Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The cat's out of the bag

So, what were Jason and I doing dressed up in formal wear in North London?

Why, going to the taping of the season finale of The F Word, of course.

The whole premise of the show was that they were inviting 50 vegetarians/pescetarians to try meat. Veal to be exact. Now, during our year-long trial of the veggie lifestyle, I broke down and had to incorporate some chicken after the first couple of months. But, considering a piece of veal had never crossed my lips, this was still a big deal for me. I have a thing about veal and lamb. Always have.

The whole thing was that they were making a big deal about "converting" 50 vegetarians. For those of you who don't know the premise of the show, each week they have a dining room of 50 guests and a brigade of amateur chefs cooking the food under Gordon's supervision. Sometimes the chefs are quasi-celebs. For example, ours were two of the girls from All Saints (a British girl group who had mild sucess in the US with the song "Never Ever" back in like 1998 or something) and their moms (I think it was moms. Minor details...). The brigade gets scored on how many diners out of 50 would be happy to pay for their meal.

Anyway, here are two pictures of our 15 minutes of fame. Or, to be more accurate, 15 seconds. Or, to be really accurate, about 3 seconds.

Sorry for the glare on your head, Jason.

Me with my first ever taste of veal. I was very tentative, as you can see. And, my! How fetching I look with a fork stuck in my mouth!

The verdict? Not so much impressed with the veal. Everything I had always heard about veal was that it was "so tender" and blah blah blah. Well, this veal was not what I would call tender. It was chewy and I no likey. I loved the marsala sauce and the veg medly though. And the dessert was heaven - roasted peaches with citrus creme fraiche and raspberry sauce on marzipan and topped with almonds.

What's the final status of our pescetarianism? We do eat meat now but much less of it - we pretty much always use meat substitutes when we cook at home. For the most part, if we eat meat in a restaurant, we try to make sure it's organic, free range and/or ethically sourced. In short, we eat meat but we consume responsibly.

The Croatia post will be up either tomorrow or Friday. Crossies heartsies.


Steph said...

you are hilarious.

Anna said...

Awesome! How did you hear about this? Was Gordon around?

Heather said...

Anna - We actually applied with some friends a while back to be a guest on The F Word so we kept getting the email blasts from the production company. When we got the one about veggies willing to try meat, we thought it was perfect... And yup, Gordon was there the whole time. We actually met him a couple of years ago and he was really nice - shockingly nice actually!

Suze - Manchester UK said...

Not to be picky, but was the footage reversed? Why are they showing your forks in your right hands?? Totally confused! Is it an optical illusion?

Beth N said...

Yay! You're famous! now I can say "I knew you when...."

PS. You look fab!

London said...

I would have looked out for you if I had known!

very cool:)

london southern belle

Muz & Mo said...


I cannot BELIEVE you finally got on the F Word - I AM SOOOOOOOOOOO jealous - and how fabulous that you got air time - damn I'm sad we missed it:)

Heather said...

Suze, in America we hold our forks with our right hand. And we use them with the tines pointing up. It's considered rather bad manners in the US to do it the way it's done here. When we first moved here, I remember thinking "Who are these savages eating like that???"

Suze - Manchester UK said...

Oh wow - totally didn't think you were savages, just thought they had mucked up the footage in the editing suite! That is really interesting - never knew it was reversed in the US! I bet there is a book out there on cultural differences in the use of cutlery... buy my stoopid *ss a copy?

Heather said...

Well, I consider myself just as ignorant because I had no idea of this cultural nuance until we loved here. I still haven't really gotten used to it actually! I still gawk at people in restaurants :) My southern table manners die hard!

Catherine said...

Totally off subject, but just how do people in the UK hold a fork?

Suze - Manchester UK said...

Catherine - I'm no etiquette expert (clearly!) but it's fork in the left hand, knife in the right hand in the UK. Aussies on the other hand tend to use their hands to shove as much in as will allow you to still talk freely. Usually to say something ill-informed. :)

Caitlin said...

I read your blog entry and then saw you guys on the show the other night when it repeated. Exciting!