13 Jan 2012

Home from home: Roast Lamb with Marsala

I started the hungry writer in France when identifying a sense of home seemed more urgent, being much further from either Wales, the country of my birth, or England, my adopted country. Each week I tugged on a thread of memory from my childhood and pulled myself towards home.

France feels very far away now, emotionally, even though it’s only been less than three months since we moved back. I spoke to a friend in Antibes yesterday and she told me about l’hiver incroyable they’re enjoying: 18 degrees during the day and the usual Mediterranean blue sky. I thought I’d miss the easy climate, the light, the sea but the British winter has been so incroyablement mild too with lots of clear skies, and I get to see the sea every month during my trips to Wales. And there are not many better beaches than this in the world. Forget about heat, palm trees, sunbeds. I’m talking about good sand, space, the sense of being swallowed by the sea, the noise of a high tide at night hitting the sea wall. 

It doesn’t matter anymore that the Steelworks is at one end. Gone are the days of jumping little oil slicks and coal dust on your journey to the shore. Stricter regulations have enabled the beach to gain a Blue Flag rating. It’s tractored and cleaned every day. It really is a heart-opening experience to stand on the Prom and breathe. 

Finding home since I’ve been back has taken on a number of identities. The home I need to feel in my writing environment has eventually been achieved after living with boxes for 10 weeks with new shelving and a desk to replace ones left in France:



And I feel spoiled with homeliness as I travel between Kent and Port Talbot in South Wales too. A true home from home experience.

Foodwise, I am delving into home with lamb. There is nothing to compare to Welsh Spring lamb. I can’t even enter into a debate about it. Case closed. I’ve made this twice since I’ve been back, once for family and once just for me and Tony. Eating what you love with someone you love has to be right at the top of the list of good things to do, and the list of what makes you feel at home.

Hungry Writing prompts appear below the photos which are rather like a picture story strip so hardly need any written directions, except perhaps to say that I pour 100 ml of Marsala over the lamb at the beginning of the cooking time and another 100 ml for the last 20 minutes, then I use those juices to make a gravy.
Roast Lamb with Marsala Wine


 





  Hungry Writing Prompts
  1. Write about the country of your birth.
  2. Write about a winter you remember well.
  3. Write about space.
  4. Write about a book.
  5. Write about someone preparing a meal.