Monday, October 16, 2006

This Week

It was a short week in London as we headed off to France on Thursday for a long weekend and to check on the house. It started a little disastrously Saturday with braised rabbit - the fault was definitely with the animal and not the recipe but it was disappointing for it to be inedible. We'd had smoked salmon sandwiches for lunch and settled for fried egg sandwiches for dinner - actually pretty good but not in the original plan.

Sunday we had toast and coffee with the papers then, to make the most of the sunshine, we went out for lunch at the Wheatsheaf - also at Borough - and had what was possibly the best Sunday pub lunch ever. Roast beef, yorkshire puddings, great veg and hot fresh gravy - all the produce comes from the market and it was cooked to perfection. We were less than entirely hungry Sunday night but we did manage hot roast pork with crackling served with a parmesan barley risotto and roast spiced butternut - but in teeny tiny portions.

Monday was yoghurt and cereals and coffee for breakfast, same till Thursday, then cold roast pork, barley and butternut for lunches till Wednesday. Monday evening Marie came to dinner and we had carrot and coriander soup - carrots being in season and the flavour being delightful, followed by grilled steak of such immensity that we were all defeated before we could finish served with onion salad, green salad and crusty bread. After a small pause we could manage chocolate truffle cake with crème frâiche and a little of the hard cheese we had got from the Italian cheese stall.

Tuesday we had leftover soup and toast and chocolate truffle cake as the mountain of washing up from Monday had momentarily banished my will to cook. It was a fine supper. Lunch was the same as Monday with the added bonus of cake for morning tea.

Wednesday we went out for pizza.

Thursday we flew to Biarritz after grilled steak sandwiches at the airport then we had dinner at the local café when we reached the village.

Friday is market day in our town so we wandered down and bought lots of veg, including black new potatoes and whole beetroots that had been roasted in a wood oven and went back to the gîte for bread and local sunflower honey for breakfast in the sun on the terrace. Warm enough there to have a bbq that evening with sausages and the next night with magret. Holiday bliss.

Caught up with the village gossip through various sources - seems the butcher's wife had an affair with the local bar owner and now the butcher's has closed because they had been spending so much time in the restaurant of their daughter in the next village that the owner wanted them out almost as much as they wanted to go. We had a damned fine lunch there on Saturday - they specialise in local meat and the butcher, who was a fairly cheerless soul in the shop is now tucked away in the kitchen creating startlingly good food while his wife revels in the attention she garners front of house. Seems balance is restored and a marriage is saved.

Back in London Sunday night we ended up throwing away broccoli, brussel sprouts, a few sugar snaps and a pint of milk but not too bad really. The tub of cream went into the freezer.

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