Monday, June 13, 2011

Chocolate Hazelnut Meringue Roulade and Timothy, the sheep

The truth is, I'm an incorrigible glutton. Food is my weakness. I am fortunate to be married to a man who loves to cook and loves to eat, so we are a perfect match with our quiet kitchen dance and our Maltesers in the bedside drawer.  It is no secret that I become itchy and homesick during the winter months here in Laurel Canyon. Let's be honest, LA is my Lady, but when I'm miserable, all I can think about is my mother's Sunday lunch.  My husband, the Maharishi, who is a kind man, a gentleman, and who watches me like a hawk while pretending not to, says things like "Why don't you go to England for a few days. I'm sure we can rustle up a mileage ticket on Virgin." And so it goes. All my dreaming of a tardis and Sunday lunch and walks in the Chiltern Hills and my mother's cozy house which overlooks the Vale of Aylesbury and her sweet Jack Russell who is as small as a Yorkie and as game as a big labrador...all of it came to me last week when I went home for five days.

There really is no better time in England than June.  Imagine, if you will, soft, long, warm days, so warm that you can sit outside to eat lunch and sometimes even you have to retreat under the eves for shade.  Imagine a green lawn and a garden full of roses and peonies and orange blossom and edged with plum trees.  Imagine eating supper at 8.30pm and sitting at the table till 10 to watch the sun set in a melon-pink sky. It's really blissful, and short-lived.  After June the 21st, the days shorten and we start the long march towards winter (there's the Norwegian pessimism at work).

Sunday lunch -- usually some roast lamb, or pork, or beef, or perhaps a roast chicken -- with masses of different vegetables is a tradition in our house and many English houses.  My mother made roast pork with crackling (no-one's crackling even comes close to hers for salty crackliness and lipsmacking deliciousness), red cabbage (with sugar and red wine, the Norwegian way), carrots, snap peas, cauliflower, broccoli and new Jersey potatoes. A feast.

But the crowning glory had to be my sister's Chocolate Hazelnut Meringue Roulade which she served with raspberries.  I am happy to share the recipe -- via Delia Smith -- here. I am so not a pudding person but this one is utterly scrumptious -- a toasted hazlenut meringue stuffed with chocolate cream and whipped cream, rolled up and drizzled with chocolate.

chocolate hazelnut meringue roulade

My sister is a wonderful cook. She's who I call when I'm out of ideas and I have ten people coming for supper.  She also has a sheep called Timothy, a flock of hens, some ducks, a few dogs and she is a foster mother for local hounds.

my sister's chickens

timothy, the sheep, who is very old

Life is short.  I walked in the canyon early this morning and saw a child's crown, made out of paper and decorated with felt-tip pen and silver-paper stars, hanging on a hat-rack in a doorway and I thought to myself: That's what we need. More paper crowns.

And roast pork with crackling. And chocolate hazelnut meringue roulade served with fresh raspberries.


Carren said...

Yes. More paper crowns :) I hope you had a good trip!

legend in his own lunchtime said...

I've only just got back and already I am wanting to leave these shores again, and all for some crackling, and some tasty lamb, and maybe a few pints and a chat down at the local, and maybe.......

Anonymous said...

On June 21st my father would say: Winter's coming. I love Scotland in May and June... err until 21st.

Susan Champlin said...

Luscious in every way. Thank you for sharing the treats (including that photo of handsome Timothy) with us. And thank you in advance for taking me with you next time.

Caroline, No. said...

I want to hug Timothy!

I'm glad you got your dose of England. I'm going up to Yorkshire this weekend and really looking forward to my Ma's sunday lunch. Best enjoyed with a hangover.

Liberty London Girl said...

We absolutely need more paper crowns. I loved this post for reasons to long to write here, but thank you. LLGxx

plasterers bristol said...

Yummy this sounds nice. looks delicious to, thanks for sharing this recipe.