By: Blonde Two

‘No plates today,’ said Mate Susan, ‘We all eat out of the common dish.’

Now if you don’t know that this is a quote from Swallows and Amazons (not quite my favourite quote), then you need to go back and revisit your childhood. The Walker children are safely camped on the island, Swallow is moored in the harbour and Susan is cooking eggs for tea over an open fire.

Firepit Garden

This summer Mr B2 have spent a fair few evenings doing exactly the same thing. Well, we didn’t have a boat, tents weighed down with stones or an island, but we did have a back garden, a fire pit and a most excellent frying pan. It takes surprisingly little time to light a fire and cook over it. Eating from the common dish or pot means just what you think it does, you leave the food in the pan and you have a spoon or fork each.

Common Dish

This, as it turns out, is a remarkably sensible way to eat; sharing a pot means that you have much less washing up, you eat more slowly and, because you are sharing, you are forced to be less greedy. I will confess that I have been so busy cooking, eating and chatting that I have forgotten to take photos of our ‘spare ribs with rice noodles’, our ‘pork in paprika’ and our ‘chicken and coconut rice’. I did however remember to take the picture above of last week’s ‘pork and potatoes in a chilli marinade’.

The summer weather encourages all kinds of outdoors cooking. Personally I don’t enjoy barbecuing (fine if someone else wants to do it); but I have really enjoyed the open-fire experience, we haven’t needed the heat from the fire to keep us warm, but hopefully we will continue into the autumn.

PS You will have to ask Six-Foot-Blonde what my favourite Swallows and Amazons quote it! He has heard it enough times!