Spring is supposedly in the air and now seemed a good time to add a new addition of the four-legged kind to the household. Since our much-missed Jack Russell, Benji, passed away in December, we have felt that our new home was lacking something. We had always planned on homing a retired Greyhound, particularly since we visited a Greyhound ‘museum’ in Kansas a couple of years ago. Greyhounds are one of the most regal breeds, and rightly so, given their ancient heritage, however our adopted dog, Coney doesn’t seem to realise this.
When we visited our local Greyhound Rescue Centre, Clarks Farm (http://www.clarksfarmgreyhounds.org.uk/), we were extremely impressed with the professionalism and devotion of the staff, the kennels are amazingly clean and, most importantly of all, the dogs are happy. We walked several Greyhounds but found an affinity with one beautiful girl called Magic. We passed our home visit (I would like to say with flying colours AND I held back on the homemade chocolate chip cookies until after we had been told we were successful!) and collected her the following afternoon. She seemed happy but confused to be leaving her home of the last three months and laid on the back seat of our car with nary a whimper or a whine.
We had decided to rename her Coney as a tribute to my husband’s brother who passed away in February. One of his favourite places to eat was a fast food restaurant called Coney Island Hot Dogs. Not my own personal choice of fast foods, but I have observed my husband and his brother consume four or five of these scrawny, chilli-gunge covered dogs in one sitting – each! As we wanted Magic’s name to be special, my husband thought Coney had all the right connotations, he remembered many fun times eating Coney Island Dogs with his brother.
Of course, she is exactly as we expected and much more besides. She has many human traits and without wanting to anthropomorphise her too much, she is in many ways like her mistress: she growls when she gets woken up in the middle of the night, she comfort eats and she likes to preserve her energy as much as possible. She is a very picky eater though and has unusual tastes. Of course, being a Greyhound, one has to watch one’s figure but it is so hard to say no to custard creams or a decaying mouse down the lane. She is a dog though and dogs will eat when they get hungry so after a couple of days of being fed scraps of chicken and ham and turning her regal ant-eater’s nose up at her ‘delicious’ maintenance mix, she eventually relented and, when our backs were turned (for a lady doesn’t like to be seen scoffing in public), she daintily picked at her bowl.
Unfortunately, the food that is produced for dogs doesn’t seem to be as appetising as a Bean Burrito. Perhaps someone should design a range of dog food that has all sorts of gee-whizz flavours, Crème Brule, Taco Soup, Carrot Cake, Barbeque Beef Crisps...
Anyway, my preoccupation with Coney is the reason for my tardiness with posting over the last week or so, but I am currently writing an article about chocolate desserts and I have lots of new supper dishes to add, including a cornmeal, mushroom and Chorizo bake.