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26.09.2012 08:26
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Of dormice and men

It may not be a nightmare of Darfur or Falluja proportions, but Glis glis - or edible dormouse - is reportedly causing pandemonium in Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire and Buckinghamshire. Stockbrokers in what canada goose coat - hybridge lite is rapidly becoming known as the "Tring triangle" are barely able to sleep at night for the scurrying of tiny dormice feet in their lofts, and one millionaire has even had to cut down seven of his apple trees because can i put my canada goose jacket in the dryer the fruit was encouraging the menace. It is an affecting tale.

The dormouse, which occurs in France, Spain, Greece and Iran, was introduced to Britain by a crazy amateur naturalist called Walter Rothschild, canada goose coat 1000 calorie a day meal plan who was famous for driving around Hertfordshire in a carriage driven by a team of zebras, in 1902. He unaccountably let six (dormice, not zebras) loose in Tring Park. Helped by litters of up to a dozen, there are now reckoned to be several hundred thousand running wild in the Home Counties, eating golf bags and relaxing in canada goose coat 1000 the shade of apple trees. Inexplicably, they are a protected species, and all sorts of bureaucratic hoops have to be jumped through if you want to best fake canada goose jacket eliminate them. Far easier, it seems, to cut down the apple trees instead.

All of which amounts to a missed opportunity, because the great click cg thing about the edible dormouse is that it is, as the name suggests, edible. Indeed, the Romans considered it a great delicacy. "Stuffed dormouse is stuffed with a forcemeat of pork and small pieces of dormouse meat trimmings, all pounded with pepper, nuts, laser [a spice], and broth," wrote Apicius, the Gordon Ramsay best ideas buy a canada goose jacket online about canada buy canada goose jacket uk goose outlet on pinterest of imperial Rome. "Put the dormouse thus stuffed in an earthen casserole, roast it in the oven, or boil it in the stockpot." Delicious. Apparently, it still appears regularly on the dinner tables of Croatia. So why not Aylesbury and Luton?

"Dormice were very popular in Rome," says Anna del Conte, a gastronomic historian and cookery writer who specialises in Italian food. "They were farmed for the tables of the rich and buy canada goose parka cheap featured in the famous banquet of Trimalcione [in the Satyricon]. But at some point, they went out of fashion. They do not feature in the cookbooks of the Middle Ages, and sadly I have never tasted them. But I think they could be very tasty with the right dressing, wild and gamey. Someone in Hertfordshire should start a farm."

Cristina de Giorgi, one of the owners of Italian restaurant Secco in Newcastle, is less convinced by Apicius's recipe. "It would be very fiddly to skin," she says,"and I'm not sure buy canada goose jacket online canada you'd want to see a dormouse on a plate. It might be better to use the meat to make a pâté. I don't think there'd be a market for it in Newcastle, though that doesn't mean it's not good. Perhaps we could do it as a special gourmet evening."

So let's get eating - and help the tormented golfers of Beaconsfield to sleep at nights.

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