Ruminations and recipes from a small kitchen in a big city.


Cool, clear water.

44 degrees? Poolside. Children splashing. Lunch on the lawn under an ancient peppercorn tree. The 14-year drought meant there had been little grass for years in places like this; now it is as lush as you like.

Not all that many people here. This place used to be packed in summers long gone. I suspect many children are parked in front of air conditioners and screens. This is heading towards an "in my day" harangue so let's leave it right there. And anyway, it's 46 degrees in Adelaide today. That's Celsius. Or Centigrade, as it used to be known.

Dinner that last hot night was risotto using 75/25 rice and lentils with a lot of garlic and onion and a little cumin for a dish that might have originated from slightly further around the Mediterranean. Served with sectors of ice-cold truss tomatoes and sprinkled with lemon juice for ample acid bite against the warmth of the cumin. Sensational on a hot night. Cold white wine to accompany.

And so, chilled leftover risotto on the lawn for lunch overlooking the pool, where merely looking at the water brings your core temperature down. What to read? The daily newspaper or another gruesome James Hadley Chase? I brought both along.

Alexandra is swimming. She goes underwater and then pops up again like a seal. That's all three of them waterborne. None had lessons, just pool time. Now to get her diving like Thomas in the link above.


Say Dan can't you see that big green tree,
Where the water's runnin' free.
It's waiting there for you and me
And water .... cool, clear water.

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