Sunday, 24 February 2013

Slathering Gold onto Hot Toast

Receiving post is one of life's loveliest little pleasures. And unexpected post from back home in the UK is even better. So imagine my delight when, within the space of two days, I received two parcels from the UK. Although they were from unconnected senders in two different countries, but they were both united in their theme: Marmite!

The first contained a special edition Gold Marmite. Fabulous gilded packaging aside, it's particularly marvellous due to the sprinkling of gold flecks within the Marmite itself. I was also touched because the lovely sender isn't herself a fan of this 'brown sludge' (as she calls it) and so I appreciated this gesture even more. Having such an iconic jar, there's no doubt in my mind that it'll be adorning my desk as an ornament once it's been dutifully slathered over hot buttered toast


Two days later a second mysterious package landed on my door step. Nestled inside was The Ultimate Marmite Cookbook! As well as being full of unusual recipes including Spinach, Marmite and Mozzarella Muffins, Prawn and Marmite Sesame Toast and a rather quizzically named Marmite Steam Train, it is also chockablock with adorable vintage illustrations (see above).


My love goes back a long way, from taking sneaky bites out of my Dad's hot toast when his head was turned, to my Mum bundling me off to primary school with little square of Marmite sandwichesThe love affair continued through my teenage years and I must confess that during my final year of uni, I basically lived on Nigella Lawson's silkily smooth Marmite pasta recipe. For the adventurous among you or those in Italy who are strong enough to brave the scorn of Italians, here's the recipe: 

(Serves 4-6)

Credit: Recipe from Nigella Kitchen
- 375g dried spaghetti
- 50g unsalted butter
- 1 tsp Marmite, to taste
- freshly grated parmesan, to serve
1. Cook the spaghetti in plenty of boiling, salted water, according to the packet instructions.
2. When the pasta is almost cooked, melt the butter in a small saucepan and add the Marmite and one tablespoon of the pasta water, mixing thoroughly to dissolve.
3. Reserve half a cup of the pasta water; then drain the pasta and pour the Marmite mixture over the drained spaghetti, adding a little of the reserved pasta water to amalgamate if required. Serve with plenty of grated parmesan.

What do you miss when you're away from home?
Are you ever surprised by what you miss?
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