- Published: 07 August 2018
Sleat | Isle of Skye
Marcello takes a moment on an anniversary to reflect on life, he shares his favourite street food snacks, perfect for a summer sporting occasion with family and his thoughts on this World Cup and its rather unexpected outcome.
Around this time last year my first book ‘The Key Ingredient’ had been published and whilst it felt like a great achievement, it was very sadly overshadowed by my Mother-in-law’s illness. Iris had often asked me when I was going to get around to writing a cookbook and I feel blessed she got to see the finished article before she passed away. Now, on the anniversary I’m reminded of just how fragile life can be and equally, how important it is to savour.
Food is essential to life, part of our daily lives and central to every occasion, be it a wedding, birthday or wake, food is the key ingredient! It’s there as a celebration, for energy, nutrition, growth and comfort – let’s face it, when the chips are down, the heart warming feeling of eating your favourite meal or snack, can be enough to raise a smile.
Looking back at the last month I’d sum it up as sporty, with the World Cup, which didn’t quite go according to plan as a native Brazilian! And Wimbledon, which also did not play out as we’d hoped, with the absence of Andy Murray. As we shouted and jeered at the TV screen it truly pulled our heart strings and reminded us just how important our roots are to us.
With the addition of Misty, our now nine-month-old collie, this World Cup has been even more entertaining than ever, with her sheer curiosity and keen eye never leaving the ball on the screen and occasional determination to immerse herself into the TV itself, as if to be transported to Russia in an instant.
Misty has been the source of bewilderment and anxiety, slightly alleviated by the fact that our extremely wonderful and devoted veterinary team, rather fortuitously live at the end of our road! She has shown no bias towards country or team, instead delighting in the roar of the crowd and the goal replays!
Four years ago during the Brazil World Cup, we’d often find a little posse of our children and their friends appearing in our kitchen at half time, keen to try some typical Brazilian street food. These bite size morsels made their way onto the Kinloch Canape selection and make a regular appearance throughout the year; Pao de Queijo – a cheese bread puff with a gooey centre and Coxinhas; Brazilian Chicken Croquettes, originating from Sao Paulo, consisting of shredded chicken fried in bean batter and moulded into the shape of a pear.
I’m passionate about Brazil but Scotland is also my home and I take great pride and pleasure in the wonderful produce on offer at this time of year. I’m making the best of the summer vegetables, I use asparagus, broad beans, peas and wild fennel to form a delicate bed on which to serve wild sea trout, pan fried to ensure a crispy skin and virtually shown the oven to gently cook a little further. This delicate fish, so rich in flavour, can be enjoyed at its best with just a drizzle of dressing; no time-consuming preparation, no goggles or dry ice required, just wonderfully fresh, uncomplicated, seasonal produce.
Scotland’s lamb is amongst the world’s finest and a pleasure to use. We serve tender lamb loin served with a delicious herb and nut coating, gently seared in the pan and well rested, it’s a favourite of our guests.
I feel extremely lucky to be on this beautiful island, what an amazing summer it’s been. One thing’s for sure, Scotland’s ice cream sales have rocketed and as for Kinloch, well, we just can’t make it fast enough, be it popcorn, rhubarb or creamy orange brulee flavour.