November 27, 2004

Sturmy Skies

There are three main elements that I find stressful in the workplace: Not knowing what I’m doing, Not being in control, and Not feeling liked or useful. My new job features all of these elements in varying degrees.
Now that I’ve been doing it for four weeks, they are beginning to recede; I know a lot more than I did, but there’s an awful lot still to learn. I have been trained mostly by the girl who works for me, who very much wanted the job that I’ve got; so that’s been a challenging feat of management skill, for which I have largely relied on the force of my charming personality and my utter indifference to power struggles of any kind. Now that I am finally becoming useful in the role, I’m able to ease her workload a bit, and she is starting to relax. I do feel her pain, but there’s nothing much I can do about it; it wasn’t me who passed her over.
Back in the heady days of working in the recruitment industry, all my colleagues were delightful, bright, positive people who took an interest in everyone they met, and I miss that very much. It was good for me to be among such types, and I hope a little bit of it has rubbed off on me. I don’t think my new colleagues get me.
On an unrelated note, does anyone have good menu suggestions for a three course vegetarian meal for some friends we have never entertained before?


10 thoughts on “Sturmy Skies

  1. My favourite veggie recipe is Nigel Slater’s Mushroom and Potatoe Pie from Real Food – layers of mash and mushrooms and gruyere topped with a crunchy parmesan/mash crust.
    Give me a shout if you a copy of it
    (as a complete aside, my copy of Get To The Next Screen arrived fine; I just realised that in the rush of my new contract I’d forgotten to let you know, oops)

  2. Fattoush salad for starters, vegetable stew (fry onions gently, add cumin seeds and cumin powder, a bit of crushed garlic, chunks of carrots, turnips and butternut squash, cover with veggie stock + 1/2 tin chopped tomatoes, add harrisa paste to taste, simmer gently, add green beans, when nearly cooked add rinsed tin of chick peas and precooked and peeled broad beans) serve with couscous and mango sorbet with almond biscuits. If you go easy on the spices it should be acceptable to most palates and makes a change from the usual cheese or mushroom dishes.
    The bisuits are v.easy too beat a pack of butter until white and fluffly, add 100g icing sugar, beat some more, add 225g plain flour, knead, make walnut sized balls, put a whole almond on top of each, bake 20 minutes at 150c (the biscuits stay white and the almond brown slightly)

  3. I have the problem everytime I start a new project. It’s one of the things i hate about being a consultant.
    Vegeterian stir fry is always easy.

  4. The last three-course vegetarian meal I cooked was:
    STARTER: Corn & Spinach Chowder
    Take a whole bunch of fresh spinach, fry it in a little olive oil (it shrinks dramatically so you’ll need a LOT. Now throw in a can of corn, a few handfuls of grated cheese, and (this is the kicker) a pot or two of corn-flavoured baby food (this gives it a better texture). You now end up with a strange looking soup, but it’s absolutely delicious, especially if you season it with pepper and tabasco sauce.
    MAIN: Stuffed Peppers
    In a pot, make a decent amount of cous-cous, with some very finely cubed carrot, coorn, and peas mixed in. Now chop the lids off some capsicums (bell peppers) and, after scraping out the seeds, fill the peppers with the cous-cous mix. Put some grated cheese on top, and then get some of those giant mushrooms and stick them on top of the peppers as ‘hats’ (if you’re not a mushroom fan, you can just replace the originally cut-off lids of the peppers- alternately you can fill the mushrooms with cheese and cook them on the side). Cook the peppers for about 20 minutes at 180.
    DESSERT: Cheesecake
    Okay you take some flour, and some, uhm, cheese and……oh, fuck it, just go and buy one from the store.

    Destructor on November 29, 2004
  5. I’d managed to keep that a secret this year…. wasn’t it you who let the cat out of the bag last year as well?? Tsk.

  6. Happy Birthday Karen – whenever.
    Oh – and “mixed grill” – always a favourite with the veggies!

  7. happy birthday
    happy birthday
    happy birthday to youuuuuu
    happy birthday dear Karen
    happy birthday to yoooooouuuuuuu

  8. Happy Birthday Karen!
    (via the good Doctor and Mr D. and Adrian and Stuart and my Auntie Beryl).
    (OK, my Auntie Beryl didn’t know it was your birthday. I lied).

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