Archive for July, 2009

You say tomahto, I say tomayto

Chilled Oyster Bay

It’s been a long time since I’ve had a truly relaxing weekend – and now that the sun is shining, a full day of no commitments (work, play or otherwise) meant I could finally schlep about doing whatever I wanted. And one thing that had been at the top of my list – apart from just soaking up the rays in the garden – was to put my new Imperia pasta-making machine to use! My lovely boyfriend had bought it for my birthday, complete with a recipe book, and we’ve been itching to make and eat some homemade pasta for weeks and weeks. Finally, today was the day.

And it wasn’t as disastrous as I’d imagined. Just a little bit of egg threatened to (and eventually did) escape the flour ‘volcano’ as I mixed the two together, but eventually a nice smooth dough was formed. And with the machine clamped and ready, it only took, er, three of us to effectively roll out some pasta – one to hold down the machine (as the clamp was, frankly, pretty useless), one to feed the dough in and catch the dough coming out, and one to turn the handle. It was pretty hilarious… can’t quite get my head around rolling out pasta all by my lonesome just yet!


A simple bolognese sauce had been simmering away very nicely all afternoon – made with huge punnets of intensely sweet vine tomatoes (for once, Sainsbo’s has proven useful with their vittoria vine toms reduced to 99p each – and each packet had 10% extra!). A quick blanch in boiling salted water later, the pasta (tagliatelle) was ready and tossed with the bolognese. Gorgeous. All it needed was a grating of parmesan.

Simple salad

A simple side salad with veg box ingredients – mixed leaves, cucumber and yet more tomatoes – provided the obligatory fresh veg quota, gently dressed with good extra virgin olive oil and some blueberry vinegar I’d obtained from Vienna’s Naschmarkt a few months back. The tartness of the vinegar is absolutely marvellous (and a very pretty deep magenta colour).


And to use up the remaining tomatoes, a very garlicky (ie just the way I like it) bruschetta. One of my favourite things in the world.

Monopoly City

Dessert was little espresso cups of cranachan, which I forgot to take pictures of. After the sun went down, we retreated back indoors to continue our game of Monopoly City. Despite having a modest portfolio, managed to sweep the competition off its feet (at 4-8 million at a time) to end up with a fat wad of cash. What a way to end the day!

Here’s to more blogging throughout the summer.


July 4, 2009 at 11:57 pm 7 comments


A freelance journalist and full-time gourmand, eating her way mostly through London and Hong Kong.

Current location: London


Charmaine currently digs: the smell of coffee; adding ponzu to everything; bill granger; still eating natto with every meal; caressing her Nikon FM2n.



July 2009
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