Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Baboon Business

Many of you will be aware that we had the #IOWTweetUp this weekend with @TourGuideTed, @BooBooBearGreen, @MarthaBBear and @TabithaTeddy. Well my camera played up so I didn't get many pictures, but anyway I think TGT has shown pictures of what we did.  There was, however, baboon business (aka baboonery) and I did get some pictures of that!!

Many of you will have heard about Bob the Bolting Baboon.  Yes Bob is TGT's little baboon and he managed to get himself lost when he arrived.  We wondered whether he felt a bit surrounded by bears and wanted to find other baboons, but then why was he found in a bear shop!!  You got that one wrong Bob!!  Well anyway, Bob was found and our manperson retrieved him and brought him to the TweetUp.  TGT was very relieved.  Mini-Kolo didn't let him out of his sight until he could reunited him with TGT, who was very glad to see him.

In order to keep Bob in order, and maybe to make him feel he has baboon company, we rehomed Bob's sensible twin brother with him, he is the one on Mini-Kolo's right, Bob is on the left.  We hope this may stop Bob from bolting again.  TGT will let us know when Bob's twin has told them his name.

Mini-Kolo did manage to meet up with some rehomed baboons and rehomed a baboon with @TabithaTeddy, that was the last planned rehoming.

Here Mini-Kolo is meeting up with the already rehomed baboons.  You aleady know Bob and his new brother.  Hanging over Mini-Kolo's shoulder is Tony, BooBoo's baboon, and sitting in front of Mini-Kolo is Barney, Martha's baboon.  Barney likes to hold onto his spoon, these baboons with magnetic paws, like Barney and Tony, have been known to steal cuttlery from resturants so it is best if they bring their own.

Here the baboons are joined by Tabitha's new baboon.  She is a girl baboon who loves books and stories so we felt she would be happiest with Tabitha.  Tabitha will also let us know her name when she has told her.

Tabitha's baboon is number 102 and Bob's new brother is baboon 103.  Despite us taking a rehoming break baboons 104 and 105 are on their way to their new homes in the US and we will let you know when they have arrived.

Sunday, 13 July 2014

Pasta with zucchini and egg plant

The first thing to say here is that in England we call zucchini courgettes, which is the French word for it rather than the Italian word.  We call egg plant aubergine, referring to its colour rather than its shape.  I will use those words in this blog.

A Twitter friend asked me to give her this recipe.  I normally cook this with peppers, leek and mushrooms (I have blogged it before).  However, our friend cannot eat peppers so when she came to visit us a Baboon HQ we couldn't cook this recipe for her.  We were given courgettes and aubergines lately so I tried a new version of the recipe that she can eat.

This was a joint effort so, being an organised baboon Edward got the ingredients ready.  Here are the ingredients for two:

8 oz pasta
1 leek
1 aubergine
1 large or two small courgettes (we were given some fancy yellow ones but the green ones will be equally nice)
1/4 pint of yogurt
Two table spoons of olive oil
Some lemon juice to taste
Black pepper (plenty)
Later you will need some hard cheese (I don't add salt in the cooking because I use a salty cheese), the original recipe said 2 oz of cheese but I use much more to give it a nice crispy topping.

Being organised Edward also wanted to show you most of the equipment you will need:

You need two large saucepans, a pyrex or other oven proof dish, wooden spoons, table spoons, a vegetable knife and a cheese grater.

Yaya is safe using knives so he prepared the ingredients.  Chop the leek into small pieces and the aubergine and courgettes into bite sized pieces.

We found that the courgettes needed a bit more frying than the leek and aubergine so, heat up the olive oil in a pan and fry the courgette gently for five minutes, add the aubergine and leek and fry gently for a further seven minutes.  Turn your grill onto quite a high heat.

In the meantime boil the pasta and grate the cheese.  When the vegetables are fried turn the heat off and add the yogurt, black pepper and lemon juice to taste (just a sprinkle).

Mix the vegetables in their sauce with the pasta in an oven proof dish, the bigger the surface area the better because you can get more crispy topping, sprinkle the cheese on top.  Put the dish under the grill, after about 7 minutes I usually turn the grill up a bit to get a good crisp finish.  It should be under for about 15 minutes in total (not sure whether a gas grill might be a bit quicker, mine is electric).  You will need to see when it looks done.  Hoppo got all this ready to go under the grill.

Now looking at the next picture you might think that Marley has taken up some strange sport, but this is a warning.

These are sillicone oven gloves which our friend sent from Germany.  These are what you need!!  Getting pyrex dishes out from under the grill is a very hot business.  We used to wear two sets of well insulated cloth oven gloves and it was still too hot to handle.  With these sillicone oven gloves you don't feel a thing.  Marley got it out of the oven.


Here it is all ready to serve with a lovely crispy topping.  We think this new version is at least as good as the original version.  Hope you enjoy it!!