Saturday Kitchen 21.4

(by peter)

It was a blustery old day by the sea in Portsmouth this week filming for Saturday Kitchen – but at least I learnt three things.

The Royal Navy salute with their palms facing their face – apparently to hide their dirty hands (according to some sailors who happily informed us of this fact while we were filming). The Army, by contrast, salute with a flat hand.

HMS Victory, Nelson’s flagship at Trafalgar, the ship on which he died, is the oldest commissioned warship in the world – still officially in service, and with a designated captain. It is now permanently docked in Portsmouth just yards from the new museum being built around the remnants of the Mary Rose, which is shortly to go on display with artefacts salvaged from the wreck, including nit combs with nits still attached… Fascinating, in a gruesome sort of way.

Finally, Bryn Williams and Shaun Rankin don’t half know how to cook.

Jersey royal Shaun was cooking sea bass poached in confit lemon butter with asparagus and oysters. This I paired (to the strains of Blue Moon…) with the zingy, thoroughly satisfying Errázuriz Estate Reserva Sauvignon Blanc 2011, Aconcagua (£7.49, widely available though we filmed in Waitrose).

‘It’s cracking,’ commented Shaun, who declared himself a Sauvignon lover. ‘It’s nice and sharp to cut through the richness.’

‘I do love this – a bit of a bargain even at £7.49,’ added James. Bryn, meanwhile, described the match as, ‘beautiful.’

For Bryn’s roast loin of lamb, peas, lettuce and bacon with wild garlic peso I chose the inky, succulent M&S Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 (£8.99, M&S).

Bryn, bless him, was fulsome in his praise. ‘He’s not wrong – it’s a beautiful wine, goes really well with the lamb: he’s picked a good one,’ he enthused.

‘A good drinking wine, not just with food,’ pointed out James, while Shaun termed it, ‘a cracking wine, tones the wild garlic down’.

William Gaminara, star of Silent Witness, got his food hell (salt and pepper breaded squid with chilli dip and coriander salad), which I put with the Finest Steillage Riesling 2010 (£6.99, Tesco).

‘Another great wine: I have to say we’ve had some great stuff on the show today,’ commented James, very kindly.

You can view my wine excerpts from the show in the videos below, reproduced by kind permission of BBC1/Cactus TV. Archive material from the original show came courtesy of Rick Stein, Celebrity MasterChef and Keith Floyd. You can find all the show’s recipes via this link, which also include lemongrass and coconut panna cotta with coconut meringue and mango plus griddled fillet steak with béarnaise sauce.