“Sleep tight and don’t let the bed bugs bite”
Well, beds in some parts of the UK used to be a frame with rope strung from one side to the other, with a mattress made of all sorts of natural stuff. Every now and then you would have to pull the ropes tighter. As for the bed bugs!!! There in posh houses they would put coals in a pan made of copper and rub inside the bed to hear a popping sound of the “Wee beasties” (Northern Scottish accent).
For some reason, I was attempting to find the soothsayer from Up Pompeii and failed. In the meantime looking at some YouTube of the series I enjoyed cringing at the odes. I also recalled Manny, a relative of Frankie Howerd who was a dear friend to my mother, but didn’t actually like me (you cannot win them all).
So, anyways I felt the need to do something Up Pompeii ode~like:
Note: It’s a poetic attempt at satire from that era.
A saucepan with the base as wide as a dinner plate or more and the height at least 6inches
A big slatted metal spoon
A couple of average size potatoes (smaller than one you would use as a baked spud)
Vegetable oil (not sunflower oil as it doesn’t take to cooking at chip temperature as well)
A pinch of salt to taste
In the saucepan pour in about 2inches of the vegetable oil. Turn the heat up under the pan and
keep an eye on the hot oil!
so as when a cube of bread starts to sizzle when you drop it in, the oil is hot enough to cook the chips (so if the potatoes are not ready yet, move the bloody pan to another ring before it sets itself on fire and panics the hell out of you).
So, while that heats up, take a couple of average size potatoes, rinse and cut off any sprouty bits, but leave the skin on. Slice into chip shapes (thicker takes longer, but uses less oil and is healthier). Make sure the chips are not soaking wet, check again that the oil is the right temperature (when another cube of bread starts to sizzle when you drop it in) and you’re ready to put the chips into the hot oil. Stir once with the big slatted metal spoon and maybe again in a few minutes, but once you start to hear them make a high pitch sizzle and/or start to turn golden, then anytime after that you can test to see if they are ready, by picking one out with the slotted spoon, cutting it in half and tasting it. Enjoy!