Pseudopoultry   2 comments

Parsnips and the public sector.

On Tuesday the 29th I tried something new for dinner: Quorn. I’d never tried the bizarre magical mushrooms before, and as the chicken-emulating sort were on offer I thought I should. So dinner was a giant vegetable stir-fry with quorn in it. And an entire ginger root sliced up and chucked in, ‘cos buggered if I knew what else to do with it (I needed a bit for the curry, the Co-Op only sell it in kilogram bags, and it only keeps for ten minutes*).

And it turned out really well. Surprise of the day: Quorn is quite tasty! And surprisingly close to actual chicken, or at least to the substance found in chicken nuggets. Both pretty amazing. I’m not sure it’s terribly efficient, though; how much effort does it take to murder a chicken? Any medium-sized predator could do that. And chickens are assembled from eggs by unskilled chicken labour. But Quorn requires a factory, where they grow mould in massive tanks, heat-treat it so it doesn’t cause gout, and then mix it with egg-whites and form it into stuff that’s a bit like meat. So they’re using the basic ingredient for chickens, and a lot of tech and effort, to make something that’s an acceptable facsimilie of poor-quality processed chicken.

And anyone squeamish about meat isn’t going to go near the stuff, surely? No comprende, lo siento. But whatever, it made a nice stir-fry. You get a lot of nosh to the calorie in veg stir-fry, too.

The other experiment/surprise was “can you stir-fry parsnips?”, and the answer was a resounding yes. I used to hate parsnips, but I’ve really been enjoying them lately. Funnily enough, I think the reason I hated them then – their unusually strong flavour – is the reason I like them now.

After dinner I went to the gym. I don’t usually go on a Tuesday, but the public sector were having Wednesday off so it would be closed then.

I didn’t really care about the strikes (the extent of its affect on me was “going to the gym a day early”. Not even I can get worked up about that), and was ambivalent about the argument in general. On the one hand, I can see why people are upset about having their work benefits changed; I’d be angry too, if it were me. On the other, the government does only have a finite amount of money to play with, pensions are bloody expensive, and if I were offered an inflation-linked average-salary pension for less than 15% of my salary I would grab it with both hands and also my teeth; it – any defined benefit scheme – is better than anything I could possibly hope for. So whilst our current overlords seem to enjoy burning things to the ground just to smell the smoke, it’s also hard to feel terribly sorry for the minions.

Just like you can understand why ludicrously rich people don’t like the 50% tax rate, whilst thinking “look! You earn enough to pay 50% tax! You’re crazy rich, be thankful!”.

And in both cases it’s not like the money vanishes into a black hole and is never seen again; it’s spent on making people’s lives better with healthcare (most accessible in the world, and more cost effective than, say, the awful American system), education (although that does seem frowned upon and is being phased out), and simply preventing people from dying of starvation or exposure. And on corporate interests like funding the purchase of unnecessary cars and demanding ISPs spy on people, but you can’t have everything. Apparently a well-educated population isn’t a corporate interest. Take from that what you will.

* Okay, the bag was about eighty-five grams. But that’s still a lot of ginger.


2 responses to “Pseudopoultry

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  1. Ginger freezes and can be used straight from the freezer !!

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