I have so many recipes to share with you but London is currently experiencing a heat wave and I’m finding it hard not to just flop onto the cool kitchen tiles with the cats. Nobody wants to cook anyway, right? Yeah, yeah, so 30 degrees doesn’t seem that extreme but there’s something about the fuggy London heat that clings to your skin like a special kind of grime. It’s oppressive.
I’ve always wondered, when visiting places like Borneo or Vietnam, why they have such an extreme approach to indoor temperature control and it’s because they genuinely like to freeze in between bouts of professional sweating. I heard a story the other day about someone who grew up in Dubai and they had to carry around a jumper when it was 45 degrees outside so they wouldn’t become Mr. Frosty if sat inside for more than half an hour. That’s ridiculous.
Some people claim to like the heat, of course. Good for them. I say it’s just not natural for a human to be exposed to these conditions. In Malaysia, I asked someone if they were born able to bear the heat or if they built up resistance over time and their answer was: neither. People living in very hot countries don’t enjoy it either. They just have to get on with it.
If all this sounds like a bitch and a moan about the good weather then I’m sorry to tell you that’s exactly what it is. Give me 25 degrees and a gentle wind and I’m a happy woman. That’s perfect weather for a BBQ, say, or sitting in the park with an ice cream. It becomes more about Vitamin D and less about survival.
Tomorrow, this weather is due to break and it’s then that I will share with you a recipe for ice cream because I’m doing this on my terms now, weather. I’m taking back control.
Broad Beans with Yoghurt and Smoky Chilli Butter
This is a lovely thing to eat with lamb, as we did (recipe coming soon), or on its own with bread for swooshing through that sauce. The yoghurt is very cooling (yes, COOLING) and the butter is great because it’s butter and it’s infused with ground up smoky chilli. It’s essential that you use a whole chilli here – one of those Mexican ones with a complex flavour, not, say smoked paprika.
This also works best with small, sweet beans.
500g broad beans in their pods
1 smoky chilli e.g. Poblano, Ancho (Chipotle would be a bit much)
Pod the beans and cook them. Pop them from their tough husks. Allow to cool.
Melt butter. Grind the chilli. Add to the butter.
Spread yoghurt on a plate, top with beans and the butter. Serve.