TABLE TALK #83
Traditions. Love ‘em or hate ‘em, they’re sometimes hard to escape, and rarely more so than with the advent of the great British summer.
Whether it’s the dull thud of tennis balls hitting the net as Wimbledon engrosses the nation for yet another fortnight, or our collective commitment to barbecuing whatever the weather, there’s an endlessly long list of things that have come to define our lives through these warmer, brighter months.
🍡 AMUSE-BOUCHES 🍡
Book: bag tables at London’s most in-demand spots
Marvel: beautiful photos from across the world of wine
Eat: up your salad dressing repertoire with the advent of summer
🍝 MAIN COURSE 🍝
The problem with traditions is that they can sometimes feel outdated or irrelevant, a legacy from a bygone era that has no place in our modern world. For as long as I can remember, I have placed that most British of traditions, and items, in that category - cucumber sandwiches.
To me, they were dull. Limp, lifeless and not long for this world. They were relics and not the good kind like ancient castles or Dan Hartman disco tunes. But all that changed this past weekend when I saw someone peeling cucumbers and removing crusts ahead of a christening. Intrigued by the care and precision that had gone into making the small beige triangles that latterly appeared, I felt compelled to take one.
In that moment, my life changed. I realised I had been wrong and that I was all the richer for coming to acknowledge that. To me, and this is something that’s still sinking in, the cucumber sandwich fits in the pantheon of other greats that employ a mere handful of ingredients that combine to be infinitely more than the sum of their parts.
White bread, butter, cucumber and cracked black pepper. Four ingredients, no more. Omelettes, carbonara, caprese salads and affogato all fall into this camp, and are all revered the world over with good reason.
You may think I’m wrong, you may think I’m a relic for even suggesting as much, but the cucumber sandwich is one tradition that I’m chuffed to welcome back into my life. Long may it reign over us.
Accessorised wonderfully with the plate
🍮 SWEET ENDINGS 🍮
It sometimes feels like you can’t move for people talking about wild swimming or espousing the benefits of immersing yourself in cold water.
If that’s your jam, check out The Ponds and the beautiful stories of those who take to the water year-round on London’s Hampstead Heath.
🍷 WHAT'S NEW
WEDNESDAY'S DOMAINE? 🍷
We’re spending some time thinking about what makes the perfect midweek evening, so hold tight for more playlists, podcasts and recipes than you can shake a stick at.
See you next week,