Monday, 11 October 2010

Unequal Opportunities

I tend to be quite a neutral person, in terms of most things, I have my opinion and will put it cross if need be but totally understand that everyone is different and what works for you may not work for me.

I can totally understand the traditional roles of wife cooking, cleaning, looking after children and husband being the provider and generally chilling. If that’s what works for you then I am not judging. In this sort of relationship everyone has their part to play and I guess it maintains a healthy balance.

I also get the not so traditional role reversal of wife being the main breadwinner and husband staying home. Again there is a balance and for some people it works.

My problem is this… I have come across such a situation recently that my “neutral” stance, is totally disbelieving of. It is a situation that is flabbergasting me on a regular basis, but also a situation that is really none of my business and it is definitely not my place to get involved. So I bring my ranting to you…

Let me introduce you to Mr & Mrs Anon...

Mr Anon is out of work and has been for sometime, so stays home. Mrs Anon goes to work and has a 2nd job to earn extra money. Now to me, when you as part of a relationship are not currently bringing in an income and your partner has to work a full day as well as occasional overtime and then come home and cook your dinner and tidy up after you, you are not contributing to the "partnership". Had this been a job, you'd be fired.

I get that maybe you are not feeling as “manly” as you should by not going to work, but do you not feel even less manly watching your other half put the bins out, or staying home while she carries the shopping bags alone, or moving your feet out of the way while she hoovers around you? I am astonished that someone who can pretty much be described as a “kept man” wouldn’t feel the need to lift a finger to help and even has the audacity more often then not to complain.

I don’t know, maybe I live in a fantasy world and this is totally acceptable, although I find it really hard to believe. There is one party in this supposed “relationship” that is holding everything together. If you are neither the working party, nor the housekeeping party then what is your contribution to the ”lifestyle balance” that most couples strive for?

If the roles were reversed I’m sure there’d be arguments and I’m tempted to start one myself, but as I said it isn’t my place and if she isn’t complaining I guess I shouldn’t be, but I just had to get that out of my system.

Rant over...

Saturday, 2 October 2010

The Great Purple Alpha-Bake | B for Banoffee pie

So i’ve been excited about making Banoffee pie since I decided to do this whole Alpha-Bake. I am a Banoffee lover but, as is the randomness of my nature I don’t actually like bananas, especially not between caramel and cream as they tend to be quite brown and soggy and I am often sat in front of a plate of brown soggy bananas at the end of a dinner date. I was once pleasantly surprised, when I ordered banoffee at a restaurant called TheShip, where there were no bananas in sight, just banana flavoured cream… Yum!! Result!!

So when the day came I decided I would make Banoffee sans actual bananas, banana flavouring in the cream was my initial idea, but then I decided to blitz a couple of bananas into the caramel, oooh yeah, experimenting with recipes after only 2 weeks, get me.

I spent 2 hours loitering in the kitchen, over come with nervousness, waiting for my inevitable bad luck to cause the condensed milk cans, I had to boil for caramel, to explode!! I topped up the pot so many times to prevent said explosion I was pretty sure that when I opened the cans the condensed milk would still be in the exact same state it was in when I’d started. I had been told to buy the caramel condensed milk that I wouldn’t have to boil, and would’ve saved me 2 hours, but how often do you get to boil cans of milk? So I thought I’d go the traditional route.

Nothing about the pint of double cream or 2 tins of condensed milk I needed aroused my suspicions as to the huge restaurant style serving I would end up with. It ended up being 2 huge Banoffee pies which I had to phone family and friends to come and eat. Luckily, it was delicious (if I do say so myself), no brown, soggy banana to ruin the experience. Just yummy smooth banana flavoured caramel, crunchy biscuit and cream. A success!! Think this may be my new dinner party dish, not that I ever have dinner parties – lol.

My first Alpha-Bake success and only the 2nd letter. 24 to go, fingers crossed ;-)