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Gin & Tonic and Wimbledon, both essential to the great British summer, and now the centre court at Wimbledon has a roof the tennis can carry on regardless of whether the summer is that great or not. Many a men’s final have I snoozed through having had a large G&T before lunch!
My perfect gin & tonic is made with Bombay Sapphire – from the freezer, chilled Schweppes tonic – from a fresh bottle or can and a frozen slice or both lemon and lime – no need for ice which only dilutes the drink with chilled ingredients and the frozen slices. Presentation is everything and I like my drink served in a glass tumbler – with thin sides and a more substantial base. Simple things which add to the experience.
In a twist on the classic G&T – my preferred gin has always been Bombay Sapphire – I set mine into a jelly and served in a petty Martini glass with a blob of lemon cream. It is elegant, sophisticated and delicious and perfect to eat whilst watching the tennis on a summer afternoon.
I shopped at Waitrose (photos and details here), buying my gin (on special offer at the moment), lemon, lime, cream and tonic water – standard ingredients to make this impressive Wimbledon pudding from.
As it seems impossible to buy organic gelatine I use agar agar to set my jellies, it is vegetarian and I do not have to worry about the animal welfare issues of cheap gelatine. It has the added advantage of setting at room temperature, making it portable and suitable for picnics – and this time meant I did not need to remove a shelf from the fridge to fit my massive Martini glasses in. Agar agar also sets quickly, and although I find it is not always clear I think the other benefits outweigh this. Remember to let the jelly cool enough before pouring it into the glasses as a hot liquid can crack them.
We enjoyed our gin and tonic jellies on the sofa in front of Wimbledon after lunch – personally I think they should be serving them alongside the strawberries and cream next year.
- 250 ml tonic water
- 1 tbs agar agar flakes – or your choice of setting agent
- 50 ml gin – I used Bombay Sapphire
- 2 lime slices
- 100 ml double cream
- zest half a lemon
- 1 tsp icing sugar
- 2 lemon slices
Pour the tonic into a small pan and sprinkle the agar flakes on top. Heat and allow to simmer before stirring. Simmer for a few minutes until the agar has dissolved.
Allow to cool slightly and add the gin.
Pour into martini glasses and add a slice of lime to each jelly. Allow to set.
Whip the cream, lemon zest and icing sugar until holding its shape, but still quite soft. Dollop the cream on top of each jelly, top with a slice of lemon and spring of mint and enjoy immediately.
Read more about setting jellies.