Let’s talk about my home (or at least, part of it). It was empty when I decided to rent it, and the fact that I was able to furnish any way I wanted, helped me to decide. It is a very small duplex, very close to the Glorieta de Embajadores. Downstairs there’s the kitchen and the sitting/eating room with a toilet. Upstairs, my bedroom. Tiny.
It looks bigger in pictures. This weekend my parents were visiting Madrid, and my Mum, upon entering my home she couldn’t help but say she remembered it bigger from the last time she was there. My kitchen is so small it is imposible for two people to cook together. That makes for awkward moments when I ask Victor (not very nicely, most of the time) to please go sit at the table and let me cook by myself. It is quite hard to try to cook two things at the same time, you need to use very small pans to do so.
But I just love my tiny kitchen. And I love it even more now that my Dad has put up three lovely wooden shelfs, one of them (the bottom one) with little hooks so I can hang some of my mugs. And, it was them too who got me my electric oven, without it my life couldn’t go on, and do not get me started on Superman.
This week I’ve added some more stuff, specially to the kitchen: five gorgeous aromatic plants on my windowsill: rosemary and thyme, parsley, basil and chocolate mint.
I am not sure if I am good or bad with plants. I know my mum is good with them. So with the help of Mr. Google and my Mum’s knowledge, I hope I can keep them alive. Not like my first cactus, which I killed two weeks after I got it. In my defense, V. says that it was probably sick when I bought it, so he is sure that I am not at fault here. (He surely has more faith in me that I have).
I am not a very patient man, and when there is something new in my house I tend to want to use it as soon as I can, so I decided I would use some of my herbs as soon as I could on a recipe. So, I found some fennel I had bought two days before, and that I had never ever in my life used. I wasn’t even sure I was going to like it but, hey, had to try it. So this is how the recipe was born: fennel, blood orange (another one of my current obsessions) and basil from my “herb garden”.
Blood orange and fennel salad with basil.
- 1 fennel bulb
- salt & pepper
- juice of 1 lime
- 2 blood oranges
- 1 scallion
- 1 handful of toasted cashews
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp white wine vinegar
- 8 or 10 fresh basil leaves
Julienne the fennel, season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with the lime juice on a bowl. Set aside. Peel and cut the oranges in crecents. Julienne the scallion. Add the oranges and scallion to the bowl with the fennel, then mix in the cashews. Drizzle with olive oil and vinegar. Toss to mix well, and finally arrange the basil leaves on top of the salad. Enjoy.