Cacophony of Error

Saturday 18th June 2023

Last night to Holland Park Opera for Hansel and Gretel. There’s a bit called ‘Evening Prayer’ which is very lovely.

I was to do the main course for the picnic. Coronation Quiche – second attempt. But when I looked in my bakeware cupboard, my quiche tin was still at Anthony Mottram’s where we had the Coronation. Had to buy another one – deeper. Sides of tart sank in blind baking. Mixture flowed over the sides. I couldn’t believe it. Howled and howled. Banged the work surface. Nobody came even though it turned out the next-door occupant had returned from Greece. Although not expected until Sunday. Managed somehow to get the loathsome pastry out of the tin and the egg gloop kitchen-papered from underneath.

Cousin Mowhampton, who was doing 1st course and pudding, texted beforehand, referring erroneously to Coronation chicken as my main. In this heat I hadn’t the energy to put her right. She was proposing smoked salmon, so I thought it wouldn’t matter anyway. But no, she’d done a tart too, with asparagus. Smoked salmon on top.

So menu-ing disaster of unprecedented proportions – two tart courses. And no help. The authorities didn’t lift a finger. You’d have thought, having ordered those of us who live alone to remain alone for six weeks without remission, they would be more than prepared for such a nightmare, swooping down at once with measures.

Tomorrow is my garden opening (the second this season). The Maharajah only likes chocolate for dessert. Nigella said her vegan choc cake was easy. I tried six shops for ‘instant expresso coffee’ and ‘coconut butter’ … the cake blew up out of its tin and took twice as long to cook as stated. Still sunk in the middle. The bits that broke off I ate. Disgusting. Horribly sweet. The vegan ‘icing’ separated out – noxious oil oozed forth. Had to throw it away. I said to the Maharajah, ‘If this doesn’t make up for the evils of the British in India, nothing will.’

My Vic Sponge though went like a dream. I felt guilty because Queen Victoria was an Imperialist and took possession of the Koh-i-Nor. Until that is I turned it out. Strange lumps of sugar disbursed through the cake fabric. Somehow hadn’t mixed properly in the machine. Why? Why? Why?

So Vic Sponge will probably be filthy as well.

Who ever heard of the sugar not mixing properly? I didn’t like to run the blades too long for fear of curdling in this weather.

The Corrie Quiche, by the way, was, as the Germans says, obergecheesen. The tarragon didn’t come through. Possibly because not all the mixture would fit in.

So have got that to do all over again – possibly for second Glydenbourniana.

Can’t go on much longer.

Nigella's Vegan Choc Cake. Doesn't have any Choc in it, now I think of It. Horror show

Nigella’s Vegan Choc Cake. Doesn’t have any Choc in it, now I think of It. Horror show

Nigella's Vegan Choc 'icing'... So useful

Nigella’s Vegan Choc ‘icing’… So useful

Fate of the Choc 'Icing' - about £5m in the Bin

Fate of the Choc ‘Icing’ – about £5m in the Bin

Posted Saturday, June 17, 2023 under Adrian Edge day by day.


  1. Laura Malcolm says:

    Such suffering. In France this weekend I haven’t lifted a cooking finger. Just a trip to the market to source seafood, cheese and fruit of such perfection that there is nothing to be done. Could you visit a French market ahead ahead of your next Glyndebourne in order to avoid more agony?

  2. Adrian Edge says:

    It’s the lack of a helicopter that is so trying. Then one could shop Europe-wide with ease…

Leave a Reply