If ever Mr P is missing from the bed when I wake up in the morning, you can be sure he is in the kitchen with something on the fire.
This time it was two red bream, from Ranya Fresh Fish in Kilburn High Road, filleted, seasoned overnight and coated in flour before going in the pan. "£8 for the two," said Mr P proudly, like he had just caught them himself, "and plantains, three for £1 from the shop next door".
Mr P loves to bring me little hot morsels straight from the pan, wrapped in a little screw of kitchen paper, a twist of lime on the side. I love to eat them 😁. I sit out on the back veranda, looking at the trees with a cup of tea and tasty bites of fish to keep me going until breakfast.
Eventually, he calls me to the table: golden fish, fried plantain, a little gravy of scallions, tomatoes and peppers, hot toast on the side. Today I was eating leftovers with salad, Mr P had already left early for work.
We also had June Plum juice with ginger he had found in one of the supermarkets. He was looking for some fresh, usually £18-£22 a box, but none were there, too early yet, maybe.
So I have a fat plantain left to roast and eat later with steamed cabbage. Mr P found an old second hand barbecue, sturdy but with folding legs and a handle so you can carry it around. Maybe we'll try some steak or chicken to go with the steamed cabbage.
I have some butter beans soaking, I'll cook them with some scallions and garlic. I like them plain and dry on the side, Mr P likes a little gravy. He was saying they (his crew) heard a cock crowing in the streets round the back of the fish shop, while they were out working. It reminded him of being at his grandmother's in Grenada and everyone's cock crowing one after the other all down the valley.
Strange to hear a cock in London these days.