It was all a bit traumatic: still wary of being in a car since the accident; the first time in another enclosed space for many months; having to go through all the injuries from nearly three years ago. The final straw was the utterly awful blaring radio playing in the waiting room.
We were gratefully wafted aloft in the lift and I went through the now rather tedious litany of damage, pain and limitations. A thorough inspection and a trio of exercises to practice over the next few weeks and we were out and back to the lift.
My trusty escort was mightily impressed that the Covid-secure precautions had extended to a plastic label over the call buttons to make cleaning easier. But the lift refused to budge: the doors opened and shut; the announcement said “Going Down”; increasingly frantic button presses gained reaction but no descent. The escort disappeared to investigate an alternative route via stairs.
The lift ping-ed, the doors opened and someone stepped out. “Is it working?” I asked and the engineer replied, “Not at the moment. I’m servicing it. There’s a sign on the buttons saying “Do Not Use” “. But he relented and we went rather shame-faced on our way.
Two morals to this tale: don’t trust (male) partners to read even three-word instructions and please try to service lifts after disabled people have left the building.
1 duck breast (about 250g).
1 teaspoon honey.
1 flat teaspoon five spice mix.
A pinch each of salt and pepper.
A dash of soy sauce.
A portion of GGG.*
A tiny amount of oil.
Place all the ingredients except the oil in a bag and vacuum pack.
Place in a sous vide water bath or pan of water, ensuring the bag is submerged, and cook at 55C.
When cooking like this at a constant water temperature, the timing depends on how long the heat takes to penetrate the meat. As the temperature is constant, the meat can be left in the water bath until you are ready for it – with this recipe, I’d left the duck in the sous vide for three hours although 45-60 minutes would probably be long enough.
Heat the oil in a frying pan and place the duck breast in it, skin side down.
Cook for about 5 minutes until the skin is browning and crisping.
Remove the duck and keep warm while it rests and then slice thinly to make two servings.
Meanwhile, pour all the liquid from the bag in to the pan and reduce to a syrupy sauce to pour over the duck.
- GGG is 4 parts fresh root ginger (peeled and roughly chopped), 2 parts garlic (peeled) and 1 part green chillies (de-seeded). Put everything in a food processor and whizz to a rough paste. Freeze in teaspoon portions and use in curries and oriental dishes.