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The prospect of S’mores fired her up intensely. From deep in her belly, she longed to stoke a fire, so its rising flames and cackling sounds could warm her and melt her ‘mallows till they softened and oozed their sugary goodness onto some good grahams. And the chocolate would quickly follow, it too melting in a marble sea of toasted flavours, perfect for a midsummer’s night on the range. Any range. With the stars ‘bove n up and the silver crescent of the moon shining on.

Oh, the beginning and end were here. For her, this was the adventure – this sit down, tales by moonlight and laughter with flames. This, the steaming cup of hot chocolate. Not the trek or setting up of the tent, not the food in tin cans and the bushes for bathrooms, no, her heart lusted not after one of those things but she sat there anyway, knowing the first bite of a S’more would be heaven or hell.

Which would it be? Only her lips could judge.

And if it was heaven, then the drive, the cold and the rain even would have been worth it. All of it, superb payment for one bit of this.

And per chance, it all went wrong and the S’more  experience was hell in itself, then what?

She says ‘It would still be heaven, of a lesser plane for then I know now that camping again, I need not do!’

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Oh yes, this weekend I am going camping. Outdoors. Braving the elements, with daughter #1.

Perhaps I should rephrase that. This weekend, my daughter and I are going camping, with the Girls Scouts. Our group is dominated by people from the States.

Of course, I had to look for the business case before I was convinced it was worth a trip. Descriptions of S’mores later, I was convinced that I had found the value. I mean, I’d read enough about S’mores to understand it ‘legendary’ and because I will lend myself to good causes I signed up to go camping. Even when my husband copped out at the last minute.

I am a bit nervous, even though I have all my kit. My last memories of camping, a good decade ago are not pleasant.

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It was my first trip to Spain as a Geology student and we headed north to the Cordillera Cantábrica. It was an amazing trip and I learnt so much.

  1. Black people do get sunburned – I did.
  2. No sunshine in the Northern hemisphere can make me feel secure – It was boiling hot in the day in Spain, but at night, the temperatures were sub-zero.
  3. Camping was not my thing

And ten years later, I find myself being lured into a camp trip, lured by the prospect of toasted marshmallows.

What would people do for food hey?

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So, if things go south, I’ll remind myself of the good times I’ve had.

With rhubarb. And lime. Roasted rhubarb of course, for its super sweet and almost girly colour.

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Roasted Rhubarb Limeade

Ingredients

Yields – 2 servings

300g rhubarb, rinsed and cut into 2cm pieces
1/2 cup caster sugar
1 cup water
1/2 of a split vanilla pod
3 juniper berries, lightly crushed
Juice of 1/2 a lime

How to
Mix the rhubarb pieces with 1/4 cup of sugar, tossing well so the pieces are coated.

IMG_3955Bake in an oven at 200 degrees centigrade for 15-20 minutes till the rhubarb is soft (test using the tip of a sharp knife)

IMG_4001While the rhubarb is roasting, combine the remaining 1/4 cup sugar, water, vanilla and juniper berries. Bring to a boil and reduce the heat to a gentle simmer, stirring well till the sugar is melted. Remove from the heat and add the lime juice, then stir well.
When the rhubarb is done roasting, pour the lime sugar syrup into the roasting tin and stir well. Scrape the vanilla seeds and discard the pod.

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Pour into a blender/use a hand blender and process till smooth. Pass the mixture through a sieve, pressing on the mixture with a spoon to extract as much juice as possible. Discard the thick mush left over and let the mixture cool down. Refrigerate till ready to serve.

IMG_3980To serve, share the rhubarb syrup between two glasses and top up with your drink of choice – lemonade, ginger ale or sparkling water, ice cubes and lime slices.

IMG_3965This is heading off to Weekend herb blogging #235, started by Kalyn , and now run by Haalo of Cook (almost) Anything at Least Once who is also this weeks host.

Tell me, would you go camping for S’mores? Is it worth it? Don’t tell me I’m just being silly….please. Anyhow, I’ll tell you ALL when we come back so wish me success, please!

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