Monday, 3 March 2014

A day out



An early morning in Rye.

Last week, Séan and I took a trip to Rye. It’s an hour and a half or so from London, and in those miles we swapped London brick for black-and-white timbers, shrieking sirens for squawking gulls, organic quinoa muffins for homemade Victoria sponge.

I don’t drive and, with the advent of SatNav am no longer called on to assist in the misery of navigation, so I gaze out of the window reading the road signs – local names Peasmarsh, Appledore, Pett, Guestling and Winchelsea, rolling around on my tongue, soft and sweet like honey.

We had the good fortune to be there in Scallop Week so we ate scallops for lunch in a little café and brought some more home to cook for dinner.

I don’t know about you, but around about now – the mornings are lighter, afternoons linger, I dare sometimes walk the dog without wearing a hat – I have had quite enough of brown food. All of those stews, daubes, braises and casseroles which were so appealing only a few weeks’ ago no longer appeal. Something sparky. Bright colours. Fresh. So I made this salsa almost as soon as I got through the door. It takes only a few minutes or so and is very good.


Church Square


Stained glass window, St Mary the Virgin Church


A more modest window. This lovely bookshop is, indeed, minute.


A pretty display of succulents in someone’s front window. I’m never knowingly undernosy.


I find myself in agreement with this sign in one of Rye’s many antique shops.


The fishmonger and game dealers’ where we bought our scallops.


Scallops with mango and avocado salsa


This serves 2

3 spring onions, white and pale green part only, finely chopped
1 mango, peeled and diced
1 avocado, peeled and diced
1 small red chilli
½ small cucumber, diced
Small handful coriander, tough stalks discarded, roughly chopped
1 tsp finely minced fresh ginger
Juice of a lime
Flaky sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

As many scallops as you think you can eat - we went for 5 each
A bit of oil, a dab of butter
Wedges of lime to serve

To make the salsa, combine all of the ingredients, season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside while you cook the scallops.

Pat the scallops dry with kitchen paper. You can cut the coral off if you prefer. I don’t. I think it looks pretty, I like the taste and I’m not running a restaurant where such pernickertyness seems important.

Warm a large frying pan over a medium-high heat. Melt the butter and oil together. Season the scallops with salt and pepper and put them in the pan. The pan shouldn’t be crowded; do them in two pans if necessary. Fry for a couple of minutes until golden then turn and cook for a couple of minutes more. The most important thing is not to overcook them.

Serve the scallops immediately with some of the salsa and wedges of lime.

Debora and Louise Invite You to a Dog’s Dinner…

012 - 03 - Charlie & Barney jumping

Every fancied making healthy treats for your dog? Want to learn how best to use them in dog training? Join food writer Debora Robertson and dog behaviourist and trainer Louise Glazebrook in Debora’s pretty Stoke Newington kitchen for a lively afternoon of dog chat, tea and cake.
011 - Dog Biscuits 1
Watch Debora demonstrate how to make easy snacks such as dog breath bones, dried sweet potato chews, and liver treats. Then Louise will discuss how to make the best use of treats during training, share her thoughts on good nutrition for your pet and answer any questions you may have.
012 - 01 - Doggie Breath Bones
INCLUDES: Tea and coffee, cakes and biscuits; a doggy bag which will include a recipe sheet, dog treats and other goodies for you and your dog.
WHEN: March 22, 2pm-5pmCOSTS: £30

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