Picnic Basket home
Well, thank goodness the weather is finally brightening up. I was actually starting to think I was still living in Wales, which, let me tell you, was not what I signed up for when I came to Barcelona nearly nine years ago today. What I did sign up for was a life lived mainly outdoors. In lieu of garden parties and barbecues, there would be beach fiestas and picnics, and picnics, like garden parties, bring to mind Pimms.
Having grown up in Britain, I tend to assume that everyone knows what Pimms is, but I discovered recently it really is a terribly British thing. Pretty much nobody outside the country has ever heard of it, so for those of you who don’t know, I give you a brief history of Pimms and more importantly what to do with it.
Pimms was first made back in 1823 by one James Pimm, who was the owner of an oyster bar in London. Back then, it was essentially a gin-based liqueur infused with various secret spices that Mr Pimm sold as a digestif. It took off and soon he was supplying many of the oyster bars around London popular at the time. The company grew, and grew, and was taken over by Sir Horatio Davies in 1875 who popularised it around Britain and the colonies. These days it is the drink of choice at Royal Ascot, Wimbledon and the Henley boat races, all quintessentially British activities toasted by a quintessentially British drink. It’s been something of a national treasure ever since, and though variants on the theme have been explored over the years using rum, whisky and vodka, it’s the original ‘number 1 cup’ that remains beloved by the nation.
Pimms Number 1 Cup (makes one 2-litre jug)
Quarter fill the jug with ice. Add slices of orange, strawberries, cucumber and mint sprigs. Pour over enough Pimms to cover. Top off with cold lemonade. Stir and serve