are set up on a Blind Date at a London Restaurant and then fill out a questionaries’ on their experience.

It is a harmless bit of fun in a dark world.

Along with a review of the date is a link to the Restaurant where the couple met.

It is worth the click to check out the restaurant and look at a London menu.


Today’s blind date met a a place called Sidechick.

It’s a chicken place.

Too bad one of today’s daters was vegetarian.

But not too worry as Sidechick’s website states, “We specialise in the juiciest, most delicious cuts of Roast Chicken & freshly cooked vegetables.”

Pretty safe here.

No worries.

Chicken and veggies.

Could there be anything easier?

I mean lets call the Colonel!

But keep reading the menu.

Under starters you could order bitter leaves.

Bitter leaves with ricotta, pickled pumpkin, walnuts!

NUMMIE NUMMIE as my grandson Jaxon might say.

Lets order up some bitter leaves MOM!

Then there is the chicken.

Half or whole chicken with choice of marinade.

Chimichurri, Piri Piri or Za’atar.


Finger lickin good!

And finally, the vegetables.

The vegetable dishes at Sidechicks are a mix of Aubergine, tomato compote, labneh, breadcrumbs, pecorino cheese, Pearl barley, wild mushroom, bone marrow, Grilled celeriac, salsify, trompette, kale, Braised courgettes, freekeh and tahini.

Words or foods I recognize seem to jump out of this list as if they were written in neon.

Other words or foods have the aura of being written on a chalk board.

Some faux fancy faux food designed to make me realize how un-faux I am.

I know I know, you say tomato I say tomato.

It brings to mind the old Andy Griffith Show episode where Deputy Barney Fife is mystifeid by a menu so he just points at various items.

The gag is revealed when he is brought a plate of snails.

The thing is Ol ‘Barn was looking at a menu in French.

This menu is in English.

I might order braised courgettes with freekeh and tahini just because it would be so much fun just to say that out loud in a restaurant.

Ahhhhhhhhh well, we all got to eat.

I remember an interview with the wonderful Julia Child.

She was asked, “Do you ever go out and just get a Big Mac?”

Ms. Child hesitated and smiled, tucked in her chin and said in that marvelous accent that can only be described as Julia Child’s accent, “Well … I prefer the Quarter Pounder.”

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