Well, that was really rather a satisfactory Eurovision. I actually liked Sweden quite a bit, and while I still feel that Turkey and Iceland were robbed, there was a very pleasing mix of the truly bizarre (moonwalking bagpipe players?) with the unexpectedly good, and not too many power ballads, either. And for once neither Italy or France embarrassed me (and I did approve of France’s decision to garnish their number with attractive and topless gymnasts). No costume reveals, but other than that, it was a very good effort, and definitely one of the best Eurovisions I’ve seen
I’m in the throes of a horrible lurgy, so I haven’t been feeling very inventive, culinarily (hence all the desserts with nary a savoury dish in sight. Savoury is much harder to be creative with). This meant no painstaking research of Azerbaijani cuisine with a view to feasting thematically. Instead, I made up a giant pot of vegetarian chilli, cooking the beans in my new pressure cooker (and this deserves a post of its own, because I am so very excited about being able to cook beans without soaking them first), baked a lot of potatoes, and put out salsa, guacamole, grated cheese and corn chips. Simple.
Still, a Eurovision gathering, however small, requires a suitable dessert, and I believe I may have found, if not the perfect Eurovision dessert, certainly one of the most apt. This dessert was born when I looked at Nigella’s recipe for Grasshopper Pie and thought – yes, but how can I make this *more* unnatural? (I suspect I am the only person in the world who would ask that particular question…)
For one thing, it’s quite unnaturally blue. For another, it is exceedingly alcoholic (thus obviating the need for a drinking game – you can simply take a bite of the tart any time there is a key change, or an all-white costume, or a wind machine…). For a third, it is ridiculously sweet, a bit tacky, and has absolutely no redeeming nutritional value. (I will leave the parallel to the reader). In short, it embodies the magnificent excess, silliness, sweetness, artificiality and need for alcoholic stimulation that encapsulates Eurovision. And, in case that wasn’t enough,it has a costume reveal! Not a very good one, but I can’t blame Eurovision for that.
Also, it’s really easy to make. And rather tasty, in a my God, I am eating blue curaçao mixed with marshmallows and coated with chocolate kind of way…
Oh, and one last thing. I should probably confess that I actually like Eurovision. I even watch it sober (blue curaçao tarts aside). You may all feel free to laugh at my terrible taste now. But it’s not about the singing – it’s about the outrageous performances and the sheer strange variety – you really never know what you are going to get – baking grannies, red-cordial-fueled twins, or bat-dancers forming themselves into a boat. It’s sheer delight, even when it’s horrific. How could anyone not love that?
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300 g chocolate ripple biscuits
200 g granita biscuits
75 g dark chocolate (Lindt 70% cocoa cooking chocolate is my favourite) + 125 g for topping
100 g softened butter
200 g white marshmallows!
165 ml milk
185 g blue curaçao
500 ml double cream
smarties, sprinkles, silver cachous, or any other colourful sweets to decorate the top