In the early 90's I bought a house off the King's Road. It turned out to be the very one that Simon Cowell shared with Sinitta and sold reluctantly when things went pear shaped for him in the days before the heady successes of the TV talent shows for which he is now (in)famous. Shortly after moving in I answered the phone one day and instantly recognised the voice at the other end, it was none other than David Hasselhoff ringing from the U.S. looking for Simon. It turned out he needed a place to stay for a few nights as he was doing a gig at the nearby Hammersmith Palais! If you recall he had a single out at the time! We chatted for a while but the conversation came to an abrupt end when he asked me did I ever catch his TV show Baywatch, then a global phenomenon. Just to irritate him I said I'd never heard of it! He hung up. The Hoff in a huff so to speak!
For a while we lived with no furniture and sat on cushions on the floor. We had a series of lodgers to help pay the mortgage including an aspiring shoe designer from Japan. (That was the reason I couldn't offer the spare room to David Hasselhof) Eventually a young Catalan man moved in and we have been close friends ever since. He was from Barcelona a city I had never visited and brought some (to us) quaint and curious Spanish customs with him such as running the washing machine on a full cycle just to wash a pair of socks and underpants!! Another was his penchant for Tomato bread. We used to laugh when he started the preparation ritual. What a waste of a good tomato I used to think but that was before I tasted the result. Now we don't laugh any more and tomato bread has become a table staple which somehow always tastes even better when we are in Spain! Tomato rubbed bread is a minor classic and is eaten as a snack, tapas or accompaniment to many meals at any time in Barcelona.
1 ciabatta or about 8 slices of sourdough
4 Garlic cloves halved
4 Ripe tomatoes
Extra virgin olive oil
Slice the ciabatta crossways and then into sections, place on the grill rack and toast. While still warm rub with garlic halves then with the cut side of the tomatoes. Drizzle with oil and season to taste.
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