Bold as Brass


As you can see the wee witch is proud of her work. THAT RUG IS NOT SUPPOSED TO BE SCRUNCHED UP!

It’s supposed to be nicely placed by the balcony doors so that when I come from a wet balcony after watering the triffids I dont traipse soggy footprints across the parquet.


The fat ungrateful baggages (treats are SO OVER) think I put it there so they can use it for running slides and to rub off all extra cat fur.

They’ve ruined all my curtains. They’ve destroyed my tablecloths. I’ve only saved the sofa because I keep it covered. And I cant have a tiny simple rug. Nope.


The glace cherry on the tourta? They gloat. Positively. GLOAT.

There’s going to be a revolution in this palace. Mark my words!


Spicy Mung Bean Salad

Very refreshing and filling for a hot summer day


I like mung beans because they have a lovely green and earthy flavour that goes well with lots of herbs and spices. They’re also light but filling. I made this salad to use up lots of odds and sods in the fridge. Hence the lettuce. I’d be tempted some other time to add some fresh coriander and spearmint to this. I think that would work well here too. This has quite a kick to it so reduce chillies if you’re not a fire fiend like me.

I used Sharwood’s Madras curry powder because it’s easy for using in salads. Any Greeks reading this, please dont use the generic curry powder available in supermarkets here. It’s cack. Either find something like Sharwoods (available in Thanopoulos in Kifissia usually) or go to one of the many Pakistani or Bengali shops in the centre. Those shops are also brilliant for buying basmati rice at half the price, getting tins of kidney beans or chick peas, dried red lentils and mung beans, and great frozen felafel.

mung bean salad

200g of mung bean soaked overnight and cooked

1 small onion sliced finely in half moons

a thumb sized piece of ginger grated

a clove of garlic grated

4 small green chillies deseeded and finely chopped

2 small red chillies deseeded and finely chopped

1 tsp of Madras curry powder

a good handful of chopped flatleaf parsley

4 cos lettuce leaves finely shredded

the juice and zest of half a large lemon

a good couple of glugs of evo oil

a little sea salt to taste

Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl and chill for a bit before serving. Serve with toasted arabic pitta bread and ice cold beer.

Beany nut burger


Messy but pretty good and sooo virtuous. I’m a saint.

I was inspired by Anna Jones to make a veggie burger. I didnt make her one (I’m sure its brilliant, better than mine, her food is good) in the guardian as I didnt have all her ingredients so I just took the general idea and came up with this. Adapt to suit your tastes.

And for any whinging meat eaters:

I eat meat. I love meat burgers but veggie burgers are great too. No, they dont taste anything like a meat burger and have a different texture. So what? I think it’s a good idea to cut back on meat consumption. I keep it as a treat. I think that’s how it should be, in the main.

I used stuff I had in my cupboard and fridge, recipes are for messing with… theyre not sacred. Black eye peas would work here too.


250g cooked borlotti beans

4 Tbs oat

2 Tbs crushed flaxseed

a good handful each of walnuts, hazelnuts and sunflower seeds whizzed in a food mixer until well ground but still some crunchy bits.

1/2 small tin of sweet corn (optional)

juice 1/2 lime

glug of EVO oil

1/2 tsp smoked paprika

1/4 tsp cumin

2 good pinches of oregano

a handful of chopped flatleaf parsley (or fresh coriander)

a dash or 2 of hot sauce.


Mash the beans well. Mix in all the ingredients and use your hands to combine everything thoroughly just as you would with a meat mixture. Leave mixture in the fridge covered for a couple of hours to allow the oats and flax to absorb moisture from the beans and other ingredients.

form into burger sized patties and shallow fry, bake or grill.

I served this on a mini baguette with shredded lettuce, sliced tomato, sliced jalepenos, mayo, mustard and brown sauce. This needs a napkin!

You can also make these into little rissoles and serve with a salad if you really want to virtue signal.


Salmon with lemon and cream pasta


Easy food. Guys like it.

The Corfiot came to stay with me for a few days and specifically requested I make him this dish. It’s actually a very quick easy meal so I gave him the recipe and now he can make it himself back in Corfu. If I make it in summer, I use spring onions and in winter I use leeks. I use penne rigate pasta but use your own favourite. I think this would be nice with tagliatelle.

For two

150 – 200g smoked salmon chopped into bite sized pieces

1 large leek sliced or 3-4 spring onions sliced

200 ml of single cream

1/2 a glass of white wine

juice of 1/2 lemon

a good glug EVO oil

a good handful of flat leaf parsley roughly chopped

a good grinding of black pepper to serve.


Add the oil to a heavy bottomed skillet over a low heat and gently saute the leeks or onions until softened. Add the wine and sizzle off until reduced to almost nothing. Add the salmon and cook for a few minutes. Do not overcook as it becomes hard and fragile. Stir and turn carefully and gently. Add cream. When its hot, add the lemon a drop at a time until the sauce has a nice lemon tang. Dont make too lemony as you want the other flavours to come through. Add parsley and your just cooked pasta to the pan. Serve with a good grind of black pepper and a nice crisp white such as the Greek Paranga by Kir Yianni. Or the Rose Petaloudes.

15th of August in Greece


A deserted Patission street, one of Central Athen’s main thoroughfares, this evening.

Tomorrow is the 15th of August and the feast of the Virgin, a holy day second only to Easter in the Orthodox calendar. In the days leading up to this national holiday, the majority of Athenians decamp to islands, holiday homes and ancestral villages, often staying away until the end of the month and the beginning of the new school year.

So Athens is currently a baking hot ghost town. The roads are deserted, many of the shops shuttered and most of the bars and restaurants, with the exception of those in tourist trap Monastiraki, closed for the next 2 weeks. In fact, Monastiraki is about the only lively place in the city right now. The rest of it, from the centre to the suburbs, is eerily quiet. For those of us who will be here its a nice change from the chaos and noise of normal Athenian life but it can be a bit boring, as there’s nowhere to go unless you have friends who have also stayed behind. Most of mine aren’t here, but I have work to do so the isolation should help productivity!

If I didnt have work, I would like to be in Corfu for this holiday. There the traditional holiday feast is patsitsada, a cockerel stewed in tomatoes with a variety of spices and served with buccatini pasta. Its fabulous food and I know a lady who does an excellent job of it too. Next year, Kyria Louisa… next year!

If you happen to be anywhere in Greece tomorrow and are wondering where all the Greeks have gone, they will be in someone’s home, family more than likely, having a big slap up feast in honour of the holy mother, and never let it be said that Greeks don’t honour mothers!

The little boat that could.

We took a little boat trip to a fab beach with an ancient temple to Asklipios and a glorious little beach. Our captain was a lovely Rumanian fella. We had a bit of a Mexican stand off when it came to letting us off at the tiny pier because a local crusty old sea dog didn’t want to move his boat out of our way.

He did eventually.

It was too hot to walk there and knee is a bit gippy. So it was nice to sit on a little boat and be all nautical.