So it's Manchester today and probably for at least the next three years. No more pasties and Old Rosie scrumpy, now it's all meat and potato pie and creamy Boddington's.
What to cook on my first day 'oop North? Nothing that's what. By the time I arrived and got the essentials out of the boxes and bags I was too knackered to be rustling up a treat for my readers to slaver over - no, today it's the food of the common man, traditional Manchester food - kebab and chips - hoo-bloomin'-ray.
I should point out two facts. Firstly, unlike smaller towns and cities where the doner kebab is served in a pitta bread (a naff concoction which leaves one wanting more), the Manchester version generally comes in naan bread. This being because the local kebab shop owners are of either Pakistani or Bangladeshi descent and not Greek or Turkish as is often the case elsewhere. This means that the kebab is much bigger and the bread is fresher, crisper, tastier and generally much more my thing. Secondly, unlike Exeter where getting a kebab would require me to get out of the chair where I am sitting drinking beer, putting on some clothes to hide my unsightly body and leaving the house to go and buy one, this would be unthinkable here - everything comes delivered. Want a kebab and chips, no problem that will be 25 minutes. Fancy a curry, it's on its way. An eighth of weed and a large rock of crack? Of course sir, credit or cash?
I must say it was a fantastic kebab. I also had some chips and chicken pakora. The bill was only £5.30 so I had to order a Pepsi as well to make it up to the £6.00 minimum (I put this in the fridge for someone who is willing to drink the stuff - I'd rather eat worms than drink Coke or Pepsi).
So my culinary Odyssey moves to Manchester and this chapter opens with a kebab. I have had another kebab on my blog (a sheek kebab in Exeter see 10/1/2005) but there's enough of a difference here to justify me having the two as separate things. Read the other version and see that my prediction on price was accurate too... the doner kebab and chips would have been £'3.70, (the pakora cost £1.60) and it came via courier as well.
I'm not having a go at the city of Exeter itself, only the kebabs. If you want a good kebab you have to come North, they just don't do them right anywhere else.
Berry Flapjack: From Stafford Servives on the M6. Much better than the chocolate muffin my friend Laurie mistakenly decided on.