Strawberries and Borage with Flaked Almonds

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I love borage. I’ve found it in almost all the countries I’ve visited, and I can never resist photographing it. When I pop my clogs I’d like borage to be grown on my grave. Grave-side borage. Traditionally a medicinal herb, it has long been used in Greek stews and soups or to fill pastas, but I hadn’t eaten the little blue starflowers whole until I had them at the Crillon le Brave in the south of France, with strawberries and toasted almonds. It was stunningly simple and so good I had three portions. Borage is supposed to be mighty good for the tum… and for PMS.

Ingredients

  • 450g/1lb strawberries, hulled
  • A splash of Pimm’s
  • 50g/2oz flaked almonds
  • 2 tablespoons icing sugar
  • A handful of borage flowers
  • 1 teaspoon lavender flowers, dried

Method

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350F/gas mark 4 and line a baking tray with greaseproof paper.

Cut the strawberries into halves and quarters, depending on size, and place them in a bowl. Add a good splash of Pimm’s and leave to marinate.

Wash the flaked almonds in a sieve and drain them thoroughly, then put them into a bowl and toss with the icing sugar. Spread the almonds out on the prepared baking tray. Place them in the oven for 10–15 minutes. Repeat with the lavender flowers and add them to the baking tray of almonds once the nuts have been in the oven for 5 minutes. Remove once both are toasted and slightly golden. Let them cool.

Meanwhile, spoon the strawberries into a bowl and scatter over the borage. When the almonds are cool, crumble them over the top, sprinkle on the lavender flowers, drizzle with the leftover Pimm’s from the bowl, and serve.

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