A Slightly Surprising Guest Recipe by Brigadier (Rtd) Sir Hillary Frothing-Knightly GCB KBE DSC MC DSO & Bar, President of the Loyal British Plain Speaking & Common Sense Association of France (Dordogne Branch)Posted on Monday, August 27, 2012 at 6:33 pm
Category: Guest Posts, Recipes
The late August heat lingers on and minds are fixed on the business of staying cool, including the finely-tuned brain of the Brigadier. Our postman braved the shimmering inferno to deliver a package this lunchtime marked “Urgent! Timely Advice & Instruction Enclosed” and I have passed the heat of the day transcribing it for your information & education. Now I am going to leap, gazelle like, into the pool:
One, two, one, two. Is this thing working? Peter Piper picked and peck of pickled peppers. Don’t see how, myself, because surely the peppers must have been picked prior to pickling. Wouldn’t want to pickle the entire plant. Waste of vinegar. Stands to reason. This is the sort of lunacy one gets when one joins the Common Market. Having to spend all night haggling with a bunch of Belgians about the price of beetroot, dozing off and then awakening only to find that the blighters have signed you up to some damn fool notion about pickling entire pepper plants.
So: Peter Piper picked a peck of peppers that had previously not been inappropriately pickled while unpicked and then pickled them in line with the established natural order of things. Stick that in your pipe and smoke it, bally Belgie!
Where was I? Ah.
Now, I don’t know what the weather has been doing your in your neck of the woods, but here in God’s country it’s been jolly hot. So hot, in fact, that even the flies have been walking. Shades of Aden when I was there in ’64, what?
Now, as then, the problem is one of libation. Mustn’t become dehydrated, you know. Just look what happened to my former AdC Capt. “Soapy” Washpole . He became dehydrated in Benghazi, removed all his clothes and ran amuck. Importuned several of the Queen Alexandra nursing sisters (though some them actually complained when he stopped) before disappearing into the desert mounted on the chaplain’s donkey. Found him two days later face down in a wadi completely gaga. Hard to be shipped back to Blighty where he went into politics.
Can’t recall what happened to the donkey. Probably wandered off into the scrub and lived as happily as an Arab donkey can. Should have shipped him back instead of Washpole, frankly, as he would have made a far better job of the Colonial Office than that arse did.
Clearly then, dehydration to be avoided.
Being a chap who likes his toast butter side up and plays a straight bat, I admit to have something of a problem with the notion of a cocktail. Certainly I am not against the idea of a splash of tonic with my lunchtime gin, or a dash of soda with my bedtime brandy, or even a spot of water with my pre-breakfast scotch, but, to be perfectly blunt the idea of a drink served in a scooped-out pineapple with a paper umbrella and a straw rather leaves me cold.
That sort of thing should be left to ladies, fairy gentlemen and the sort of smarmy creeps who went to Harrow.
However, the memsahib tends to become a little, well, frisky in the heat, and at any moment may take down her well-thumbed copy of the Karma Sutra and insist we engage in the joining of the swan or the joining of the butterfly, or, worse still her own invention, the joining of the mongoose in the final agonies of strychnine poisoning. Plays hell with my lumbago, but a chap must do his duty and over imbibing of strong drink can lead to Mr Mouse being a little reluctant to Come Out to Play and we have to go through that dreadful business with the lolly sticks & Sellotape.
So, dilution is the order of the day if the requirements of hydration and marital harmony are to be met.
After a certain amount of experimentation I have come up with a combination that is both appropriately quenching and manly: the Brigadier’s Gin & Lime Fizz:
- Fill a tall glass with ice cubes
- Pour over two measures of gin, one measure of Rose’s lime cordial, and two measures of fresh lime juice.
- Add two more measures of gin – optional if one is a lady, a fairy gentlemen or the sort of smarmy creep who went to Harrow
- Top off with chilled soda water
- Stand at ease.
Foreigners and lesser races (Americans, French, that sort of thing) might prefer to substitute vodka or white rum for the gin.
Best finish as the memsahib has just appeared in condition déshabillé and shouted “tally-ho!”