After the success of the banana, I was a bit worried that this series would descend into an awkward succession of shame-faced posts in which I tried all the fruits and said “actually that was fine, I don’t really know what the fuss was all about.”
Then came the third fruity challenge: the raspberry.
I have several complaints to lodge with the raspberry.
Firstly: why are they so hairy? Those tiny, sparse little hairs that give the whole thing a slightly creepy texture.
Secondly: why are they so sharp and sour? I put the first raspberry in my mouth, shuddered at the texture, but thought “it doesn’t taste too bad.” Then I bit down and made the same face I used to make when I sipped wine for the first few times. Not cool.
Hattie said I had to eat a handful of raspberries, not just the one. Otherwise it “wouldn’t count” apparently. “One raspberry is not the same as one banana, Amy”. Blah blah blah.
So after much complaining, I put a handful into a bowl and we settled down to an episode of The West Wing, which I am watching for the first time.
Pro tip: watching TV is a good way to trick yourself into eating food you don’t want to eat, because it gives you something else to focus on. In this particular instance, it also allowed me to trick Hattie into eating half of my bowl for me.*
I was happy that we finished the bowl – there was a kind of masochistic satisfaction to reaching the end, kind of like how I imagine marathon runners feel, or people who still watch Question Time – but I’m not sure I’ll be rushing to do it again.
* This is definitely not true, I think she just felt sorry for me. I’m a grown woman who is afraid of fruit, after all.
Part two: Eton Mess (aka the Tory party, amirite?)
As usual, I enjoyed the fruit a lot more when it was covered in sugar and cream. I still wasn’t over the moon about the raspberries themselves, but at least there was a lot of good stuff there to make up for it, and the texture problem goes away when they’re all mashed up and creamy.
These miniature Eton messes also have the benefit of being quick to make, and easy to serve at dinner parties. Bridget Jones’s mum had it right all along: “everything in miniature!
Hattie was the master behind these particular desserts, but essentially: mash up some meringue with some whipped double cream cream, and mix some raspberries up in there. Serve.