I think I can say it now. It’s summer.
IT. IS. SUMMER.
It’s summer because my toenails are blue.
All my socks are in the drawer.
Chotto-ma went to school in her pyjamas and bedroom slippers today (It’s Pyjama Day)
Our clothes are drying on the clothesline instead of the radiators
Everyone’s eating on pavements. And smiling at strangers.
Our room is all happysillysummery.
The evenings look like mornings.
We decided to move house. (Yeah, it’s our summer thing)
D has a heat rash on his neck (A heat rash. Hear?)
We spent an hour at the V&A, and the cool felt good. (Cool? Good? In England?)
We had ice-creams and beers by the Serpentine. That felt good too.
We’re sleeping with the windows open at night.
There’s jazz in the park, and hampers on the grass.
And the most that I have cooked lately, are things that cook by themselves.
Sujoc spiced chicken & summer vegetables
It’s a one-dish, so all you do is put it in the oven and let it cook. You read a book. You watch the light outside go from four-o’clock-yellow to six-o’clock-white. And then you take it out. And you sit in the morning-like-evening, with a bottle of chilled Pinot. And you tuck in.
Summer makes me hungry for more. Of everything.
Ingredients ( I used vegetables I had in my kitchen. Feel free to add the ones you have in yours.)
4-6 chicken thighs
8-10 slices of chorizo
2 carrots, diced diagonally
2 potatoes, diced in circles
6-8 plum tomatoes, whole
6-8 shallots, whole
6 cloves garlic, crushed
A sprinkle of raisins
A drizzle of white wine (about 2 tbsp)
1 tsp sujoc (Or, soujok/soujoukh is available in most Middle Eastern shops. If not, the spice is a blend of fenugreek, cumin, garlic, black pepper, paprika, red chilli)
A few springs of basil (I used the fragrant, small-leafed Greek Basil)
Pre-heat your oven at 180 degrees C.
Put everything into an oven proof dish, and mix. Turn the chicken skin-side up. Tuck the chorizo under the vegetables.
Cover with foil, and put it into the oven for an hour-and-a-half.
Take off the foil, and put the dish back into the oven till the chicken is done, and the skin is crispy.