I have loved pretending it is summer this week. I am loving the blossom, bulbs popping up, sun on my back and the arrival of English summer food.
My purple sprouting has finally sprouted in abundance and worked brilliantly in a beetroot, watercress and english tomato salad. It’s great to see the garden vegetables thriving and knowing that with a few leafy greens I’ll be able to create a meal throughout the summer.
This Sunday I abandoned the traditional roast in favour of a summery version. I roasted the chicken as usual, but served it with a selection of salads. Firstly a panzanella, an italian bread salad, made with croutons of sourdough and english tomatoes. A wild garlic pesto made with handfuls of the stuff filling woodland banks at the moment. I just whizzed this together with toasted pine nuts, parmesan and some local rape seed oil. For me the epitomy of Summer came with the alarmingly early English asparagus, roasted in the oven, may it be the first of many. Next up was the turn of English strawberries, good but not as good as they hopefully will be.
Of course as in all good English summers we choose the cloudy day to make our pilgrimage to Winstones ice cream on Rodborough. It’s here that the children behave like they’ve never eaten an ice cream before and we all scoff down in excitement our blackberry and cream ice cream, and then promptly head home to find our jumpers and light a fire.