June 28, 2020
With the recent (not unexpected) news of the relaxation of the quarantine rules,
my thoughts are turning to those who will be heading for the airports,
as they move from one heatwave to another.
If I was not focusing on the opening of our new Corner Shop
and the September re opening of the Restaurant, I too may have been travelling,
either to beautiful Cornwall or across the Channel, or possiblyÂ to California
for my annual Chez Panisse-fix. But that is not to be this year.
Instead, I will have to imagine the farmersâ€™ market stalls of the Luberon, Tuscany or the Ferry Plaza,
brimming with their height-of-the-summer produce; big, fat, ripe tomatoes of every colour,
bunches of basil, including the roots (always a good sign of the best basil), glorious white,
yellow and blush pink peaches, and of course trays upon trays of green and purple figs.
So when we heard this week that the first of the Italian figs had arrived,Â we started to feel a bitÂ better!
They shall be delivered by our supplier for the shopÂ every day while they are at their peak,
so that our customers who are staying in town may enjoy them too.
If the Restaurant was open, we would be serving them as salads with Westcombe Dairy ricotta
or ripped balls of mozzarella or burrata, pretty summer leaves, drizzled with our new own label olive
oil from Tuscany. Another lovely dish we love is figs served with Charentais melon and
San Daniele ham or prosciutto – so easy to serve and so beautiful to look at.
Dessert ideas flow easily at this time of the year too; figs with raspberries or peaches marry well, or
figs 1/4â€™d and baked in almond tarts, or roasted with walnuts and honey is another classic
combination. And then of course served alongside a selection of cheeses, figs are a perfect
accompaniment to soft Gorgonzola dolce, Ragstone or Perroche perhaps,
just needing a few sprigs of leafy celery heart for contrast.
The best open â€˜figâ€™ sandwich may be made simply with a slice of our amazing raisinÂ and
rosemary bread (this new recipe HAS to be tried!), toasted with soft goat cheese,
topped with thin slices of ripe fig, a sprinkling of sea salt, pepper and olive oil…
(this reminds me – we are working on a few new sandwich ideas at the moment –
so keep in touch with us and more will be revealed soon!…)
Pre heat an overheat grill for a few minutes.
Cut 2 thick slices of Clarkeâ€™s bread – ideally raisin and rosemary or potato-onion Paysanne.
Toast on one side until golden-brown, flip over and grill until almost golden.
On this side, spread a generous amount of soft goat cheese, (or ricotta or curd cheese).
Wash 2 large ripe figs and trim off the stalk end. Slice each fig into 5 or 6 and lay, slightly
overlapping across the cheese. Season with sea salt and pepper and drizzle with olive oil.
Grill again until the cheese has started to melt and the fig slices are warm.
Sprinkle with chopped chives. Served immediately = lunch is DONE!
The Corner extension to our shop will be opening in mid July –
with a lovely new takeaway coffee offering in the front,
alongside our breads, croissants and baked goods.
We will be open from early morning each day
and so look forward to seeing you all there!
Our re opening date for the Restaurant is Wednesday September 2nd.
To start, we will be serving Dinner only – an early and a late sitting.
This will allow us to follow the government guidelines,
not only by seating you in safety, but also by looking after our staff
who will be cooking for you and serving at your table.
Reservations are now being accepted.
Sally Clarke Shop,
1, Campden Street,
London W8 7EP