Collective Noun: A Harass of Holidays

Niknaks on a roll, *totally* befitting a man who claims to write a food blog.

Holidays have changed over the last couple of years.

These days if you don’t social media the shit out of every mozzarella ball that lands in front of you, there’s this overriding fear that no-one will know you actually had a good time. And in our socially-networked era where pictures of you looking great in a pair of Wayfarers is social currency – its a miracle that any of us get anything done in-between all the instagramming. Fuck you hipsters, you’ve made it impossible to just go and be somewhere without it having to be the Blog Event Of The Year.

It also means that I’ve painted myself into something of a corner, because I’m desperate to tell this story about how a carnivorous bantam stole a piece of ham from a sandwich I happened to be eating at the time, but I can’t now because I’m too busy being righteously indignant.

The second anyone so much as tweets that they’re off to some remote beach in the middle of wherever-the-fuck, it basically means we can all strap ourselves in for an atomic stream of smartphone-snapped cocktails on some seemingly art-directed beach with painstakingly photoshopped de-sat contrast, studiously ‘Oh, what? There’s a camera? Psssh…’ expressions, and a new profile pic that’s been culled from a photo-roll of about a billion, especially chosen to make the person in it look thin.

I was recently stopped at the first Neighbourgoods Market of the year by someone who asked me why I’d gone so quiet over the last couple of weeks. Of course the answer was that I was on fucking holiday and that I was kinda too busy doing that to be preoccupied with how I was going to tweet about it.

Said the guy. With a blog.

Next week I’ll tell unicorns and fairies to go fuck themselves, I promise.

Now of course my hypocrisy-o-meter has totally just gone off the scale, because if I didn’t write about things that happen to me on weekends away and special dinner parties and all that stuff, this little corner of the Internet would suddenly dry up into three mediocre dick jokes and a grainy picture of my cat. Maybe it’s just because there seems to be such a huge amount of hysteria around the end of the year and where you’re going and with who and for how long, that it seems to have become the massive Internet *event* that it is, based on ultimately not much. I don’t know. Maybe I’m just grumpy today. It’s entirely possible that someone messed with my yoghurt this morning and now I just think everything in the world is crap.

I guess my point (such that it is), is that if something fucking insane and unique and wondrous and brilliant happened to you while you were on holiday, then sure … tell me about it. But you know what? That picture of your feet you took in the toilets of that club you went to doesn’t fall into any of those categories. Just the fact that you went on holiday isn’t enough to warrant trying to dress it up as the greatest thing that’s happened to humanity since the invention of the toilets in that club you went to, on every social media platform you can get your hands on.

Okay – enough of that, I’m tired now, and have probably alienated just about everyone who reads this blog. So, here’s the best thing you can do with some cubed kudu. So much so that I think the new collective noun for kudu should be ‘kebab’. To go along with ‘a flange of baboons’ – which is a real thing by the way…

Spicy Kudu Kebabs

If I'd taken this picture on a mountain top, the things in it would still have tasted pretty nice.


1 kg of cubed kudu (or other venison)


2 fat cloves of garlic

2 tsp of cumin seeds

2 tsp of coriander seeds

2 tsp of fennel seeds

2 tsp of smoked paprika (if you’re struggling to find any, Woolworths have it in a small red tin in their spices section)

2 tsp of dried thyme

4 tsp of lemon juice

4 tbsp of olive oil

1 large red pepper

Pain Greek yoghurt

Freshly chopper coriander or parsley



12 bamboo kebab skewers


What to do


Peel the garlic cloves and cover them with some salt, then, using the blade of a flat knife, crush the garlic into the salt so that it absorbs the juices and forms a thickish paste. Mix up the garlic salt paste with the kudu, add a little more salt and a generous twist of freshly-ground black pepper.

Grind the fennel, coriander and coriander seeds into a powder, and in a bowl mix together with the paprika, lemon, olive oil and thyme. Mix this up with the kudu and put in the fridge for a couple of hours to get all intimate and stuff.

Meanwhile, soak the bamboo skewers in water, and slice up the red pepper into thickish chunks. Thread the kudu cubes onto the skewers alternating every now and again with pieces of red pepper, and lay them out on a roasting tray, covering with any remaining marinating juice.

Get the grill in your oven good and hot, pop the tray in and let it brown for about 20 minutes. Turning every seven minutes or so.

Once they’re out, drizzle with Greek yoghurt and sprinkle over the freshly shopped coriander, or parsley if coriander offends you. You can serve it with flatbreads if you like or just eat as they come.



2 thoughts on “Collective Noun: A Harass of Holidays

  1. Lovely recipe, it made me miss the insanely juicy kudu burgers at festival.

    As an aside, despite now feeling somewhat lame about both my wayfarers and my instagram habit I’m not sure I can give either up either at this time. Sorry.

    1. Oh my dearest Lauren, I’d never begrudge you your instagram habit, otherwise how the hell would I see pictures of Ireland looking all beautified and the like? All of which has become a very important part of my day. Like garage pies.

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