John Pilgrim: Just how hard can a bowl of soup be?

I AM writing this with the sound turned down on the TV which isn’t the right way to watch ‘Come Dine With Me’ because it’s what the contestants say to each other that is the funniest part of the whole thing.

In fact I’m really rather glad that there wasn’t anyone else present when I tasted my latest homemade meal because to say that it was a disaster is understating the event.

Although I say so myself (which is pretty easy when you live with a spaniel for a companion), some of my offerings have turned out reasonably acceptable in the past but this time I really do not know what happened.

Homemade winter root vegetable soup – just how difficult can that be ladies?

Could it be that I don’t really like parsnip, swede, turnips etc?

My good friend Ken Brown used to say that the only effect vegetables of that kind can cause is odours that are usually created by a railway horse!

Maybe I had Ken’s wise words in my mind while I chopped away at the ingredients, added all the bits and pieces that the recipe (yes, there was a recipe) required and set to with the electric mixer.

From the moment the soup began to simmer in the saucepan I knew that something was wrong.

The smell that permeated throughout the house was obnoxious or to say the least rank but I persevered.

Just as I was about to place some of my home brew into a bowl my neighbour rang the door bell.

I went to the door pausing briefly to apply a quick squirt of air freshener to find that this was a social call to find out how I was.

Tony sat down and I offered coffee which was accepted. On my way to the kitchen I mentioned casually that Gemma was suffering a bout of wind which was a pretty cheap shot but one that we have all used at one time or another I’m sure.

Tony didn’t stay for long and he didn’t pet the dog as he usually does, instead he gave the poor mutt a bit of a ‘look’.

The dog went quietly to her basket where she sat looking accusingly at me. I just had to say sorry but it fell on deaf ears and I was in the bad books until her next walk.

Sufficient to say that Gemma refused the soup as well which was really cruel of her and to add insult to injury the very moment that the ‘Come Dine With Me’ music starts she goes to her basket for a nap.