Once upon thyme, and whilst eating a galaxy bar, far away (in Cornwall), where resides an Eclectus pet parrot, love looms large, bread pudding and lemon meringue pie are considered currency.
Said parrot is both treasured and ruined respectively and also placated as petulant human child. Though children don’t usually have such a vivid, wondrous bright green plumage, or a sharp, raptor beak . His most obvious human characteristic streak is, however, that of jealousy which cannot be vilified or bettered, he is a one woman bird, a somewhat commendable trait.
I was put into his ‘Mummies arms’ when I was born. Our Mothers were our reciprocal God Parents. More of this in a post a couple of Christmases ago. We are as near to sisters without being sisters as one could ever be, she describes us as cousins, obviously hasn’t thought that one through…. (nowt new there then).
You can therefore appreciate the significance of our bond until, the bright green feathered ‘off spring’ arrived a decade or so ago. She sits on ‘their sofa’ like a female Long John Silver, he resides on her shoulder, cooing and kissing. (green with envy?). He must have recalled meandering down my arm and partaking of a decent amount of Chablis. He was then as ‘kissed as a parrot‘, swigging away to the amusement of us all.
Once in a while and just as we are all dozing off, he will screech loudly to lambast all from our tepid state of mind. How any thing so small can make such a well-timed racket I will never know!
A few years ago, (just before the invidious one truly hated me), he would gift me the odd loving peck on the hand. It was nothing to speak of, and only a few stitches here and there.
His brain, the size of a bean, and comparable mindset remains self convinced that I am the enemy? Whereas I think he has a drink problem, an obdurate attitude, quite obviously lives in denial? It was the time before that when he ate half a jar of pickled onions, gift from her neighbour, that should have turned him?
If anyone, goes to greet let alone hug his her, he goes berserk, when I go near her and has a complete melt down, the like of which I wish I could describe, an embittered and irrational streak shall we say.
She has two great culinary delights, one of which is bread pudding (recipe here) and the other is Lemon Meringue in all its many sizes and guises. It was her birthday. She had moved house, sorry ‘they’ had moved house and I went down with a red cross parcel of foods including the pre cooked base, the lemon curd, my hand whisk and half a dozen fresh eggs from which to make her absolute favourite.
His expression, though how I’ve no idea how, had sullied further, and deteriorated. His whole demeanour changed from im-peck-able past distaste. Quite obviously my fault he had to move house and was unsettled? I took him a piece of apple, which if I cold read his coded scream correctly meant that I could put it where the sun rarely shines. I proffered a grape which was received as well as the prospect of an enema. (I would have been only too pleased to oblige if asked). I showed no dismay when he flurried his wings and covered me with seed and water whilst shedding spare plumage and decibel shrieks. He refused to settle.
“I’ll let him out” sayeth she. “OK dear”. “You sit down with him and I’ll hit your lovely new kitchen and fabricate the pie”. So back on Long John/Jane Silvers shoulder he went, protector of the shoulder length, menopausal highlights. He ate his apple hand fed by his Mummie. As the noxious impugn, I cleared off out of his way.
Frittering away with the egg whites and warmed sugar which obliged the rugged geology of a magnificent meringue, it took only 1 woman to hit the power switch and get the sparkly new oven going where 3 burley men, including ones wholly owned mathematician, to faff and fail.
Long Jane Blonde / Silver and Paxo (new nick name) came to see what all the hysterical laughter was about. She/they kept a discreet distance, two lovely stone steps making a perfect perch for them, as the rather magnificent meringue went into the oven (set on crematoria).
The scrum of men folk disappeared, we two/three old birds were roaring irrespectfully as I removed the most marvellous meringue from the oven. “Ohh!” she was euphoric, beyond thrilled her exaltation not missed by petulant, perplexed, Paxo the parrot.
She held him whilst I nipped to show the jolly incompetents and swiftly returned with the uber-pud now covered in icing sugar and edible glitter.
Having internalized his anger, the hostile one could take no more and exploded like champagne after a Grand Prix, spraying toxic squawks and waspish feathered fury. He shot across the kitchen, fast as a bullet, formed himself into a cartoon dart.
He pile-drove straight into the sparkly meringue which buffered, completely engulfed and absorbed his impact. Gasps and shrieks respectively! She pulled the small, emerald and perfectly formed one like a cork from a bottle. My, my how the mighty had fallen!
He was absolutely plastered and engulfed in meringue. His dear little eyes and beak, swiftly revealed , we dried and wrapped him in absorbent paper and tea cloths. His mephitic angst obliterated, now a needy little soul we were, indeed, all over him to make swift reparation, though through stifled hysterics and blurred mascara.
Eventually he was returned to the safe haven of his cage where he spent the next 24 hours preening and handing his new addiction, no longer on the booze, this time to sugar. Once over his ordeal he swiftly returned to his formidable self and loathing of the maker of meringue.
Oh the ice cream recipe, I knew we were here for something …. 2 parts whipped cream to one part lemon curd, cut and fold gently to combine, crackling meringue through ones fingers is up there with popping bubble wrap for many of us, stir in as dust, gravel or chunks as suits your mood. Lob into suitable container and abandon to freezer over night. Topped with zest of lemon and invariably edible glitter which adds ‘tart’ to the tart flavours.
The pristine flavours of sweet and sharp Lemon Meringue deserve our gratitude, as you do mine for all your kindnesses for the last 3 years from whence one dipped a tentative toe into the blogosphere. Inspired by a bumptious hooray, upstart, journo who edits a foodie magazine and maintained that no one ever reads food blogs!
Cue outcry…” Well we do!”
The world of foodies remains a cherished currency, whilst the media flog and overflow with unwarranted opinions I love to hear what, how, where, real people eat, source, loving pimp and prepare their edibles. Cooking up their respective storms for the people in their lives.
I find it (and you all) truly inspiring. Sincerest thanks for the pleasure of your company.
Dare I say you remain as the wind beneath my wings, and very fortunately only my wings thus far, trust that’s OK with you Paxo?
Toot toot x
With his ‘plus one, and velour amour’ sigh.