‘I like to celebrate Saturday with extended aperitivi’

Matty Cremona is one of Malta’s foremost cookbook writers. She believes that weekends are all about happy times and lazy afternoons.
Matty Cremona

The weekend starts: Rarely with a bang; usually an exhausted whimper.

Early riser? Sidney, our beloved ginger cat, wakes me up for a shockingly early breakfast every day. I do stagger back to bed, clutching a steaming cup of coffee after feeding him, but it isn’t the same at all.

I’m at my most relaxed when: I’m busy enjoying a post prandial snooze on the sofa.

Go out or spend time in? I like both staying in and going out.

Guilty weekend pleasure: I like to celebrate Saturday with extended aperitivi. What could be better after a morning running errands than to enjoy some snacks with friends? Among my favourites are slices of silky mortadella and Parma ham with some deliciously herby, hot focaccia and olive oil, or anchovies and burrata on Maltese bread grilled with rosemary, garlic, and olive oil, all served with a very large Campari soda and a bowl of briny olives. One could throw in some hot, crunchy fritters, too, for fun or some braised artichoke hearts when they’re in season or naughty pizzette fritte for that really greedy moment.

Saturdays give me time to: Go to the farmer’s market at Ta’ Qali. I never miss it. The splendour on display is inspirational; bright orange pumpkins, creamy white cauliflowers, forest green broccoli and paler Romanesco, bundles of crisp spinach, crunchy lettuces of all hues, frizzled endive, tightly furled young artichokes and Florence fennel, mounds of sweet smelling oranges, clementines, grapefruits and lemons, and much, much more. There is local honey, fresh eggs, ġbejniet, olive oil, capers… So much colour, so much potential flavour, all deliciously fresh.

Sundays are for: Sunday Mass and family lunches. Happy times and lazy afternoons chatting away.

My childhood weekends were: I am blessed with a plethora of cousins and friends and spent my childhood weekends running wild with them. I think I would have passed out had I been my own mother.

I round off the weekend with: A quiet evening reading a good book.

Check out more Sunday Circle features or learn about the Camino Maltes for those who wish to tie their pilgrimage in Spain to Malta.

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