Pink grapefruit gimlets 🍸💕💫
Pink grapefruit gimlet
At 5pm on a Friday we’re honestly just looking for the easy life. We want to shut down our computers and have a drink in our hand approximately four minutes later. Now is not the time for whizzing, muddling, or smooshing of any sort. A lot of modern gimlet recipes involve a mix of sugar syrup and fresh lime juice, so when our friend Alex suggested using Rose’s Lime Cordial in a grapefruit gimlet, we were fully on board.
It’s actually an old method popularised by a 19th Century ship master in Leith. After doctor James Lind discovered that citrus prevented scurvy in 1753, Lachlan Rose created his lime cordial as a way to preserve lime juice without alcohol (our hangovers thank him). Traditionally the gimlet is made with half Rose’s Lime, half gin – a method that even gets a nod in Raymond Chandler’s 1953 detective novel The Long Goodbye. If you happen to be showing signs of scurvy and want an extra citrus kick (be on the lookout for blue spots around your shins), a sharp burst of pink grapefruit juice is just the thing to balance out the sweetness.
45ml pink grapefruit juice
25ml Rose’s Lime Cordial
Mix all of the ingredients in a cocktail shaker over ice.
Shake vigorously, as though trying to rid one’s spotty ankle of a ship rat.
Strain into a cocktail glass.
In a nutshell
If you are the savouriest of savoury snack people, and you’re in the mood for the most wonderful treat and can momentarily overlook the fact that these cost a small fortune (£4.95 for 135g!), may we enthusiastically recommend Belazu’s truffle and pecorino nuts. They are just so delicious and umami-ish and we’d wager they’d be delightful with Sian’s cocktail above. Trying them is a bit of a risk, because you’ll likely want to eat them every day for the rest of your life. We’ve already crossed that bridge, and are happy to report that 1.35kg bags are available.
Sometimes we stumble on an ingredient so brilliant that it immediately gets promoted to The Special Section of the cupboard. The little collection of spices that actually get used and stay in one spot, rather than becoming part of the mass that makes an inevitable rotation to the back of the cupboard waiting to be discovered when you move house three years later. Tajin is Sian’s latest discovery of utmost happiness. After buying it on a whim because it sounded like something that might taste good in a Bloody Mary (and hoo boy, it really does) it’s since been used on chicken, avocado, eggs, and – in a fit of homeworking lunchtime desperation – a crumpet. The combination of lime, chilli and sea salt is perfect. This is an ingredient for those times when you want to feel like you’ve cooked without actually putting any effort in at all. And if you’re thinking it would taste delicious around the rim of your grapefruit gimlet’s cocktail glass, you’d be absolutely correct.
Pour your heart out
Picture the scene. You’re sitting in the back of a beige Volvo, a coolbox full of Kia-Ora digging into your side. From the front seat, a sandwich wrapped in tin foil is proffered, cut into quarters and filled with Heinz Sandwich Spread and sliced cucumbers. The bread’s a bit soggy but every mouthful is tangy and delicious and crunchy. There’s the sound of contented chewing and rustling and the crunching of crisps; that Ralph McTell song about the streets of London comes on the car stereo and you all sing along between mouthfuls. You roll down the window a bit and the rain makes polka dots on your sleeve. Then a flask appears, and the coffee smells strong and hot and good, and everyone has a little cup with their KitKat. Snap, slurp, aaah. Wiping the steamed-up glass, you look outside at the wet trees and the heaving Scottish sky and you don’t imagine for a moment that one day, you’ll pay £30 to relive this feeling.
Our inbox has begun to resemble a hotel breakfast buffet, such is our love of a food-themed newsletter. Here are some of our favourites that might not be on your radar.
Lickedspoon. How much do you fantasise about running away to the south of France to eat bread and cheese? Food writer Debora Robertson has done exactly that, and her newsletter includes recipes and missives, and a weekly collection of her haul from the market.
The Welsh Kitchen. There’s something hugely comforting about Ross Clarke’s newsletter. Sian grew up on the Welsh border, so reading it on a Sunday evening always feels like home, and there’s always something interesting in this regular appreciation of a little-explored area of British cuisine.
The Goya Journal. A semi-regular (maybe monthly?) newsletter that takes us all over India and South Asia, inspiring us to cook something new while exploring connections to food and community. We learn something in every issue.
Buzzing. If you’re looking for something completely different, check out Emilia Filou’s Buzzing, which explores the growing use of insects as food. It’s such an interesting read about food politics and sustainability, even if you’re not even slightly tempted to add crickets to your shopping list.
To Vegetables, With Love. Hetty Lui McKinnon makes magic with vegetables. As well as an original (and delicious) recipe in every newsletter, you’ll also find links to the recipes she’s published elsewhere each month. Whenever you’ve reached your limit of beige food and want dinner to be all green and fresh and zingy flavours, she’ll see you right.