Cable Cars, Cameras and Computing » 3rd Wednesdays
By: Steve on July 19, 2012
So, this month we assembled in the mighty Turquoise Conference Room to hear Steve Shaw talk about what’s tripped his interest trigger in the past month and to tuck into some hefty home-baked pies from Nick Coomber.
First up, Steve introduced us to the now up-and-running Emirates Air Line cable car located in London’s docklands.
Emirates announced their sponsorship of the UK’s first urban cable car scheme last year and it was officially opened to the public on the 28th of June this year.
As a Londoner and a commuter, Steve’s observations are that it’s a fairly pricy cosmetic addition to the London landscape. The view from the car, on a nice day, can be fairly impressive but beyond that it doesn’t do much to service the commuter network, or even the tourist trade as the area around Royal Docks is a veritable hinterland of non-activity (my sincerest apologies to residents of the area).
Following that, Steve introduced us to a sports camera that packs an impressive amount of clout into its deceptively compact frame. I’ll hand over to Steve here:
I went snowboarding back in March and my fellow Motion Branding team member Ryan kindly leant me his Go Pro HD Hero Camera. If you’re not familiar with it it’s a tiny camera in a near indestructible plastic casing.
Armed with the belief that this tiny and amazing gadget would give me an extreme sports snowboard I went off to Les Dues Alpes in the south of france where I was quickly made to realise that there’s a real knack to using the camera.
Making sure it’s angled straight ahead when it’s strapped to your head might sound a bit obvious, but it’s essential that you check, otherwise you just get impressive HD footage of your feet!
Here’s a few of the best shots we got from the trip:
Unfortunately we had to curtail the talk because our to-do list right now is a bit big and urgent, which meant that Steve wasn’t able to tell us why the new MacBook Pro is the bees knees.
We found ourselves sans végétarien this month so Nick decided to simply eschew the veggie option and treated us to two sumptuously baked chicken and asparagus pies!
Nick’s been good enough to jot down the recipe for his pies, and they were a genuine delight, despite a late-night baking mishap that befell our baker:
“Had a little bit of a disaster with pre-baking the pastry: tried to cut corners and not use baking beans and just piercing the base with a fork. Unfortunately they shrank in the oven to the size of a small beer mat and I had to start again.”
Ingredients enough for two pies
• 500g/1lb 2oz puff pastry
• 1 free-range egg, lightly beaten
• plain flour
For the filling
• 1 onion, chopped
• 3 cloves garlic, chopped
• 30g Butter
• 60g of Dried porcini Mushrooms
• 150g fresh chopped mushrooms
• 1 orange, zest only
• 150ml/5fl oz dry white wine
• 2½ tbsp plain flour
• 600ml chicken stock
• salt and freshly ground black pepper
• 1400g boneless chicken, cut into small chunks
• 300ml/5fl oz double cream
• 900g asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1 inch pieces
• Bunch of fresh Parsley
• Rehydrate the porcini mushrooms
• Roast the chicken pieces in the oven with salt and pepper for 20mins or until evenly cooked
• For the filling, fry the onion and garlic gently in the butter until tender, without browning.
• Finely chop the porcini mushrooms (add the juice to the stock)
• Add the mushrooms, orange zest and white wine, and boil down until the wine has virtually disappeared.
• Sprinkle over the flour and stir for a few seconds, so it is evenly distributed.
• Gradually stir in the stock, to make the sauce.
• Season with salt and pepper.
• Stir in the chicken the chicken pieces
• Cover and leave to simmer away quietly for 10 minutes or so.
• Stir occasionally, then uncover for another five minutes, until sauce has thickened.
• Stir in the cream and cook for a final three minutes.
• Meanwhile, cook the asparagus lightly in salted water, until tender, but not floppy.
• Stir the asparagus and chopped parsley in with the chicken.
• Taste and adjust the seasoning.
• Spoon the whole lot onto a 2 large pie dishes lines with part-baked pastry
• Preheat the oven to 200C/Gas 7.
• Brush the edge of the pie dish with the beaten egg.
• Add the pastry lid to the pie
• Trim off excess, and press the pastry down all around the edge to seal.
• Make a hole in the centre so that steam can escape
• place in the oven.
• After 10 – 15 minutes, when the pie is golden brown, reduce the heat to 190C/Gas 5 and continue cooking for a further 10-15 minutes.
• Serve hot.
We were all in such a hurry to get back to our desks that we forgot to nominate next month’s speaker and baker, so it’ll be as much a surprise to me as it will be to you!