I started this blog in 2003 to record recipes, mostly ones that I had 'improvised' to put it mildly. The URL was ironic, because I was not a great cook. I'm OK now, can get around most recipes. I still don't like show-off, look-at-me recipes or meals, and I have never watched a reality cooking show on TV, and I'm not going to start now. However I did watch cooking shows produced by people who incorporated some kind of geographical context in their shows such as Mildura's Stefano di Pieri. A couple of the British chefs were good such as the straightforward Delia Smith and Scot Nick Nairn, while Antonio Carluccio's show was one of my weekly favourites. But the best cooking show of all time, in my opinion, was Two Fat Ladies. Clarissa Dickson Wright and Jennifer Paterson said what they thought and didn't give a toss what anyone else thought. Refreshing, entertaining and mature. Anyone wanting a look into a more freewheeling era with fewer cultural or verbal strictures would do well to dig up this series from the Google mine. (While you're there, get the 1980s Minder series as well. Best TV show ever. Nothing to do with food, of course, but a lot of drinking goes on between the fights.)
So across the seventeen years of this weblog I have posted several hundred improvised or sheer made-up recipes: below are some. I don't remember half of them and I don't have an index: I just typed 'cupboard' into the blog search bar.
This post from 2004 involved a can of beans and a few other random ingredients.
Eight years later, I delved into the cupboard of a hoarder and devised a recipe based around sardines.
From 2007, another recipe assembling sardines with assorted random ingredients from the cupboard. I suspect sardines are going to be popular over the next few months. Maybe as popular as the 1960s when we had them at least once a week in school lunches. Anyone seen a child eat a sardine sandwich in the past few decades?
Then, from 2013, a midnight snack conundrum: a can of diced tomatoes and yet more beans.
Where do beans come from? Have they upscaled production in bean plantations and canneries around the world? What if we run out of steel cans? Or labels? Or beans?
There is suddenly a lot of time to ponder all these important questions.