the importance of condiments

For people that know me,  here I will hold up both my hands and admit, I am a condiment slut. You really can't underestimate the importance of the quality of good condiments. I'm talking about salt, pepper,oil,butter, these sometimes thought of as incidental in the grand scheme of a recipe. But I feel they are the backbone of your flavour palate and should be sought out and cared for. You probably think I'm mad but I feel very strongly about the different qualities of salt that I use,for example, 

charcoal chamber

This is my version of a charcoal chamber. Burn a piece of charcoal on the gas hob until white and ashy. Using a tongs, place it in a ramekin buried within whatever you're marinating. Drizzle with some veg oil and cover the whole bowl with some foil to trap the smoke. Leave it for a few hours, cook as normal, grill/BBQ - 

forgotten garnish

Well it came and went, Christmas day that is. All the prep, shopping, cleaning and general re organising of the house. By the time it came around, I was absolutely exhausted, excited, but exhausted. Seems to be an all too common thread for women 'round the world, well mostly women. First of all, it starts too bloody early..