Double apologies, Pickles fans, for the gratuitous punning – I did also consider ‘Game theory’ and ‘Game of two halves’ -also for the delay in updating. This past week I have been stricken with a grotesque lurgy that has knocked out at least two of my senses at any given time. I still have it, but I am dragging myself to the keyboard for your blogging pleasure, you lucky things.

Where was I? oh yes, meat. Those of you that have known me for a while will know that I spent most of my adult life, from the age of 14 I think it was, as a vegetarian. I am now not. I didn’t have some profound epiphany, nor was it years of pent-up bacon lust that I finally succumbed to. I always said that the day I wanted to eat meat I would, but for years and years I just didn’t want to. Then I did. I would be lying if I said TOMW was not a big factor in this, partly because she has very good taste for the finer things in life, including meat, which I learned to appreciate too. We also sing from the same hymn sheet about how this stuff is sourced, which is really the crucial thing.

We don’t eat much of it, as we don’t eat the cheap stuff, so it has become a weekend treat. I found a good local butcher in Penge that stocks free-range British meat and we have also started adding a bit of good meat to the veg box order (if we can’t be arsed to go to Penge) and then feasting over the weekend, which allows me to practice my meat-prep skills and try and do the little critters some justice.  For a while I have been quite interested in the idea of game, because it ticks a lot of boxes for me – in that it is almost always free range and lean. When it comes to things like pigeons and rabbits, I think it has to be the most ethical meat you can get, in so much as they are in abundance and living natural lives before they get their heads blown off – and if you are destined to be quarry of some sort, surely it’s better to have quick death.

So, over the past week I have had a couple of bites of the pigeon. First at Loves in Birmingham, where I had an amazing dinner including an awesome pigeon starter (made even more awesome by a bottle of crianza and a long night of chatting with my dearest friend), and then this weekend I had a go myself and cooked up some pigeon breasts at home:

(Disclaimer – it wasn’t this shiny, that was the camera flash – also that is not blood but a red wine joo. Thank you)

Jolly nice it was too – and when I think back to the crushing disappointment of going down the garden to pick my gooseberries to make a pie for friends, only to be confronted with a naked gooseberry bush and some very fat wood pigeons staring blankly at me surrounded by gooseberry skins – revenge is a dish best served warm with mashed potato and a red wine sauce.