Cold Rose-Hip Soup, it should be bottled and dispensed from a chemist, a pharmacy, drug store, but eaten to be enjoyed, surely not?
Whilst being a self-confessed meat and three veggie man myself, I am always happy to try something new, after all I love my food, but for me this was pushing the boundaries and I’m no wall-flower when it calls for pushing boundaries…
I have a wonderful mother-in-law, Clare, with whom I enjoy a very good relationship, she tells me what she thinks, pulls me into line if I need it, but loves me to bits; she’s only human after all, I guess!
Yes, I lucked out, a beautiful partner and wife, Janet, and a great mother-in-law. Many would call that Nirvana!
But the relationship was put to the test when we were called upon to try out a new culinary offering from Clare. You see as part of a group that Clare, and her husband, Archie, belong to, The Beef, Steak, and Burgundy Club, it was her turn to produce a menu for an upcoming dinner.
Now family dinners around the Fawthrop table are always enjoyable affairs, plenty of fun and laughter, the usual offering of early childhood stories of Archie’s upbringing in Colonial India, and of Clare’s on the family’s sheep station in far Western Queensland; Outback Australia.
And Clare is a wonderful cook, very home-style just how I like it. So it was with great trepidation that I approached the first course, a rather large bowl of cold rose-hip soup.
It’s okay if you’re feeling a little squeamish. I was at the mere thought of it.
Now being the only son-in-law present it somehow fell to me to be the taster and by the look on the faces of all those present they appeared more than happy with this arrangement.
I faced the bowl off, like a man condemned, and raised the spoon, feebly, to my lips, like it would be the last thing I would ever do…
Fair dinkum, this was the worst thing I had ever tasted in my life.
Well, there were a couple of doses of castor oil in my younger days, and by now I’m thinking this could be bottled as an alternative!
Clare, anxiously awaiting endorsement of the wonderful soup she toiled over, looked my way, expectantly.
If we were not on such great terms I could be forgiven for thinking this soup would be better named mother-in-law’s revenge.
I weighed up my options…
I could do the right thing and tell her it was fantastic, but crikey, then I would have to finish this bowl, plus another helping for sure.
I was still gagging on the first spoonful…
Or I could tell her the truth, usually a good policy, as I tell our son TomO, unless a little white lie is called for!
Self-preservation is a wonderful instinct that we mere humans are well adapted to…
“Clare, this soup is bloody terrible”
There was a pregnant pause around the table, followed by the sound of half-a-dozen spoons being quickly placed back in their bowls, soup untouched!
The look on everyone’s faces confirmed the verdict, I was safe – phew!