London experienced something of a mini summer this weekend, temperatures climbed into the mid-twenties and it seemed like the entire town had already given up on London getting something remotely resembling a summer this year as no one seemed dress for this mini heatwave (including myself). To make matters worse, as part of my typical Saturday morning coffee break and errand running I had decided to drop some books off at Oxfam, so in addition to a rather heavy handbag I was also lugging a heavy bag full of old paperbacks around with me (which, once dropped off at Oxfam, was quickly replaced by heavy shopping bags). Well, desperate times call for desperate measures and all I wanted when I came home around lunchtime was something refreshing. I had picked up my umpteenth watermelon for this season and decided then rather than eating half my watermelon after my lunch, I would make the watermelon my lunch. My friend Verena had
As I was writing up this post, I came across this article by Nigel Slater on the ins and outs of preparing Gazpacho, the variations that exist and how even Spaniards disagree as to the correct preparation. This all made me feel a bit better about my somewhat bastardised version of a Gazpacho I was planning to make for dinner the other night. So why is my Gazpacho a bastardised version of the original? Well, while I tried to stay true to the essence of the dish, a chilled soup made from a combination of tomatoes, cucumber and peppers, I gave it a bit of a Mexican twist, a twist most Spaniards would likely frown upon. It all started out with remembering some dried ancho chilies I bought a while back. Ancho chilies (‘ancho’ means ‘wide’ in Spanish) are not very spicy at all, on a scale of 1 to 10 they get a mere 3/10 (although this can vary).
As I was finishing off at work today and given a rather small lunch my thoughts naturally turned to dinner and the eternal question of what I should cook for dinner (well, not that eternal for me given that I eat a fair amount of dinners at my desk in the office). Not knowing how my week would pan out, my weekly shop was pretty meagre this week. However, one staple I did pick up was cooked beetroot – perfect for throwing into goat’s cheese quesadillas, for use in sandwiches and as tasty bulk for any big salad bowls. Today I was keen to try something else though, beetroot pesto! A quick search on Tastespotting and Foodgawker did not reveal any inspiring recipes so I had to come up with my own. And fortunately, I had everything I needed for my made-up recipe at home (I leave it to you to decide whether what I had on hand may have