- Hogmanay origins and practices:
It's life's most easily forgotten lesson: boozing begets hangovers. Still, if you've awoken with what feels like a Frankenstein-sized bolt through your head, and a mouth like a gravel pit, then at this stage you need no reminder. No, you'll be looking for some magic fix. Everyone has their own hangover cure, from Alka Seltzer to champagne. Here's some for starters:
Sleep, Water and Exercise
The sensible approach. Make sure you pick up a couple of litres of water when you make that trip to the off-licence. Take some soft drinks to the party (or drink some water). Take a walk in the park (no really, Edinburgh parks). Another alternative is the sauna & massage, now we're talking hard core relaxation!
Mind over body
Not very helpful this. Involves denying the existence of said affliction. Some believe that hangovers are good for creativity. Indulge in some escapism. Go to the movies.
Hair of the dog
Have you ever wondered where this expression came from? When bitten by a mad dog the Romans believed that a good antidote was to drink a potion containing burnt hairs from the same dog. Hence "hair of the dog". The same principle is applied to drinking and hangovers.
Some swear by champagne for the morning after: it's the bubbles, you know. There are also these time-honoured recipes: Morning Glory, Black Velvet, Bloody Mary, Banana & Orange Smoothie and Hair of the Dog.
Reputedly good for whisky hangovers. Heat a pint of buttermilk, stir in a tablespoon of cornflower, and add a pinch of salt, pepper or seasoning.
Double whisky Small absinthe 1 egg 2 teaspoons of sugar syrup lime & lemon
Half Guinness Half extra dry champagne.
Bloody Mary Single vodka Tbsp of sherry Tomatoe juice 2 teaspoons lemon juice 1 teaspoon Worcester Sauce Tabasco sauce Salt and pepper
Banana and orange smoothie
2 Bananas (frozen 1 hr) Orange Juice (Blend till smooth).
Hair of the Dog
Single whisky Double cream 1 tablespoon of honey
And if you wish to test the quality and type of Hangover you have this is a recent review of just such manual.
The book quotes P.G. Woodhouse who identified six types of hangover: The Broken Compass, The Sewing Machine, The Comet, The Atomic, The Cement Mixer and The Gremlin Boogie. Crawford helpfully provides a series of tests for the reader to identify the type of hangover that he (or she) is suffering from and then goes on to suggest recipes and remedies to help that particular affliction.
There are over one hundred recipes and there are some really interesting names. Reading some of these might make the hangover sufferer feel slightly worse, but the consumption of the dish would remedy this I feel sure.
I look forward to trying out, Cardamom Porridge with Spicy Apple Sauce, Blue Cheese on Toast with Pears and Pickle and Scrambled Eggs with Caramelized Onion and Feta Cheese.
The book does not claim that these recipes will provide a full 'cure' for the hangover, but one senses that with this food inside you then you will definitely be on the road to recovery.
The author, Milton Crawford, was born in Africa and lives in London from time to time. He says that when he is not drunk, he reads, writes, cooks, travels and swims.
The book ends with the author's suggested way to spend "an ideal hangover day". So he does try to cover all your needs! It is a fun little book and one that would make an ideal stocking present.
The Hungover Cookbook is published by Square Peg (part of the Random House Group) at a suggested retail price of £6:99.