Wednesday, 8 August 2007

If I'd Known You Were Coming I'd Have Baked A Cake

One thing I am learning about football is that when you start digging there is invariably more to find around any particular subject. For example, the relationship between football and food.

I've posted about food and football before of course. Well pies anyway.

But surprise surprise that only touches the surface. Food has always played a big part in stadium activities. Right back to the Romans who nibbled on the the odd dormouse at half time when watching gladiatorial sports in the Coliseum. Don't believe me? Here is the recipe - in Latin then translated into English for the Leeds United fans who obviously will not have had the sort of education that would have resulted in any consideration of the classics:

"Glires: isicio porcino, item pulpis ex omni membro glirium trito, cum pipere, nucleis, lasere, liquamine farcies glires, et sutos in tegula positos mittesin furnum aut farsos in clibano coques."

"Stuff with a forcemeat of pork and small pieces of dormouse meat trimmings, all pounded with pepper, nuts, laser, broth. Put the dormouse thus stuffed in an earthen casserole, roast it in the oven, or boil it in the stock pot."

In 1998, Colman's Football Food Guide ranked English football clubs according to their catering facilities. Leicester came 34th . Apparently the authors scoffed 323 pies, 185 hot dogs, 291 burgers and 144 portions of chips. Now that is devotion to duty.

One commentator remembers 'fondly' how things were 30 years ago:

"Washed down with a weak and tepid Bovril, the 70s pie was a sad affair devoid of any genuine meat with traceable ancestry, and with a crust that could take the enamel off your teeth."

Of course these days with the middle classes moving in on football in ever increasing circles, there is a need to cater for a variety of tastes. I'll leave you to decide which is the corporate hospitality menu for each club and which for the 'ordinary' fans.

Aston Villa

Duet of smoked and fresh salmon on a crab tartare with cucumber salsa.
Supreme of chicken with mousse de foie gras, brioche croutons and a madeira and brandy glaze.
Vanilla panacotta with hot blueberries.
Selection of cheeses.

Chicken balti pies, steak and kidney pies, burgers, hot dogs, pasties, pizzas, chips.

Bolton Wanderers

Whisky and treacle-cured fillet of salmon with blini and truffle emulsion.
Tranche of turbot set on roasted vegetables, pancetta and white beans, edged by a Sauternes sauce.
Chocolate gallette with praline mousse and honey ice cream.

Meat and potato pies, steak and kidney pies, sausage rolls, hot dogs.


Timbale of halibut and seared scallops wrapped in smoked salmon with a herb and citrus dressing.
Pan-fried seabass with thyme-infused fondant potatoes, wilted spinach and chive buerre blanc.
Plum and Armagnac flan with Chantilly cream or chocolate torte with strawberry sauce.

Burgers, pizzas, hot dogs, pies (including vegetarian balti), fish and chips.

Norwich City (Delia's territory)

Curried parsnip and apple soup.
Pepper-crusted monkfish with a red pepper relish.
Passion fruit brulee.
Cheeses from the Neal's Yard Dairy.

Pies (steak and kidney plus, on a rotating basis, pork and apple, cauliflower cheese, lamb and mint), burgers, pizza, chips.

What would Jamie say? Not "pukka" it would seem.

1 comment:

Jungle VIP said...

George George George.

How come Reading is down at position 82 ?.....Mind you i'm not shocked at all. When we used to play here

The pies used to be very dubious indeed. Wimp's like your reader here usually had a hot dog, laced with over-cooked onion,dodgy generic tomato sauce and vivid yellow mustardo.

Beer was .....wait for it....Carling Black Label and John Smiths. Horrid ! Not a glass of House Chardonnay or Penis Gridge to be seen either. Unless you count these men.