Have one in your mouth, be peeling a second, have a third in your fist, and your eye on the fourth.
So went an old Irish saying, referring to a time in this country when meals for many were composed of potatoes and little else (and when five-a-day meant five kilos of potatoes, the average daily intake of an adult male in the years leading up to the Famine). The saying was recalled by Pádraic Óg Gallagher of Gallagher’s Boxty House on Bia Dúchais, a series on TG4 which explores Irish culinary heritage and whose attention, last week, focused on our relationship with the potato, from early adoption and dependency, to the blighted years of the Famine and, later, to the arrival of the Irish-Italian chipper and the modern potato crisp (five kilos a day of which, however tasty, is probably not to be recommended).
Time was when “pop-up” was a term you’d apply to your kitchen toaster.
These days, you’re more likely to hear it used in reference to something more substantial, yet less enduring than your average toaster, namely pop-up restaurants.
Pop-up restaurants are, by definition, transient. Perhaps not as transient as, say, news on Twitter, which can be old within hours but, nevertheless, they have, by their very nature, a short and limited life-span. In a way, they’re a product of the internet era, where attention spans are short, the volume of information is high, and you can only hold people’s attention for so long before they demand something new or at least different. In the case of the recent Jacob’s Creek pop-up wine and dine experience, which took place for four evenings at the end of June, attendees got both, through a combination of new wines and an unusual venue that was guaranteed to captivate.
Old setting for a new phenomenon:
The Jacob's Creek pop-up experience took place in the atmospheric (and not a little spooky) crypt underneath Christchurch Cathedral
I hereby issue a warning to all passing lemons.
I am going through a zesting phase and any lemons within range are likely to be relieved of their outer garments sharpish. Zorro-like, I will unsheath my beloved microplane zester, draw razor-sharp blades across their citrusy skins and have my wicked culinary way with the finely shredded results.
Other citrus fruit, I might add, are also at risk.
No lemon is safe...