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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.
Recipe: Bombay Sapphire & Tonic Jellies for Wimbledon
- 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.