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Sunday, 30 January 2011

The marzipan/old lady slippers correlation effect, and why licking plasterboard and liking David Suchet are inextricably intertwined

Marzipan.  Delicious yellow cake covering or food of the Devil?  Discuss.

 Seriously.  If you can look at this picture without flinching, you're over eighteen.

There is a point to this, just hold on, I'll get there in a minute.

I always hated marzipan.  Many a fruitcake has been picked to shreds by yours truly in her formative years, carefully dissecting the icing layer to remove any stray molecules of almondy stuff.  In fact it's a wonder I didn't go into forensic medicine, such was my attention to detail.  And then, suddenly one day, (probably in the middle of an unsuspected Battenburg, slipped onto my plate by a 'friend' whilst I was busy holding forth on some subject dear to my heart), I realised that it wasn't so bad after all.  All right, a bit unnaturally yellow, but so is Dale Winton.  Although I suppose he's more orangey, but in a bad light he's a dead ringer for a sponge finger.  Anyway.  I was a marzipanular convert.

This means that I now eat Christmas cake with all the fervour of a cult-junkie instead of nibbling round the icing like an explosives expert entering a mine field.  All right, this has repercussions for the size of my bottom, but it also made me start thinking (well, I had to, can't leave the house any more.  It's only a matter of days before I have to start cleaning myself with a rag on a stick - damn you, marzipan!).  Remember all those things you hated when you were a child?  And I'm talking about food items here, not other things like whiskery aunts, next-door's dog, Mrs Adams from Class One and those faceless zombie things your friend showed you a picture of and now teases you because you refuse to go to upstairs alone unless all the lights are on and the downstairs door is kept open.

Things like dark chocolate.  Marmite.  Old-man's leg cheese (that's the cheese with those blue veins in, not cheese that smells like an old man's leg, because that would suppose knowledge that you would never admit to having).  How many of these things have you come around to liking, now that you have a full set of adult teeth and your own Council Tax bill?  Seriously, what happens to the taste buds as we get older?  Am I going to find that, in say ten years time, I enjoy the taste of wet plasterboard?  And how many of my other tastes have changed beyond recognition?  Sadly, I no longer find Adam Ant the pinacle of male desirability and I find myself dreading the inevitable slide towards lusting after such well-known objects of desire as David Suchet and nice upright chairs.

Likewise, I am teetering on the borderline between quietly dribbling over these:

and thinking that maybe I'd be better off in these:

So.  Next time you find yourself hesitating between a packet of Haribo and a tube of Werthers Originals, just remember, it's only a short hop from Old Man Sweets to listening to Charles Aznevour and wondering whatever happened to horse-drawn omnibuses.

And keep your hands off the marzipan.


Debs Riccio said...

So funny, Jane! You had me at Marzipan. Thankfully this is NOT a taste I've lost the yearning for, although I'm not a fan of icing, so I strip the white stuff off to leave the yellow goo (Dale Winton, lol!). May's a year I've bought a wodge of Marzipan from Sainsburys on the pretext that it will be covering the Christmas cake that never gets beyond the recipe book, and by Easter it's pretty much scoffed slice-by-slice. And don't Almonds count as one of our five-a-day?

Jane Lovering said...

Almonds only count if they're not diluted by 90% sugar, sadly. But I think here is where I confess that I too have bought a roll allegedly to cover a cake... It's their own fault, they shouldn't make it taste so nice!
PS, bring a crowbar, I need to get to the shops...

Claire King said...

Nothing wrong with Charles Aznavour thank you very much. I have quite the crush on him (in an 'I wish he were my uncle' sort of way).
If you ever have the time, try making your own marzipan. It's very quick & easy and *much* nicer than shop bought.
How do you feel about oysters?

Jane Lovering said...

Claire, isn't Charles Aznavour about 90? Not that there's anything wrong with the ..ahem..older gentleman, but..well.. And I used to make my own marzipan occasionally, hence having a bum the size of Blackpool. It was like the time I made my own ice-cream.. a moment of blackness and when I came round all the food was gone. It remains a mystery to this day. Oysters? I'm allergic, sadly.

Claire King said...

He is yes. But I'd have him round for tea and fruitcake in a flash. Just hope he doesn't have the cheesy legs, that's all.