Monday, June 11, 2007

Dinner with the Fool's Lantern

TV-Dinner

I have to admit that many of the meals I cook are eaten in front of the T.V. I make the effort some times, setting the table and setting some mood lighting, but more often than not dinner is sprawled out over the huge coffee table in the sitting room whilst watching the telly. I’d like to say that it what I’m watching is intellectually stimulating or particularly essential viewing, but I can’t. Basically, it’s utter geekery like Battlestar Galactica, Heroes, Spaced repeats and Life on Mars, which I missed the first time around. I’m fending off the advances of Big Brother as hard as I can, but the girlfriend keeps getting sucked in and I follow, like a sheep, either that or she’s getting a fix of Extreme Makeovers: Home Edition and we stare at the screen in fascinated horror for hours until they finally move the fucking bus and you get to see what consumer durables the family get. It’s like the most drawn out porno you ever saw, taking two hours to get to the money shot.

Anyway, cooking for TV viewing is a skill in itself. For preference you have to be able to eat with your hands, which is why I assume there’s always a temptation to go the fast food route, which is a pity since I read that eating in front of the TV is the modern world equivalent of eating round a campfire whilst the shaman tells tales. An activity quite so ancient, even in its modern form demands something a little better than a Dominos, I reckon. I’ll happily roast a chicken and steam a couple of corn on the cobs with a dollop of butter and a sprinkling of cayenne pepper for a double bill of CSI. Tapas style grazing strikes me as near perfect, a couple of warm potato tortillas and some peppers, an olive or two and a racion of jamon. Perfect for shouting at the 10 o'clock news or hiding behind the sofa with when Dr Who’s on. A bottle of wine, a bowl of fettuccine and tomato sauce and an episode of The Sopranos is near perfection.

It’s always soothing and comforting to be in front of the TV with something good to eat. The experience is far too depressing if the food is as shit as most of the programming, somehow it’s ok if you’ve spent the time in the kitchen beforehand, it feels like you’ve paid your dues for the evening and are entitled to watch whatever you like, no matter how brain numbing.

7 comments:

Barbara said...

For me I have to be able to eat it with a fork so we tend to eat stews, casseroles or chilli in front of TV.

Dagny said...

I agree with Barbara. Just a fork. If I need a knife and fork, then it really isn't TV suitable food. Of course, I have been known to stand in the kitchen, cutting the meat into bite-size pieces just so that I can enjoy it in front of the TV.

Ben said...

Makes me feel so much better about my routine after work. An hour or so pottering and cooking in the kitchen with Radio 4 before sampling my creation on the sofa. I don't place myself under the fork-only restriction, although it often works out that way. And thanks to the god that is Sky+ I can even delay the start of prime TV dining slots like Doctor Who.

Sam said...

We NEVER eat in front of the TV. Never ever. There is something about a Frenchman that makes you sit down to a proper dinner every night, even if it is only eggs and toast. I must admit, I wasn't brought up that way, but I do admit I do find I like breaking bread over a ittle uninterrupted together time. It's a nice constant to have.

Monkey Gland said...

I know Sam, I know, I'm such a slob ;-)

Ben said...

... and I live alone.

Su-Lin said...

We too are in-front-of-the-telly eaters. The TV needs a good wipedown after occasional enthusiastic noodle flinging.