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We have been making refreshing summery drinks to keep us cool in the hot weather we’ve been having.  This recipe is from one of my favourite recipe books, one that I imagine I will still be opening in twenty years from now – Darina Allen’s Forgotten Skills of Cooking.

The most complicated part of this recipe is making the sugar syrup – which involves boiling water and sugar together.  Yes, that’s it. 

Then all you do is mix water, lemon juice and sugar syrup to taste.  The remainder of my sugar syrup is bottled up in the fridge – ready whenever we want to make more.

Sugar syrup

Makes 825ml (20 fl oz)

450g (1lb) caster sugar
600ml (1 pint) water

In a saucepan, dissolve the sugar in the water and bring to the boil.  Boil for 2 minutes then turn off and leave to cool.  Store in the fridge until needed.  In a fridge it will keep for months.

Note: this makes quite a lot of sugar syrup, so we made half this amount – I still have leftovers in the fridge.

Homemade cloudy lemonade

Serves 6

Juice of 3 lemons (I use the best I can find – big fat ones from Italy are my choice, available at Unicorn)
225ml sugar syrup
700ml water (sparkling or still)
Ice cubes

Mix all the ingredients in a large jug and add the ice cubes when you are ready to serve.

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naples

N and I got back from our week in Italy last night, having had a truly wonderful holiday in Naples and on the Amalfi Coast.  I have religiously kept a food diary of all the food we consumed and can’t wait to share the high’s and lo’s with you all.

I have also got over 400 photos (I know!) to go through so there will be a couple of installments over the next week or more, so please check back. 

Here’s a sneak peek in the meantime of some of the delicious food we found and ate on our travels in Italy…

italysneakpeek

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The weather in the UK is positively balmy, and what we really want to eat lots of is salad.  Most other food just seems too much in this heat.  So here is a healthy but most importantly delicious salad, with tomatoes, beans and new potatoes and a zingy citrus and chilli dressing.

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Zingy tomato and bean salad

Feeds 2-4 people

1 x tin haricot beans, drained and rinsed
200g new potatoes
200g cherry tomatoes
2 spring onions
Bunch of flat leaf parsley
1/2 red chilli
A couple of tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
Zest and juice of 1/2 lemon
Salt and pepper

Cook the new potatoes, drain and cut into chunks.  While the potatoes are cooking, slice up the cherry tomatoes and spring onions.

Mix the potatoes, beans and tomatoes together in a serving bowl.

Roughly chop the parsley and pop into a separate bowl.  Finely chop the chilli and add it to the parsley.  Tip in the sliced spring onions, olive oil, zest and juice of the lemon.  Give it a good mix and add a bit more oil if you want it a bit runnier.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Pour the dressing over the potatoes, beans and tomatoes and mix well.  The potatoes gently start to melt and the dressing will seep into them and the beans and this is just scrumptious.

Eat on its own, or with some grilled chicken or fish. 

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Eat the Earth

I love food, especially locally grown and seasonal food. This is my place to share my food finds and the food I like to eat.

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All pictures are my own unless stated. I would kindly ask that you don't use them elsewhere unless you ask permission first. Many thanks x

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