Saturday, September 24, 2011

US Satellite warning

"some things that have re-entered have sharp edges, so don't try to pick them up," said Mark Matney, an orbital debris scientist from Nasa's Johnson Space Center.

Let me tell you something Mister Matney, if a US Satellite the size of a fcuking bus has just landed on my house and fcuking vapourized it, getting a cut finger is the least of my troubles YOU TWAT!

Pear tarte tatin

Pear tarte tatin

If you have an ovenproof frying pan (or one with a removable handle), you can use it both to caramelise the pears and to cook the tart, though a heavy, fixed-bottomed baking tin will do. Makes a 20cm tart.

1 packet ready-roll all-butter puff pastry
4-5 pears, ripe but still firm
80g unsalted butter
80g caster sugar
Juice of half a lemon

Heat the oven to 220C/425F/gas mark 7. Roll out the pastry and, using a plate as a template, cut out a disc around 23cm in diameter (or 1cm larger than your pan or tin). Prick a few times with a fork, and refrigerate.

Peel, halve and core the pears, then cut into thick wedges or fat chunks. Melt the butter with the sugar in a deep, heavy-based frying pan (of about 22cm in diameter, if you are using an ovenproof pan in which to bake the tart). Add the lemon juice and pears, and cook on medium-high heat, turning the pears from time to time and taking care not to break them. Cook until golden and tender, and the caramel is reduced to a thick sauce that just coats the fruit, about 20-25 minutes.

Arrange the pears cut-side up in the pan (or baking tin or tarte tatin dish, in which case scrape in all the caramel, too), cramming them together, and set aside until cool.

Drape the pastry over the pears, tuck it in around the sides of the pan to enclose the fruit, and bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown. Leave to cool for five minutes, run a knife around the sides and carefully invert the tart on to a plate. Let it stand for five minutes more, then serve on its own, or with cream, clotted cream or ice-cream.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Lansley's statement is dishonest

Headlines in todays papers saying that the NHS is writing off a £12 billion IT contract are totally misleading and an attempt to rubbish the Labour Party.
Here's the truth. The system is NOT being scrapped. The NHS is keeping "Spine" – which stores patients' care records, NHS email – the secure email system for the entire NHS, "Choose and Book", the appointment booking service, and Picture Archiving and Communications Service – which allows for the transfer of X-ray pictures. These were all developed as part of this IT contract.

Lansley's statement is dishonest

Friday, September 09, 2011

EU Madness

A nurse from Eastern Europe who has not worked for 20 years by law HAS to be allowed to work in the UK even though their knowledge is totally out of date and therefore of considerable danger to patients.

However a UK nurse who has not worked for THREE years is legally required to attend and pass a Return to Practice Course/update before they can be re-registered and allowed back on a ward.

WHO do you want to nurse you?

Sunday, September 04, 2011


From the archive. Tuesday, November 11, 2008

My car doesn’t have the multimillion pound technology that enables the pilot of a fighter jet to see its target many miles away in pitch darkness. Neither, I’d hazard a guess, do white vans and many other vehicles on my daily journey to work in the dark. Furthermore, not being a Super Hero, I don’t have X-Ray vision, (or the ability to pat my head and stroke my stomach in clockwise circles simultaneously.)

I’d always thought that street lights were a remarkably sensible invention as they would (surprisingly) illuminate the streets when it’s dark. Regrettably my local council differs. They need to save money (no doubt the “fact-finding” tours to exotic Caribbean islands are a much higher priority). Of course switching off the lights isn’t publicised as a way of containing their budget, it’s proclaimed as a “Green Initiative” by the expensively hired marketing consultants.

Consequently pedestrians and unlit cyclists manage to disappear in the gloom and deep shadows of the early morning, when most sensible people are still in bed.

The great thing about headlights on cars is that the cost of switching them on is almost negligible, unlike domestic electricity bills which often equal the size of a City banker’s annual bonus. They enable me to see the cyclists and pedestrians before I run them over and upset my boss by being late arriving at work.

So, can someone explain to me why it’s apparently cool to drive with only sidelights on in the pitch dark?

Put Your Lights On!