Friday, February 25, 2011

Flashback to 2003: VOTE TINTIN

This was street poster I designed back inna day. What with all the upheavals in the world going non right now I thought it was relevant to dig it out.

I love TinTin and all he stands for: fighting injustice, gangsters, drug smugglers, and standing by your friends no matter what, even when the chips are down and it looks like it's game over.


Roast that shit up

Okay -- for me the idea of roast veg is always erring a bit on the wanky/foodie territory but the other day I cooked up some beetroot, butternut, carrots and sweet potatoes with a few cloves of garlic and a coupla shallots. I chucked in a bit of thyme and a splash of olive oil and salt and pepper and bob's yer uncle...

best sandwich ever!

Big up all the motherfuckers working in delis in the rotten apple. I made a Katz' Deli sanger yesterday and it was so fine, t'was a good day (for recipe see above photo with a decent splash of mustard!).
Over to Ice Cube:

Just waking up in the morning gotta thank God
I don't know but today seems kinda odd
No barking from the dogs, no smog
And momma cooked a breakfast with no hog
I got my grub on, but didn't pig out
Finally got a call from a girl wanna dig out
Hooked it up on later as I hit the do'
Thinking will i live, another twenty-fo'
I gotta go cause I got me a drop top
And if I hit the switch, I can make the ass drop
Had to stop at a red light
Looking in my mirror not a jacker in sight
And everything is alright
I got a beep from Kim and she can fuck all night
Called up the homies and I'm askin y'all
Which park, are y'all playin basketball?
Get me on the court and I'm trouble
Last week fucked around and got a triple double
Freaking niggaz everyway like M.J.
I can't believe, today was a good day 

Monday, February 21, 2011

Ad Killaz R Loose (again)

Every time I think I've turned my back on advertising, something always sneaks up and pushes me back in. Nothing surprises me anymore and I've almost resigned to my fate. Deep down I love it...
Back in the 1980s I did a psychometrical test at some west end career centre and the result was that I should be in advertising. I didn’t really pay much attention to this information as I thought I was going to be a chef – plus, I didn’t even know what advertising really entailed as the name just evoked images of trade fairs and blue display boards. But the career as a chef never happened and, as I had a few good ideas knocking around my brain for various ads (‘Incogniteau’ – a photo of a Perrier bottle without a label) I went to art school and got my first advertising ‘book’ together... As this was the 80s, the only place I sent it to was Saatchi & Saatchi’s. They told me to keep it up and to learn more about the craft of advertising, which I did at St. Martin’s School of Art studying Graphics (Advertising) in the legendary Long Acre site, now a H&M flagship store - which is kind of says it all.

And recently I've started my biggest advertising project to date and so Ad Killaz R Loose, once again...

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Deep-fried Chicken Wings in Oyster Sauce

Okay so you can't have these more than once every couple of months, but these little fuckers are a proper discovery once you've bought the right oyster sauce. You  have to use Lee Kum Kee brand and definitely not Sharwood's or anything like that as they will just taste of shit you'll say I'm a crap cook. You can buy it a most supermarkets in the 'World Food' isle or just do the right thing and spend an afternoon in your local Chinese supermarket. (Pick up some frozen char siu buns also).

1 KG chicken wings, chopped into 3 (discard the tips)
vegetable oil for deep-frying
225ml/8fl oz/1 cup oyster sauce 
2 tablespoons groundnut oil

Deep-fry the chicken wings in hot vegetable oil for 10-20 minutes until they are crisp and brown. 

Remove, drain of oil, and then transfer them to a separate frying pan.

Mix together the oyster sauce and groundnut oil, and mix well.  

Pour this mixture over the chicken wings and mix well in the frying pan over a low heat until all the wings are well covered with sauce and are heated through.

Serve immediately as a starter.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Another Pizza Report

I made a couple of pizza using Elizabeth David's 1959 recipe yesterday. And although they were tasty it's mad how much tastes have really changed, but it's all good for my relentless quest to discover how to make the most tastiest Pizza out there.

Her base recipe:

225g Strong White Flour
10g yeast (I used 7g powdered)
1 Egg
10 tbsp Milk
2 tbsp Oilve Oil
2 tsp salt

Put flour, salt, and yeast in a bowl and make a well and add egg.
Start to mix and add milk and oil.
When is a doughy consistency knead for 10 mins.
Remove dough, wash bowl, dry and then smear with olive oil.
Put dough back in, cover with cling film and leave somewhere warm for a couple of hours.

For the topping:
Always keep it simple. Proper pizza's don't have a ton of different toppings, no matter what your local Pizza Hut or Rembrandt's tell you. Less is more...

Tomato Sauce

5 fresh tomatoes
2 cloves garlic

Stick it in a bowl and mash with a potato masher. I added a squirt of sun-dried tomato paste.

After the dough has risen, roll divide into two balls and roll out on a well-floured surface.

Grease/oil two 12" pizza tins and put in the rolled-out base.

Spread the tomato paste on the top and add:

Sliced tomato, black olives, anchovy and mozzarella


Sliced tomato, salami, red chili and mozzarella

Sprinkle with oregano and drip some more olive on on top.

Bake for 15 mins at 200.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Restaurant of the Week

Chez Kiki - Aux Deux Amis, 1 Rue D'Atlas, Bellville, Paris

I've been eating here since 2004 and this place serves the best couscous in Paris. Chose from beef, chicken or merguez (very tasty spicy sausage). It's a small spot and gets ram-jammed at launch times.

Not sure of the proper name of this place (if it's Chez Kiki or Aux Deux Amis) but it's  stone's throw from Belleville Metro and well worth schlepping east for.

Party/Book Launch of the week!

This is what it's all about! My pal and DJ Legend Danny Rampling is throwing a launch party like no other this thursday at the Embassy Club, to launch his how-to-DJ book.

He's putting his money where his mouth is and promoting fresh London DJ talent, which is so fucking cool to see.

Sign up for free:

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

(Sketch) Book of the Week!

A coupla years ago I created a sketchbook for Thames&Hudson. It was called the Urban Traveller's Sketch Book (currently £6.47 at Amazon), Hush did the cover and I gave a few out to different artists. One of my pals - Aussie legend Jimmy Dodd, has just send me some shots of how he used his! It is nice to see that someone is actually using it for what it was intended! He reckoned the paper was excellent and that he needs another!

This is what he said:

'I need to have a sketch book when I travel.  I'm constantly writing down ideas, making drawings, and generally plotting and scheming creative world domination.  It is one of the rare times that I spend drawing every day, which I really truly love.  My skills get a little tighter during these periods and it becomes all the more satisfying to be drawing more and more. This little book spent 8 weeks going in and out of my backpack during 2009 when I took a trip through Europe and North America.  It's full of notes for artworks, many of which I'm only just getting a chance to work on now, 2 years later.  I enjoy the images as a reminder of having spent time in various places.  It takes time to make a good drawing and that time is spent absorbing the surroundings, creating memories via urban osmosis.  I peel stickers off of things, write down passages of text for essays, copy famous artworks and tear out pages in exchange for things like beer, a place to crash or a haircut.  My sketchbooks become much more precious to me than my finished artworks.'

Monday, February 14, 2011

Short Film of the week

Photo(s) of the Week

These were taken 6 hours away from the capital of Mali in the middle of no-where. No running water or uninterrupted power-supply. This just goes to show that Brands have the power to travel like no-bodies business, as this lady had put on her sunday best as the village turned out to meet  us.  A fine time was had by all and they even sorted out some fish soup, which blew my head off... Pom Pom!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Flashback of the week: Radio Africa by Latin Quater

So I'm sat in Nandos with my kids and we're just tucking into a plate of Roulette Chicken Wings, when they start playing 'Radio Africa' on the sound system. OK, so it's an African themed restaurant so I guess that it's nothing unusual. But the last time I'd heard the tune was when a mate of mine, James Papa, was bang into Latin Quarter in the 80s and he used to try and educate me with sounds that I'd not have heard. It worked and he turned me onto some killer stuff, but I was never that into Latin Quater, except for 'Radio Africa'...

So 20 years later sat in a retail park somewhere in England in some South African chicken restaurant with my teenage kids, to hear the song was a bit of a blast from the past, and a bit more poignant as James died from AIDS at the end of the 80s. It was sweet to be unexpectedly reminded of a friend who has passed...

Friday, February 11, 2011

Book of the week! Voice of America by E.C. Osondu

I read this book this week and enjoyed every word. It's a collection of short stories about modern life for Nigerians at home and in America, and this journey makes it unique. I'm in love with Africa and it took me back to the red earth, through the stories that were never afraid to tell it like it is. 

Pepper Soup kept popping up and I'm researching the best recipe. Nom nom noms...

Meal of the Week! Prashad in Bradford!

I went to eat lunch in the Ramsay's Best Restaurant runner-up (should have fucking won!) Prashad in Bradford yesterday. Whatever you say about the rampaging ego called Gordon, good food is good food and Prashad served me up one of the most amazing vegetarian meals I've had outside of India.

I had the special thali and was completely stuffed, nose was running and my taste-sense memory was firmly back in Mysore (see above photo).

The service was impeccable and even though I'd not booked I got a table, and it does get busy.

The place is tiny (they open up another room next-door at night) and they do take-a-way - the most interesting thing is they have 'roadside' food on the take-a-way menu, and this is a first.

I love street food. I'm having this next!

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Photo of the Week (there is a pattern forming here!)

This old boy was sat at a bus stop bench on LeBrea in LA. Soon some old girl came and sat next to him and they started chatting. For me, this shows how segregated Los Angeles really is, as the busses are only used by the people with no money. LA is the worst place on earth to be if you are skint, but is also the best if you are rich and in the movie, music or art business. 

Monday, February 07, 2011

Album of the week!

One of the greatest 2 sides from Yard legend Barrington 'Come on!' Levy.
Not a single filler - all killer. All from the heart.

Produced by the amazing Linval Thompson and mixed by Scientist at Channel One Studios, JA.

Check it here:



Sunday, February 06, 2011

Spinach Dhal

I had a ton of these on the road in India (see post below)

Feeds 4-6

250g/9oz chana dhal
1 onion, chopped
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 teaspoons turmeric
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
5 curry leaves
4 teaspoons each of ginger and garlic pastes from a jar
4 large tomatoes, quartered
1 packet washed spinach
1/2 cauliflower, broken into florets
1 chicken or vegetable stock cube, dissolved in 400ml/14fl oz/1 3/4 cups water
2 chillies (red and green - chopped) 
1 small pot yoghurt
1 teaspoon garam masala
1 bunch fresh coriander, chopped

Soak the dhal in water for a few hours and then simmer for a couple of hours.

In a deep pan, fry the chopped onion in the oil until it is golden brown and almost burnt.
Then add the cooked dhal, spices, curry leaves, ginger and garlic pastes, and cook for 10 minutes.
Add the tomatoes, spinach, cauliflower, stock and chillies and then cook for an hour on a low heat, adding water if necessary.

Add the yoghurt and garam masala, and and sprinkle with freshly chopped coriander when you are ready to eat. Serve with basmati rice and pickles.

Notes from my Indian Notebook (1992-1993)

Hazy Scene of Delhi

As the flight nears India I notice that the Indians on board the plane grow in numbers and rudeness. Soon I feel like I'm the minority and then it hits me. I'm off to fucking India. But there's no need to panic as I'm trapped on this shitty Russian plane. Then we touch down and the 24-hour journey is over. I've reached India.
            As I step out of the plane into the hot, smoky, diesel filled New Delhi evening, the sky smearing red, I can tell just by the smell that I am out of my comfort zone. Welcome to the East. And then I try checking out through the Indian immigration: A block of 50 non-Indians all trying to to pass through a gap of 3 feet, after some guy checks your passport. The English, Aussies and Germans queue patiently and the Russians and French just ram-jam their way to the front, or at least they try to. The English et all will let them think they are getting through but then at the last moment we apply some pressure in a very linear fashion, shutting out the opposition trying to break through…. Anyway I make it out of the main doors into the 9-o-clock hazy darkness of Delhi, half expecting to be stormed by a thousand beggars, but only a few are clocked lying quietly by a wall. I get into my pre-paid taxi and into the swarms of traffic, everyone beeping, boys on vespas swerving near for a good look. By this time it’s been 48 since we’ve had a good 8 hours sleep in a real bed, and it’s all getting a little too much to take in. The driver can’t find the house. I start to panic , but eventually we arrive at A 1/10 Vasant Vihar, and are greeted by a hob-nailed booted baton wielding Group 4 security guard, as where we’re staying is at some diplomatic doctors house – a friend of my old man’s. ‘No one here!’ he barks at us. A servant arrives and I show her the letter from her master. As we are not expected, we are shown into the garage and given a couple of garden chars to sit on. Four hours in the garage, tea, water, fag after fag, they’ll be here soon becomes our mantra. The guard strolls up and down eyeing us suspiciously, tap-tapping his red-wooden baton in the palm of his hand.

Delhi-Jaipur Video Bus

Typical scenario: no sleep the night before, arms ache head’s blown. We take a rickshaw to Delhi bus station to be followed around by a mad woman beggar, begging tugging and board a luxury coach already needing a piss. It’s 5 ½ hours to Jaipur, mostly with the Bollywood video playing at full volume, no bass only mucho hissing treble. All along the road are huts for the lorry drivers to stop and wash and eat and drink. Pass a few guys lying on bare metal bed frames smoking the ganja in large hookahs, but all the time dying for a piss. We bomb past a brand-new 5 star service station and stop up the road at the worst shit hole you can imagine, but it’s a relief to rock a piss and on the way out of the toilet I see the guy from Moscow airport again.  I buy a samosa to find it’s filled with a slice of white bread. Home from home, like. 
I keep nodding out nodding off and when we get to Jaipur we find out that there are no seats on the busses to Pushka, Standing room only for a 3 hour trek. We meet a rickshaw driver called Freedom and he becomes our guide to Jaipur. We know he’s as lairy as fuck and shouldn’t be trusted but we’re enjoying the ride and appreciated the insider’s knowledge. Everything chills out for a bit and what seems like a totally shit-hole ram-jammed with beggars and buggers, turns out to be a nice place and it seems a pity to leave, but we want to fly Air India from the mud hut airport to Goa. The pink city rushing.

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Street Knowledge hits Down-Under

Here's my mate Jimmy Dodd, one of the featured artists in the book, at the studios of the University of Southern Australia. Behind him is a mental mural that he's helping to create for a wall of a Childcare Centre in Adelaide, with 25 or so University students. Street art has travelled far!