Ahead of his upcoming demo in which he’ll cook and share seasonal recipes from The Borough Market Cookbook, Ed Smith tells of his love of summer ingredients and what he’ll be cooking up when the season’s in full swing
As a general rule of thumb, my favourite cooking season is whichever one we’re about to get started on. So right now, that means summer!
I mention in The Borough Market Cookbook that this is when we need (and want) to do as little as possible to the ingredients we pick up.
Which is a happy coincidence, given what is or is about to be on offer—fresh and flavourful salad leaves, peas in their pods, broad beans, radishes, summer berries and animals fed on fresh pasture—but also the fact that we want to spend those precious and occasionally hot sunlight hours eating outside, rather than slaving away in the kitchen. Fresh, flavourful, quick and easy are the buzzwords here.
The summer section of the cookbook is full of recipes and ideas to support our summertime needs: from burrata embellished with toasted seeds and olive oil, to barbecued courgettes dressed with jammy burnt lemon and fragrant za’atar, to a tomato and tapenade tart and an almond semi freddo served with white balsamic macerated berries, it’s got this season’s menu planning covered. If you’ve already got a copy, consider this your nudge to turn back to it and browse through that middle section.
Fresh burrata, toasted seeds
I’ll be showcasing this summertime eating theme in the Demonstration Kitchen on Friday 14th June, when I’ll be cooking a handful of those dishes from the book—there’ll be plenty to sample, recipes cards to take home, and signed copies of the book too.
We’ll begin with a quick taster of that fresh burrata and toasted seeds idea; it’s been my go-to start of a mid-year meal ever since I began the cookbook writing process.
After that, I’ll whip together and then bake a rosemary and citrus olive oil cake. To me, this is a breakfast or mid-morning bite, to be eaten on a sunny terrace with a strong coffee to hand and serene Tuscan scene on the mind. But it’ll work on a Friday morning in the Market Hall off Borough High Street too—made all the sweeter with a serving of poached apricots and yoghurt on the side.
There’ll be colourful tomatoes served on whipped tahini. Ordinarily I think tomatoes are at their best later on in the summer, but I have to say I’ve been impressed with the acidity and flavour already on offer in the Market. Get your tasting fork ready for this one.
A simple supper
A traditional British roast is off the cards in my house from now until late September—when it’s hot I prefer salads and grilled vegetables to roast potatoes and yorkshire puddings. But that doesn’t mean we can’t get a meat fix. I like the poached and shredded chicken salad on page 115… so we’ll be doing that too. Orange blossom, almonds, strips of carrots and fresh mint—it’s a good’un.
Then, finally, a simple supper of fresh linguine, soft fennel sausage and lemon. Which ticks all of those buzzwords mentioned above.
Stomach rumbling? See you there.
Join Ed for tips, tastings and recipes Friday 14th June in the Market Hall, 1-2:30pm