Here in the wilds of Derbyshire, these last few days have been both unseasonably warm, and unmistakably September – the evenings are closing in much earlier, and the foliage is turning on the trees.
For me, September is always one of the best times to be in Greece, and I regret that this year I’m not there. The sea’s still warm, but the sun has lost the fierceness of its heat; the August crowds have all gone home, and the islanders relax and take some time off. Even my ex-husband could occasionally be persuaded to let business run itself for a day or so, and we’d load up the boat with sleeping-bags and a few beers and take ourselves fishing.
If the wind picks up, September’s the season for palamides, members of the tuna family. They’re caught by trailing fluorescent squid lures behind a moving boat – a great excuse for meandering along the coast with no particular place to go. Palamides are big fish, and the landing of them is a bloody business. But sprinkled with wild oregano and grilled over a driftwood fire, they’re wonderful eating – a slice or two of bread, a salad of tomatoes and red onions and a couple of those beers, and you’ve a meal fit for Hermes himself.
Author of the Mysteries of the Greek Detective, books with a touch of mythology set in almost-contemporary Greece, and featuring lots of fabulous Greek food.
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