For breakfast this morning I enjoyed raw honey scooped out of a fresh honeycomb after being nurtured in the warm sunshine. I slathered it on a wee dod of fresh-baked soda bread and added a smidgen of warm butter, then washed it down with a cool glass of milk. This really is the true ambrosia of the gods. Strangely enough, the consumption of ambrosia was historically reserved for only the most divine of beings. Take Heracles for instance, upon his assumption into immortality on Olympus, Heracles is given ambrosia by Athena, while the hero Tydeus is denied the same thing when the goddess discovers him eating human brains. But you knew all that, right?
We've all eaten human flesh at some stage in our lives, haven't we? The odd chew on an ear during a bar fight, the inevitable nose or finger bitten off during a drunken scuffle, it's not only a Glasgow thing, say no more. It's no big thing really, let's face it, after a few months of sharing a small barred cell with an English heroin addicted gobshite who snores, the very least he can do is to give up a few of his toes for your supper, eh?
Just in case you are a law abiding citizen (there are a few of us left) and you are feeling hungry, but you cannae find any nice crunchy toes in the fridge to munch upon, try this on for size.
Glesga Spag Bol.
You will need the following.
Generous curl of Scottish butter
100g smoked streaky bacon, finely diced
2 red onion, finely diced
1 carrot, finely shredded
2 sticks celery, finely diced
250g finely minced best rump steak
40g free range chicken livers, finely sliced
150ml full fat milk
Nutmeg, to grate
150ml Wolfblass red label Shiraz
400ml tin plum tomatoes
3 fingers of single malt
Melt the butter in a large flameproof casserole set over a gentle heat, and then add the bacon. Once the bacon fat has started to melt, add the onion, and cook gently until softened, then tip in the carrot, and cook for 5 minutes before adding the celery and cooking for a further 2 minutes.
Crumble the beef into the pan with feeling and brown, stirring occasionally to break up any lumps. Season, then stir in the livers, and let it cook for another 5 minutes while you savour the malt.
Pre-heat the oven to 125C. Pour in the milk, and grate a little nutmeg over the top. For the love of St. Patrick himself, do not catch your fingers on the grater. It hurts. Trust me.
Simmer gently until almost all the milk has evaporated, which should take about half an hour, just enough time to read the paper, do the ironing or even rescue the new sofa cushions from your pet goat.
Pour in the wine and the tomatoes and stir well. Put the casserole into the oven, with the lid slightly ajar, and cook for at least 3 hours (4 is even better) until the meat is very tender. Check on it occasionally, and top up with a little sparkling spring water. Serve with pasta or gnocchi, good friends, and a generous helping of grated Parmesan or pecorino cheese. For the love of all the holy saints, do not forget, only chop the fresh parsley and sprinkle it on top moments before you are ready to serve. Serve with a glass or two of the Shiraz to bring out the flavour of the food.