Slow Food London set a challenge: could regular Londoners go slow for an entire year? Would it be easy? Would it be hard? Would there be times when it would (slowly) start to go wrong?
Here, Susan Paul talks us through her forty-first week:
My husband made lots of the grated vegetable salad using: red onion, parsnip, swede, parsley and carrots and mixed with a dressing of plum vinegar, English mustard and rapeseed oil. We have found this to be a good thing to have in the fridge over the Winter months as it keeps very well for several days and is good to eat with many things – once this week with roast chicken; and another time with Aylesbury duck legs, and flageolet beans flavoured with garlic and rosemary; and also with a potato and soft cheese omelette and some rocket leaves. The leaves we have been buying at the farmers market from “Wild Country Organics” keep extremely well – at least a week and probably longer than that – they are good value too.
Other good things were: lemon sole, simply coated with seasoned flour and fried gently in a little butter with lemon, parsley and capers; roasted beetroot and Wild Country Organics rocket leaves with a dressing of blackberry vinegar and grain mustard;
Some unexpected but very welcome visitors meant a change to our plans including missing our usual shopping trip to the Barnes Farmers market and shops. We consequently found ourselves in the Walsingham Farm shop in Heacham, Norfolk where, I was surprised to find, we could buy enough “slow” food for the weekend and probably the whole week, and at a good price. This shop sells mainly local fruit and vegetables, local meat, fish, eggs and cheese and lots of locally made breads, pies (we bought a venison pie)and preserves amongst many other good quality local things. It was a pleasure to shop there and the food proved to be very good in terms of quality and value. We even bought some very tasty wine – Seyval Blanc, produced in Norfolk by Winbirri Vineyards.
This week’s British cheese we have tried is St Swithins, Norfolk soft cream cheese that I mixed with some fresh crabmeat, lemon and chives, which have just recently made an appearance in our garden, to make a delicious dip, which we ate with some spelt flour and sunflower seed toast.
More good things over the weekend included: the venison pie; some finely sliced leeks and bright green cabbage sweated and softened in butter; roast chicken and bread sauce; a pear dessert cake flavoured with elderflower cordial; a Mother’s day breakfast made by the children: very local and fresh poached eggs, local bacon, local sourdough toast and pea puree made with frozen, small English peas; oysters and a roast beef lunch overlooking the sea – all these things were delicious, particularly the breakfast, and were very much appreciated.
My husband has resurrected our pasta machine and has promised to make more fresh pasta next week.