week twenty-four – snukandinski memory à la rahel

oh, the memories. i had a really hard time deciding what to cook for this week, simply because gioia and i share so many memories. not just a lot of memories per se, but food memories in particular. i remember the first time gioia ever came to my (then) house, we made raspberry tiramisu together. since then, we have cooked and baked in each other’s company countless times. it’s one of my favorite things, standing in the kitchen with her, some good music in the background (remember when we attempted cooking in time with the music? it worked…for about twenty seconds.). we make a good kitchen team, gioia and i. and because there are so many, i thought i’d make a list (as we do) of some of the cooking/eating memories (in no particular order):

– raffaello crushin’. in the olden days, when zumba was still a foreign concept to almost everybody in switzerland, gioia and i went to classes once a week (wednesdays, if i remember it correctly?!). oftentimes, i’d go to her house after the class and we’d treat ourselves to a sweet (or two *winkwink*). one time, our candy of choice were raffaellos and because we had been carrying them around with us for a while, they got crushed inside the bag. from that moment on, we have been convinced raffaellos taste much better crushed than whole. go on, try it.

– picnics. we love having picnics. in fact, i could make a whole list with just the picnics we’ve had. the one in tel aviv, where we spent the evening lying on a stone wall just off the beach, listening to passenger as the sun slowly set over the horizon. the sunrise picnic during our summer holiday on mallorca. the new year’s eve picnic overlooking all the small towns of the baselbiet. last year in portugal, after cycling along the douro. may the picnics never end!

– the 3 a.m. rösti – a classic.

– that one time we ate four ben&jerry’s ice creams. did we really, though?

– the first time making cinnamon rolls, terrified of doing everything wrong.

– making pancakes at my dad’s apartment in zurich. (not to mention the maple syrup quest the evening before.)

– tesco cheese rolls. with a side of blueberries, of course. this became a thing when we spent two and half months in london preparing for the cambridge proficiency exam. we went to a school in central london and each day, we’d have a break around eleven. during said break, we’d head to the nearest tesco and buy two cheese rolls and blueberries. that’s how easily satisfied we were back then. a few hours later, at lunchtime, we’d go to a subway and order “our” subs: two veggie delites on italian herb and cheese bread. pickles for you, olives for me. honey mustard for the both of us.

there are so many more, but i’ll stop there. wait, i have one more. the most important one, at least concerning this blog here. i think gioia already mentioned our treehouse sleepover once before…but did she mention the food? one evening, gioia came over to my house, took the bag of things my mom had packed for me under her instruction, blindfolded me and led me to the car. we drove around for a while (i think she even took a few wrong turns to “confuse” me) before it was time for the revealment. when we got out of the car and she took off my blindfold we were standing on a field, a treehouse in front of us! after setting up our beds (hammocks with a few extra cushions and sleeping bags), gioia made us dinner (which was delicious, of course). however, let’s fast forward to dessert: grilled peaches. i had never had peaches prepared on a barbecue before that evening, but, people, it was love at first bite. so when my mom suggested having a bbq for dinner yesterday, i knew it was time to get out those peaches.

as part of the main course, i made peach and halloumi skewers. no bbq is complete without halloumi at our house, so pairing the sweet taste of the peaches with the saltiness of the cheese was the first thing that occurred to me when i was thinking about what to make. i consulted google and guess what? it gave me this: grilled peach and halloumi skewers with basil-jalapeño sauce (gioia and her love for jalapeños is a whole other story..). basil and jalapeños are both something i always have lying around, so it was a no-brainer to make the sauce as well. it was delicious: spicy, tangy, summery perfection (tasted great with roasted chicken, too).

as i had some leftover peaches, i made a simple little dessert as well, grilling the halved peaches and topping them off with a little bit (or a lot) of mascarpone to which i added maple syrup and sprinkling that with toasted almonds. bbq success, if i do say so myself.

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