Thursday, September 21, 2017

G is for Games

I love games. I love board games, video games, pen and paper games, card games, word games, dice games...pretty much anything slightly gamish.


When I was a kid we'd often play card games with our parents. My sister Caroline and I usually had a game of Monopoly on the go on our bedroom floor. My youngest sister Sally and I played games like Key to the Kingdom and Anticpation. Once my Dad came home with a second hand games console in a cardboard box. I think it was a texas instruments console, anyway it came with a cassette player to load the games onto the console and it took ages to get set up. That started our love of video games.


I spent hours in my room as a teenager listening to music and playing Yahtzee by myself on a felt board my Dad had made. I loved when Christmas came around , there was often a new board game to play and plenty of time to play it all together. Family would come around and we'd play Charades/Give us a clue. I loved it.

Winterbells


My love of games led me to be looking for free online games to play which is how I met JD, also playing an online game. Not the best game but a forum with a lot of great people we got to know over the years we played. We'd play games on the forum together, I enjoyed Rock, Paper, Scissors tournaments we had and trying to beat each others high scores at games such as Helicopter or Winterbells.


My Dad loved gaming (pictured playing Rocksmith on the XBox). In the early years he played a lot of RPG type games, we'd have to help by drawing maps of caves or dungeons he was exploring. No auto-maps back then. No saves either, if you died you had to decide if you wanted to spend the time getting to where you were when you died or give up for the day. I don't know how he had the patience for it to be honest. We've had some great times over the years playing some really good video games but also plenty terrible ones too. Games my Dad couldn't get through even if I was sat next to him reading from a walkthrough in a magazine.

Simple games have always been useful for passing the time when travelling or waiting for a hospital appointment. You just need a pen and paper to play Hangman, Noughts and Crosses, Battleships or one of tons of games. Word games like I-spy, The Lord Mayor's cat or I went to the shop and I bought etc are also good for those times. I was talking to a Portuguese friend at work recently and realised we played a game in common. It's the game where you have to think of a thing for each category (like animal, country, film etc) and they all have to start with the chosen letter. You get points if no one else picked the same thing as you. She called it Stop because of how they choose what letter to use (someone is thinking the letters of the alphabet until someone says stop). I have no idea what we call it, maybe the Alphabet game. It's fun though and I remember us playing it as kids. I could never get an animal starting with N :D

Games are a simple pleasure for me, I'm always up for playing something. I enjoy spending time with my family playing a game. I'm not even that competitive, I just enjoy playing. I like winning of course but I've never flipped over a board game in a rage or anything. Honest!


Thursday, September 7, 2017

Burger That! 4: Sticky Lemongrass burger

This recipe looks interesting. I love fusion food and this is a great example. It's a perfect meal for JD and I to have while the kids are away at their Dad's. I do all the prep, making up the burgers and then relax while JD cooks them in the frying pan. I don't have the patience to cook something that needs constant watching, if it was left to me we'd eat things before they were fully cooked and suffer from food poisoning. Luckily JD is on hand to save us from that!

The burger is made up of chicken mince mixed with spring onions, lemongrass puree, ginger and garlic. Formed into patties and then cooked for 4 minutes on each side.


Then to make it sticky you mix together soy sauce, fish sauce, rice wine vinegar, water and sugar to make a syrupy sauce. Pour it over the burgers and cook covered for a further 3 minutes. Serve in a bread buns with cucumber sticks and lime wedges on the side.


I really liked the sticky glaze on the burgers. It worked perfectly and gave the meat a lovely asian flavour. Squeezing lime over the burger before you eat it adds a subtle sour tang which I also liked. Very nice!

Ratings: JD -3, Emma - 4