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  • Clare Teal -
    to Padstow After the walk the whole family went out for mum s birthday lunch I was thrilled to discover macchiatos on the menu When 3 pints of milky coffee arrived I politely questioned the authenticity of these imposter machhiatos I pressed the macchiato button on the machine THAT is a macchiato 12 Oct A rhythmical return Every Saturday morning and every Monday evening dad would drop me off outside the gates of Glusburn Institute and I d trudge up the stairs with the overly large red vanity case that mum had picked up somewhere banging against my legs with every step I can remember the exact smell of the building the colour of the walls the noise of the kids and of course the music Once inside the ballroom we d form a line and pay our subs to Joan at the big folding table Someone paid in Spanish pesetas one week we never found out who but anyone with a tan was held under suspicion till their parents could spring them at home time After that I d take off my beloved trainers and replace them with the dreaded golden dancing sandals of shame A year or so earlier aged 8 I d mentioned to mum and dad how I would love to tap dance like Fred Astaire There was obviously some breakdown in communication and the hoofer s shuffle of my dreams was replaced by The Military Two Step Square Tango and Edwardian Gavotte I didn t actually mind the dancing I loved the music and the company and very much enjoyed buying sweets at the interval but could never understand the fascination of those who chose to melt their cola bottles on the radiators instead of eat them Having already been labelled a geek for learning the clarinet and knowing who Glenn Miller was in assembly I was sailing close to the wind and so couldn t tell anyone I was now ballroom dancing twice a week Dad picked me up on Monday nights so providing I got to the car without being spotted I was safe Saturday mornings proved more difficult as after classes I went to spend the rest of the day with my beloved nan who lived just down the lane however a boy in my form lived opposite her house and trying to make that enormous red vanity case unnoticeable on a weekly basis was impossible Last Saturday I headlined Glusburn s first festival My opening lines of the evening Out of politeness I learned ballroom dancing here in this very room for many MANY years only able to stop when the teacher finally informed by parents that I had absolutely no natural rhythm let s hope that doesn t apply to this evening s performance 28 Sep My burgers are fit for a king but beware of the baps LAST night s dinner was a meal of great highs and tremendous lows How wrong can you go with burger and chips Dainty little patties of good quality beef snugly set betwixt the comforting top and bottom of delicate compact and bijou floury baps My biggest mistake was deciding to make said baps myself After my last bread disaster good friend Richard gave me a failsafe just add water kit I added the exact amount required and kneaded for the exact time stated Although it clearly read If making rolls divide the dough into 10 equal portions I being a master baker knew better and whisked my 14 rolls upstairs by the boiler to prove I waited for 30 mins before having a peek Not one of them had risen Against my better judgment I decided to give the lazy blighters a further 30 mins to get their act together and moved them to the naughty step which happened to be in a sunny spot I have no doubt that if thrown with moderate force any one of the tiny yet impossibly heavy granite textured bread grenades could have caused serious harm Thankfully Muddy had thought to buy some spare baps just in case Moving swiftly on to the burgers Playing safe the first lot were solely made of squished beef these puppies were set to be topped with grilled goats cheese The second batch however were based on Jamie s Elvis burgers containing ground beef red chilli red onion chopped tarragon egg bread crumbs Dijon mustard parmesan cheese nutmeg and a bit if black pepper Apparently you don t salt burgers till you cook them as the salt draws out the moisture Considering there were only four of us eating perhaps 16 burgers was a little ambitious We didn t have any oven chips in the freezer and the local fire brigade have banned me from trying to make my own ever again so I went to the local chippy and bought two bags to share Having extensively researched the internet I can reveal a true Elvis burger consists of a beef or pork patty lashings of peanut butter topped with crispy bacon topped with bananas fried in butter and sugar Some recipes include cheese and salad served of course with a Diet Coke 21 Sep Tempo hots up in countdown to drummer s nuptials OUR drummer Benny is in a permanent state of flurry he s getting married in four weeks but still hasn t got his suit sorted I don t know if the nerves are kicking in but he dropped his knife and fork at least three times in Cambridge on Friday and butter fingered a sticky spare rib to the carpet in Leatherhead on Saturday This behaviour is most out of character drummers seldom drop things other than the occasional beat and can multi task like you wouldn t believe For the last 12 months we ve been running a sweepstake as to which of the four Grant Simon Benny and Jimmy would get married first On the afternoon of December 20 last year Benny rang to

    Original URL path: http://www.clareteal.co.uk/index.php/category/clares-blog/page/18/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Clare Teal -
    midweek matinee I thought but apparently it s been pretty much sold out since the start of the run Comedy Of Errors starring Lenny Henry Laura Timmin s mum and SIMON LITTLE runs till April 1st seriously catch it if you can So now having queued for nearly 4 hours to see the Davinci Exhibition and stayed awake throughout an entire Shakespeare play 2012 is already shaping up to be my own personal year of culture Next on the list ballet and opera but not at the same time although 27 Jan Da Vinci I never have been much of an early bird so imagine my surprise to find myself queuing outside London s National Gallery at 8 o clock in the morning Incidentally the doors don t open till 10am and there was already a snaking throng of 300 people politely standing in line When Muddy arrived having parked the car I went off in search of breakfast and returned shortly with two generous cartons of porridge which as the temperature was just above freezing proved most welcome General queue behaviour is fascinating to observe We had been warned by the gallery staff the wait would be approx 3 and half hours Some people pulled funny faces without realising to pass the time others performed their own little get warm dances some crazy people gave up after as long as 2 hours In the final hour one woman for some strange reason suddenly refused to move up and stood stationary for at least 13 minutes and as the gap in front of her increased so did the tempers of the people behind When we eventually got into the gallery at 11 45 we finally managed to buy our tickets to discover the earliest time we could view the exhibition was 4 30pm Who on earth could be worth queuing and hanging around for that amount of time Leonardo da Vinci that s who I don t profess to be an art lover BUT even I could appreciate just what an incredible painter he was We were lucky enough to see the largest collection of his original works ever assembled in one place and my goodness it was worth the wait ingold Da Vinci was a remarkable man a true innovator who introduced the world to a whole new way of capturing images on paper I say paper I couldn t understand why such an incredible artist would use such tiny scraps of funny shaped paper not only that but every inch of it was covered with sketches it took me a while to realise he couldn t exactly pop into Smiths to pick up a ream of A4 Paper was very expensive as were drawing writing implements to be honest they re closer to sticks than anything he d have used today The exhibition runs till 5th February If you get chance wrap up and go witness a few examples of the finest fine art ever daubed on a canvas 27 Jan Boiled Whale 2 After last week s broadband rant I feel it only fair to thank the lovely telecommunications engineer who came out between the hours of 8am and 1pm to fix the fault on the line He was a very nice chap who sorted the problem calmly and efficiently BUT NOW we re having problems with Royal Mai sorry the national delivery service that rhymes with Boiled Whale Three months ago we finally noticed that yet again the volume of mail from our PO Box had come to a shuddering halt Megan opener of brown envelopes and general finance rang them to ascertain what the problem was and to make sure our account hadn t been cancelled again Boiled Whale were utterly oblivious and promised to ring the Bath office immediately Another month passed Megan enquired as to whether we d received the card she sent We hadn t Yes hello it s still no mail here did you ring the Bath office Yes madam we did they told us your account had been cancelled So of course you told them that it shouldn t have been cancelled and reinstated it there and then Er no madam we didn t we assumed you must have rung the Bath office to cancel your account But there is no direct number for the Bath office available to the public anymore is there Er no long pause I ll ring them back now and sort it out December came but Megan s Christmas card didn t and venues were ringing to say their contracts had been returned address un known Hell hath no fury like a Megan scorned Now listen you its still no mail here again again Please tell me you rang the Bath office and everything is sorted Yes madam we did ring the Bath office they told us your account had been cancelled as requested Is there anything else I can help you with You have to laugh Which leads me on to the postie s silent knock I ve been in all day I check the post around 3pm only to find a sorry we missed you card waiting for me on the mat We did knock on the door madam But I live four flights above the front door I didn t hear you Why didn t you ring the bell So if you re a fan of knock knock ginger then get yourself down to boiled whale they ll pay you to play all day 24 Jan A belated Merry Christmas Muddy was cleaning out the freezer yesterday and had to laugh The bottom shelf was crammed with bags of uneaten Cyril last year s turkey This year to avoid a repeat performance we re downsizing to a Cyril ette turkey crown As you know I get very excited about food and eating in general I ve rooted out my January trousers in readiness for the inevitable weight gain The calories I fear

    Original URL path: http://www.clareteal.co.uk/index.php/page/19/?page_id=2 (2016-02-15)
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  • Clare Teal -
    to mention a couple of trotters for the jelly and as those in the know will know hot water pastry can be very tricky not to mention hot can one use gloves I wonder I don t know if it s a Yorkshire thing but I was born with an abundant love for pies coursing through my veins Pork pies oop north are known as Growlers because they cause and stop the noise tummies make when they need food There s even an annual best pork pie competition held in Ripponden every April where pie lovers gather to sample entries from all over the county Melton Mowbray is famous for it s pies These are baked free standing as opposed to in a tin and have a unique shape and taste they put essence of anchovy in theirs At 20cm in diameter I guess we are actually making a Stand pie so called as during the final cooking process the pastry has to support its contents unaided by a tin Stand pies are traditionally made at Christmas time and no Boxing Day would be complete without bubble and squeak a big slice of pie a whodge of pickle or even better homemade piccalilllllllli and a few chips It seems pork pies take hours to make and have to rest over night as will I This is so the jelly can set I ll be honest I m not a huge fan of said jelly and as a child used to pick it out and hide it in pockets or behind various bits of furniture much to my mother s chagrin I m not looking forward to boiling a brace of pigs feet for 3 hours with the lid off to create it it s only a small kitchen so we

    Original URL path: http://www.clareteal.co.uk/index.php/pork-pie-making/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Clare Teal -
    usually decorative food held in the fingers and eaten in one bite Yorkshire Canapé ˈyôrkˌSHi ə r kanəˌpā pē a starter or small main course Muddy and I were thrilled to be at this year s Yorkshire Awards an event celebrating all that is brilliant about God s Own County Held at the Hilton and sponsored by Yorkshire businesses it was prestigious glittering yet down to earth and heart warming affair The Community Hero Award went to Sue King an incredible woman who has made set up a home for young men suffering drug addiction She gets no material benefits for any of the tireless work she does but has achieved incredible results using the limited funding she does receive The 3 time World Taekwondo Champion Sarah Stevenson picked up the Sporting Achievement Award despite devastating personal tragedy she continues to excel and inspire and will be representing us in the 2012 Olympics The fabulous Maureen Lipman won Yorkshire Woman of the Year sporting a hat composed entirely of Yorkshire puddings made by her own fair hands quipping If I don t win I ll eat my hat this was obviously before she d seen the canapés Brian Blessed was

    Original URL path: http://www.clareteal.co.uk/index.php/canapes/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Clare Teal -
    I was performing with Joe Stilgoe s band in front of the assembled members of the infamous Saints and Sinners club for their annual Whitebait Supper held this year at the fabulous new Boisdale Club in Canary Wharf where if like me you re fond of whisky you can sit and admire their incredible collection of single malts Why not try the Macallan 1945 an excellent year with lots to celebrate and all yours at just 1600 per single measure The Saints and Sinners Club was founded in 1947 by band leader Jack Hylton and journalist Percy Hoskins Membership is limited to just 100 and is made up of larger than life characters from all walks of life Self professed Saints wear white carnations and the Sinners red A very jolly time was had by all One of the many highlights of the evening was hearing Sir Tim Rice s hip shaking rendition of Elvis Presley s Teddy Bear who knew This was followed by Mike d Abo he who took over as lead singer with Manfred Mann after Paul Jones singing Handbags and Gladrags the song he wrote at just 22 famously covered by the sterophonics and used as the theme tune to Ricky Gervaise s The Office Just when we thought it couldn t get any better up popped Kit Hesketh Harvey he of Kit and the Widow with a selection of brilliantly witty songs my favourite being the one about Nando s set to the tune of Abba s Fernando I remember very fondly working with Kit and the Widow at Harrogate International Festival s 40th Anniversary bash some years ago Both Muddy and I were terrified that whitebait might be the only thing on the menu The idea of chomping on lightly battered little fish in

    Original URL path: http://www.clareteal.co.uk/index.php/saints-and-sinners-dinner/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Clare Teal -
    me one for the pot I hadn t seen a bilberry for years till all the supermarkets started selling them as blueberries I seem to remember our outdoor pursuits teacher trying in vain to teach us orienteering up there but as everyone knew every snicket of the moor we didn t bother with the compass and played Rallio 123 instead Do you remember that game Some years on Easter Sunday we d get up before sunrise and walk up to the pinnacle to join the Methodists or was it the Baptists for their sunrise service I wasn t really with it at that time of the morning but I do remember the buttery hot cross buns served afterwards with coffee from a flask I m not much of a coffee snob In fact if I m honest whispers quietly to one side I prefer instant waits for tutting to cease If I drink more than one real coffee a day my arms feel funny like they don t belong to me however if I m out and about I might on occasion order a cappuccino or increasingly a macchiato Muddy and I discovered macchiatos on a beach in Cornwall where else I explained to the man in the hut that whilst I d love to buy a coffee from him I didn t think it was a good idea to drink a bucket of hot liquid as we were about to go for a long walk and I could guarantee that by the time we reached Trevose Head which was less than half a mile away I d need to spend a penny Try a macchiato then one shot of espresso with a bit of frothed milk foam on the top Even someone with the bladder of a gnat could

    Original URL path: http://www.clareteal.co.uk/index.php/coffee-tales/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Clare Teal -
    against my legs with every step I can remember the exact smell of the building the colour of the walls the noise of the kids and of course the music Once inside the ballroom we d form a line and pay our subs to Joan at the big folding table Someone paid in Spanish pesetas one week we never found out who but anyone with a tan was held under suspicion till their parents could spring them at home time After that I d take off my beloved trainers and replace them with the dreaded golden dancing sandals of shame A year or so earlier aged 8 I d mentioned to mum and dad how I would love to tap dance like Fred Astaire There was obviously some breakdown in communication and the hoofer s shuffle of my dreams was replaced by The Military Two Step Square Tango and Edwardian Gavotte I didn t actually mind the dancing I loved the music and the company and very much enjoyed buying sweets at the interval but could never understand the fascination of those who chose to melt their cola bottles on the radiators instead of eat them Having already been labelled a geek for learning the clarinet and knowing who Glenn Miller was in assembly I was sailing close to the wind and so couldn t tell anyone I was now ballroom dancing twice a week Dad picked me up on Monday nights so providing I got to the car without being spotted I was safe Saturday mornings proved more difficult as after classes I went to spend the rest of the day with my beloved nan who lived just down the lane however a boy in my form lived opposite her house and trying to make that enormous red vanity

    Original URL path: http://www.clareteal.co.uk/index.php/a-rhythmical-return/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Clare Teal -
    amount required and kneaded for the exact time stated Although it clearly read If making rolls divide the dough into 10 equal portions I being a master baker knew better and whisked my 14 rolls upstairs by the boiler to prove I waited for 30 mins before having a peek Not one of them had risen Against my better judgment I decided to give the lazy blighters a further 30 mins to get their act together and moved them to the naughty step which happened to be in a sunny spot I have no doubt that if thrown with moderate force any one of the tiny yet impossibly heavy granite textured bread grenades could have caused serious harm Thankfully Muddy had thought to buy some spare baps just in case Moving swiftly on to the burgers Playing safe the first lot were solely made of squished beef these puppies were set to be topped with grilled goats cheese The second batch however were based on Jamie s Elvis burgers containing ground beef red chilli red onion chopped tarragon egg bread crumbs Dijon mustard parmesan cheese nutmeg and a bit if black pepper Apparently you don t salt burgers till you

    Original URL path: http://www.clareteal.co.uk/index.php/my-burgers-are-fit-for-a-king-but-beware-of-the-baps/ (2016-02-15)
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