Hot Coals, Red Peppers, Cold Beer
Odd that on warm days we want to stand over hot coals, poking and prodding embers, hands greasy with lighting fluid and charcoal dust. It’s not a good look. The Barbecue always takes precisely twice as long to light as you expect, unless you don’t expect it to, in which case it does it straight away. The wind, seemingly aware of your intention to simply cook some food, changes course determined purely by which way you position the damn grill.
But we do it anyway – of course we do. The sun’s out. Enjoy it while you can. Blue skies, sun cream and a freshly mown lawn (obviously there has to be some kind of manual labour involved first before enjoying the weekend, that, again, is what we do), marinating meat, chopped salad, and beer in a bucket of iced water. Drink it before the label falls off.
Tables out, ready to rock. Man vs Food time, time to put all those Steve Reichlen books into practise. I can do better than all those BBQ joints, springing up like hipster weeds across cities and markets. Punchy flavour, charred meat, smoke and salt. You can do anything on a barbecue and it’ll taste good. Last weekend it was pork chops, this weekend it’s Lamb steaks. Kofte next week. We’re here all Summer, Sun. You do your bit, we’ll do ours.
But it’s not the meat we’re in love with today. It’s the whole sweet pepper, split lengthwise and smeared with cheap Goat’s cheese, brushed with Olive oil on the grill and sprinkled with Salt. That’s it. Juicy, sharp, sweet, tingly, charred. Food for adjectives. Food for sunny days.
Cold beer in hand (Little Creatures Pilsner; clean, kind of creamy, floral finish but everything nicely muted) we sit, mostly quiet, wondering how many of these we could eat. Sunny Sundays.