Sunday, July 04, 2010
I admit it. I suck at barbecuing. I know people, usually men, who don an apron with some ridiculous motif on it like a woman in bra and knickers, brandish the barbecue implements like ceremonial samurai swords and banish the women to the kitchen to make salad. People like me stand and watch, feeling wimpish.
It is educational therefore to watch a French peasant woman at work, first manhandling a 30kg hernia-sized cast iron barbecue into the right position then tearing up cardboard, woodchips and other flammable material by hand and setting fire to it. I was surprised she didn't rub two sticks together. Supremely confident that the charcoal and wood mix was going to catch, she set about dismembering poussin with industrial sized secateurs, throwing together a marinade of fresh lemon juice and whatever was to hand in the garden, sage, fennel, oregano and lemongrass, then padded off to put together everything else, including dessert. Dinner in fifteen minutes. Or, it would be, were I wearing a watch.