Sage Words – Royally Cagey Cooking

This week’s Sage, The Goat Herd, likes to refer to herself as the Prince Charles of the Homestead kitchen. As someone with very little interest in cookery (and a firm belief she is  kitchenly impaired), she is often heard declaiming her hope that The Milk Maid will retain full use of her culinary marbles until Farm Girl is ready, willing, and able to accept the ceremonial spatula and spangly toque blanche. The rest of us feel she’s speaking utter rubbish; she is a totally competent cook with (and this is the important bit) wonderful taste but there’s simply no telling her. She’ll happily allay our unplaced but very real fears by calculating the stress load the water tank places on our pump shed without batting an eyelid and with utter confidence, but sauteing onions gets her all of a lather.


She’s pretty good at choosing conversation-promoting words, though. These ones are particularly resounding to one of the older Homesteaders who, as sparkly eyed youngster, was hell-bent on saving the world and didn’t care who knew it. From the nuclear issue to littering to use of plastics to organic vegetables, their very loud, impassioned opinions, predictions and proclamations echoed, although utterly sincere and with only the best intentions, tended to have the opposite of the desired effect. Luckily age, experience, and not a little despondency taught the valuable lesson that the wonderful Mr Pratchett summed up in a small handful of words. If you stomp around telling people what’s good for them you get nowhere. You do a lot better quietly getting on with practising what you were preaching – which is how we ended up where we are now; namely eating The Goat Herd’s homemade Chicken Vol-au-vents.


Can’t cook?? Pshaw!!


15 thoughts on “Sage Words – Royally Cagey Cooking

  1. Hi, Making chicken vol au vents is a mountain I am not about to climb. And can I just say, it is amazing how the mysterious hand of fate works. I have spent some time today puzzling over the clue “savoury puff” in the acrostic puzzle I have been attempting today. Your post provided the answer – ‘vol au vent.’ Thank you.

  2. Wonderful quotation! It a problem I grapple with as I work hard at reducing my carbon output. Nobody enjoys being lectured, that’s for sure. My solution has been to to describe what I am doing, pitfalls as well as triumphs, so I don’t come across as a Puritan. As for that chicken vol au vents…scrummy!

  3. Away again when this post came up (how do I manage this so often?) but am glad to chime in with praise for both quote and tabnat – vol au vents were in the GCBO last season (Great Canadian Bake Off) and look completely on the fiddly side for me. And I wholeheartely agree with the quote. I mean, it’s Terry Pratchett…

      • trotted all the way to a remote northern indigenous community about 150 miles north of home – Kingcome – to do some service projects. Made new friends, ate delicious food like fry bread and clam fritters, and learned to barbeque salmon without a bbq…(pics on my fb page for that), google might help with exactly where the village is. I keep planning to do a post or two about this summers travels but you know – best laid plans, etc – ]

      • Sorry, was so excited by the thought of the delicacy that I hit the wrong key😊 Not really a seafood girl but salmon….yummmm! Will check put the Facebook photos. You never know when you could be caught with a salmon and no bbq😊

  4. I do sympathise with the Goat Herd! I cook and I do it fairly well but I find it stressful and if I could ever give it up, I would. But of course, I’ll never be allowed to do that! The Vol-au-vents look wonderful!

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