Fiction with food on the side

From Michelle Gallen’s second, Factory Girls, set in 1994 Northern Ireland during the Troubles, at page 68:

“Pasta had only arrived in town when Maeve was thirteen. Her Auntie Mary’d told her mam that cooking pasta was dead easy – you just boiled it like spuds. So Maeve’s mam’d always boild their pasta as long and hard as a pot of potatoes. Until Maeve’d learned to cook pasta in school she’d no idea that pasta wasn’t supposed to be a sticky pile of porridge-colored worms on the cusp of disintegration. That experience had taught Maeve the value of following instructions – or at least reading them to get an idea of how far she could deviate from the rules without things ending in disaster. So, as the Bolognese sauce packet instructed, Maeve sliced an onion while browning minced beef. The packet advised her to splash some red wine on the meat for flavor. She’d no wine handy, so she splashed a bit of vodka into the pan, then poured herself a vodka and Coke as the meat sizzled. When it was nicely browned, she put the pasta on to boil, then opened the Bognese sauce packet and dusted the orange powder over the beef. She added another splash of vodka and stirred until the mixture turned a kind of fluorescent orange. It smelt deadly and Maeve was pleased that the whole thing had taken under fifteen minutes. She was grating cheddar when the doorbell rang.”


Fiction with drink on the side.

The Thursday Murder Club series continues. Richard Osman, The Bullet That Missed, page 254:

"Mike Waghorn pours himself a glass of cider. He doesn’t really drink cider in public; it doesn’t look right. In public, he drinks champagne, good wine, the sort of stuff people would expect Mike Waghorn to drink. A beer if he’s fitting in with the lads at a corporate do.

"But when Mike was a teenager, he would only drink cider, and as he gets older he finds himself returning to it. He has tried expensive cider, you can get that now. Waitrose does one, but really, the cheaper the better with cider. The one he is currently drinking is from a two-liter plastic bottle. He has poured it into a heavy cut-glass decanter, just for appearances, but he might stop doing that soon as well. Who is he trying to fool? There is no one here, so he can only be fooling himself.

“He washes down his arthritis pills, then his beta-blockers, and his gout medication. You’re not supposed to drink alcohol with any of them, but no one is going to stop him.”