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(contains pork)

Hello again, Lunch! Welcome back, Diet Pepsi In The Car! And Coffee At Work - it's been too long, how lovely to see you.

As usual, it will take me a couple of days to repress the imposed connection between drinking water and shame. But we made an effort to have some good indulgent food yesterday - no shuwa unfortunately, as most of our kind donors are out of town. By the way, where are the goats this year? Has there been a blanket ban on keeping them at home? Some kind of caprine epidemic? For years, I've been woken by their bleats days before Eid, which sets off the inevitable rush of sympathy followed by self-loathing at my hypocrisy. It's quite the tradition now. And this year, because of the twice-daily dog walks, I have an unparalleled knowledge of what animals are where in our neighbourhood - we have to avoid mother cats, hapless chickens, etc. Not a goat in sight.oLD 

To the first post-Ramadan lunch. Annoyingly, my favourite recipe resource,, is currently full of suggestions on just what to do with that marvellous glut of blackberries from the garden. I'm sure it's because berries here are so massively expensive and our garden is made of sand that I find this slightly nauseating and smug. But ploughing resentfully through these recipes did put me in the mood for fruit, and we had the best lunch: peaches, mozzarella, prosciutto and mint, with an olive oil and lemon dressing. To offset the price of the prosciutto, go get some own-brand Carrefour mozzarella - it's on special offer now, so there are nine in our fridge. And use those weirdly squished-looking Tunisian peaches, that look like they've been genetically modified to stack better in crates; they're cheaper, fresher, and sweeter than the European ones. This dish is the only one I can think of that is just a load of ingredients on a plate, no preparation needed except taking things out of their packaging and ripping them up a bit, but that is also different and delicious enough to serve to guests.

And dinner was also fruit-inspired and brilliant. (If I'm sounding nauseating and smug myself, please note that my breakfast was toast, and some yoghurt that I shared with the dog.) Maple-glazed grilled salmon with pineapple salsa. The photo is terrible - two yellowish foodstuffs on a yellow plate under the yellow lamp on my side of the sofa - but the flavours are fantastic together. Here's the recipe. Use a bit less maple syrup and a lot of good mustard, it's what brings it all together and saves it from over-sweetness.

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