salads summer


My mother had quite a serious knee operation last Thursday, so my sis and I planned to drive up to her cottage in Northamptonshire after we left Wilderness on Monday to spend the week with her, whilst she recuperated.

I didn’t plan on being struck with a virulent bout of gastroenteritis on Monday. Boy that was all the fun. I started to feel decidedly ill as we drove home, – and my sister’s decision to expound upon her theories on the welfare state really was not helping my pounding headache. I may have finally gripped the steering wheel and told her to shut the f&ck up. Suffice to say we stopped several times on the way home.

I managed to just about hold it together in order to drive my mother to Northampton for an emergency nurse’s appointment – napping on the back seat whilst she was in the clinic, although my mood was not improved by a police RADAR check (I got a speeding ticket this morning. JOY unconfined), and the rest of Monday, and most of Tuesday is a blur.

Wednesday was delicate, with just a quick pharmacy run for my mother, and the discover that now my sister was sick. Everyone was perky today, and we had a wonderful lunch (above), with my godmother and her husband, who drove up from Cheltenham with the most amazing lunch for us. R has Parkinson’s, but there is much more than a spark of the wonderful man there still, and it was an absolute pleasure to see them.

My godmother was a big food influence on my mother in the 60s, and is one of the people who encouraged me to cook as a child (she is mentioned in my cookbook). A meal cooked by her is a glorious thing, especially when it contains chioggia beets and tomatoes from her garden.

Unfortunately my mother was struck down with the stomach flu a few hours ago, so sis, sausage and I are still in Northamptonshire (supposed to have left earlier this evening), and  I have replaced my nursing cap. Maybe I’ll be back in London tomorrow, maybe…


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Oh, misery! Hope you are all on the mend now . . .


Sounds grim. Did you know there is a huge outbreak of salmonella poisoning in different parts of the country at the moment? Glad that some of you are on the road to recovery.


I hope you all get better soon 🙂 greetings to ‘sausage’!


You poor thing! Strangely, I too was ill on Sunday night and have been unwell all week with ear and throat infection…no gastroenteritis as I first thought last weekend but apparently your ears make you be sick too. The first over-the-phone diagnosis was Bell’s palsy, so I’m pretty happy with just an ear infection…

I hope your mother feels better soon!

Helena xx

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