Friday, 1 May 2009

Twelve Reasons to Eat at Le Cafe Anglais in May

  1. Jersey Royals. Or Cornish earlies. Since we can’t decide, we’re going to have both since a good new potato is worth every effort. With butter and mint. No frills, no caviar.
  2. Asparagus. English green and French white. We will serve them in a variety of ways, including as soldiers with a soft boiled egg, plain with melted butter, grilled with olive oil and Parmesan or in a fricassee with.........
  3. .......morels. just on toast or with asparagus, chicken or fish, these incomparable mushrooms will feature big time.
  4. Peas. In our lovely new salad, with Romaine & Parmesan, in risotto and soup, with duck, pigeon and lamb, let me count the ways.....
  5. Sea trout and wild salmon. Coracle caught in Wales or netted off the Pentland Firth or by rod and line, raw with ginger dressing, half cooked or ‘confit’: just occasionally, one cannot resist.
  6. Sorrel in soup, in omelettes, with fish, lamb and rabbit. Its sharp tang lets you know that spring is in the air.
  7. Spring lamb. Sometimes salt marsh, sometimes just sweet lowland meadow lamb, incredibly tender and usually simply roast. Look out for the Tuesday blanquette.
  8. Gariguette strawberries. I know English are supposed to be the best but the bright fresh acidity of these beauties, coupled with gorgeous sweet fruit flavour, they give them a real run for their money. Incomparable when coupled with rhubarb: look out for the Rosé Jelly with Rhubarb, Gariguettes and Pannacotta, a properly sophisticated pudding.
  9. Broad beans. Podded, peeled and coarsely chopped, stewed in butter and tossed in spaghetti with Pecorino cheese: a great hit from last year brought back by popular demand. Also with burrata, fish, lamb (again) and most other things.
  10. Mousserons, or fairy ring mushrooms. Tiny little mushrooms. Not much in the way of texture but a wonderful fragrance, perfect in omelettes or with fish and chicken.
  11. Gull’s Eggs. The perfect hors d’oeuvre, served absolutely plain with the option of a dab of mayonnaise and a pinch of rather good celery salt.
  12. Mackerel with gooseberries. Towards the end of the month the perfect marriage: rich oily fish seared on the griddle and a nice, tart compote of the fruit the French call ‘groseilles à maquereau’. Sublime.

1 comment:

  1. Oh wow - I have to get down! That Gariguette pudding sounds fantastic.