I was experimenting with the new food processor and its special beating blade. The goal was a Pavlova meringue: crisp on the outside and softly marshmallow beneath. The first problem was a dreadful clattering from the bowl. I wasn’t sure if the blade had broken or the whole structure had come apart. The sugar and egg whites had already become a soft billow but I had to delve to the bottom to recover a mysterious teaspoon that had been rattling around with the beater. Gently spooning the final mix on to the baking sheet, I discovered that the hoped-for billowing mound was piled over an errant spatula. Digging that out reduced the whole confection in to a sticky spreading mess. Nothing could rescue it from spreading in to a puddle in the oven.
Meanwhile, I’d been steaming the 11th remaining reserve mini Christmas pudding for lunch. With all the disasters, the water had evaporated and the pudding bowl welded itself to the base. The pudding was still edible but the bowl has gone to that place where redundant cooking equipment is buried.
Thank heavens there are still another 10 puddings to sustain us for the next few months.
The great news of the day was that one of the local beekeepers delivered a swarm to the new hive in the garden: there should be honey for tea in a year’s time, barring more disasters!