Baba Ganoush and ratatouille

We’re all set to have a glut of vegetables again, which is fine and absolutely lovely as I like veggies very much … but we haven’t finished the freezerful from last year and we need to make space.  Isn’t it always the way?  And yet, unlike when you freeze masses of runner beans and are only too thankful to throw them out next year to make room for the next bunch, this is stuff we want to use up.  So tonight’s dinner was mostly vegetables – not that much out of the freezer in fact,  just some leeks, but aubergines and tomatoes from the greenhouse were added, along with cheese sauce, herbs, nuts, garlic and half a tin of anchovies.  And a nice bottle of red, or at least some of it.  So far.

Last night, I was looking up the website of a fairly local pub that we used to go to some years ago, and got out of the way of visiting, for no particular reason – Tim and I have been discussing the awful uncertainty of the catering trade, but that’s another story – last summer, I went to a funeral in that village and saw it had been sold and was being refurbished.  We tried to book there a few weeks ago, but they’d had some domestic problem and had to shut for a few days … anyway, we’re always on the lookout for a nice pub that’s not too far away, so I checked out the menu.  And I’m not sure.  it looks a bit generic gastro pub grub, to be honest.  So it depends on how well it’s done: with flair or just pretentious and a bit overpriced.  I suspect we’ll check it out when we’re in the area, but I’m not sure it’s worth making a special journey.

Anyway, yes, the catering trade.  We hardly ever go out to eat in the evening but we make a point of eating out about once a week.  Yagnub and the surrounding area has lots of good places, many of which are cafés serving good lunches, cakes and so on but don’t normally open in the evening.  So people don’t necessarily book, but their reputation is gained from their freshly cooked food.  So they have to buy it in and plan their menu, not having much idea how many people will come on any day.  I honestly have no idea how it works.  My parents owned a biggish hotel, many years ago – that is, they sold it sixty years ago – and my mother never forgot how stressful it was.  We had a very good lunch a couple of weeks ago locally, but we were the only customers in the 40 minutes or so we were there, though someone was in the bar.  And the other day, we went into the place where we had our night-before-the-wedding bash and, most unusually, there was hardly anyone else there on a Friday lunchtime.  Yet sometimes, midweek, in the same place, we’ve been lucky to get the last table.  We decide where to go at the last minute, normally, just think where we haven’t been for a while or what sort of food or ambiance we’re after – it’s just potluck and pretty random.

“Most unusually,” I very slightly mistyped.  It autocorrected.  To ‘moist Tunisia.’  What??????

 

2 comments on “Baba Ganoush and ratatouille

  1. Rog

    We are always in awe of people who make a success of catering, particularly now every Tom Dick and Harry fancy themselves as a food critic on trip advisor. The logistics of having 20 different dishes available for anyone who may or may not decide to pop in is daunting – and if they are cooked from scratch people will criticise the service time. Like retailing but with food which only keeps for a day or two.

    Reply
    1. Z Post author

      Yes, it was tricky enough guessing what fruit and vegetables people would want, which Alex did daily for nine years.

      Reply

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