I was up very early this morning. Partly because the poodles decided I’d had enough sleep but mostly because I had to get the tagine on for lunch with Sophie and Tom.
The Moroccan equivalent of a casserole, a tagine needs to cook for a good two hours. This makes the meat nice and tender and the flavour divine.
So, first up, I was trimming the lamb then adding spices and water. I then set it to boil then simmer in my Crueset while I woke Mirinda with a tea and set to tidying up.
Mirinda drove up to Farnham station at 11 and picked them up. By the time they returned the house smelled like a Moroccan restaurant – in a very good way.
As usual, Mirinda and Sophie found something to discuss in the garden (mostly concerning under-planting) and I had a light sabre fight with Tom.
Lunch was eventually served. Tom had been banging the gong for ages before it was ready so I had him carry the gong into the garden, with the instruction to announce “This is not a drill.” Normally he gets these things correct but for some reason he left out the ‘not’, announcing that his gonging was, in fact, a drill. My yelling correction set them straight however and we soon sat down to the tagine with couscous.
Tom had brought his two robots with him, one of which is ideally suited for transporting bread from one end of the table to the other. He delivered slices of baguette to all of us on the top of the spider-bot. It was a lot slower than just reaching over and taking a piece. I told him it would never catch on.
Tom did get a bit sooky at one stage when Sophie insisted he stop watching Youtube videos that were above his age range. It didn’t last. He’s too happy a chap to remain miserable for long.
After lunch, Mirinda and Sophie went up the road for a coffee while Tom and I sat down to watch the fantastic Aardman film, The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists!
It is brilliant. Almost as good as Megamind and a million miles better than The Ugly Duckling and Me, which we watched last time.
The story revolves around the Pirate Captain (Hugh Grant) who wants to win Pirate of the Year. In his attempt to win, he ends up meeting Charles Darwin, going to the Royal Society and having an amazing showdown fight with Queen Victoria (Imelda Staunton), who is part of a group of rulers who love eating endangered animals. An odd premise but incredibly funny. We both thoroughly enjoyed it.
Mirinda and Sophie timed their return perfectly (as the film had ended) and sat down to enjoy a cup of tea while Tom became engrossed in a film on his iPad.
It was then time for them all to leave me and the poodles to clean up. Sophie and Tom back to the Isle of Wight and Mirinda to Luton for a conference.
It was a lovely day.