I would never have imagined I would make good friends on the internet. It just wasn't something I entertained! But since joining Violets' Pantry (after Nigella's forum closed) it has become a place to catch up with interesting people from all over the world and all walks of life, connected primarily by our shared love of cooking. Violets started the forum, with Pistachio coming in soon after to help with lots of the techie stuff. Between them they moderated a lovely friendly safe place to share recipes, photos of food and plenty of day to day happenings in our lives. There have been so many events, births, marriages, engagements, graduations, birthdays -you name it we have shared it.
Sadly, we had a first recently, one which has knocked us all. Pistachio fell ill quite suddenly and after a worrying time in hospital in and out of consciousness, she died on November 5th.
This post is a wee tribute to her, as she was such a constant presence in all of the lives of those who frequent 'The Pantry' - and also Mr X, where she had many friends too.
She had a strong moral compass and always stood up for what she thought, firmly and resolutely yet it never felt threatening. I always admired her for her courage of conviction. She was a fabulous cook and we shared a love for Mediterranean and Moroccan food, I cooked many a recipe from her lovely blog. She inspired me to start this blog and was helpful in the set up phase, in fact my first ever post was one of her recipes.
My life is certainly the better for having 'known' her and we are all so sad that she has gone.
Tonight's dinner was especially for her.....Moroccan lamb and chickpeas with gingered couscous. Her method of cooking couscous is one I often use now, it is quick and easy and lifts it to something a bit more special. She added one tsp of ground ginger per cup of couscous and her instructions are as follows:
Toast the couscous with the powdered ginger and salt to taste in a smallish thick-bottomed pan, when it starts to smell nutty and aromatic take it off the heat. Now pour over exactly one and a half times the amount of boiling water to couscous and quickly clamp on a tightly fitting lid. Let stand exactly ten minutes. Fluff with a fork, cover with a cloth and then put the lid on again. Let rest five minutes before serving. Best couscous ever!
I agree it IS the best couscous ever Pi! I will miss your down to earth input on the Pantry and your gorgeous cooking.