My hatred of sultanas began at an early age. My dear Grandmother who has almost lived in three centuries makes what she calls a curry by adding sultans and apples, yes that's right sultanas AND apples to her beef casarole.
Yesterday i had the pleasure of attending a 90th birthday party of an old next-door neighbour.Old in that he's 90 and that he was my neighbour 21 and a half years ago. Said neighbour now lives in the hell that is Dover. Not even Dover in fact, something worse - a willage near Dover.Contrary to my estimations i was not the youngest person there. I was however the only person there not in floral frocks, who had arranged the floral table display and done the floral icing on the cake and i was definately the only Blek.
It appeared nobody wanted me and my long-suffering mother sitting on their table nor to talk to us so we quickly found ourselves in isolation in the corner of the room between the members of the WI and the macrame group. Finally it was time to eat. We had been travling for hours in fact days to get there and the thought of a meal, or at least that British favourite -"nibbles" at the end of it all was the only think keeping us going. The jury's still out as to whether i am always this stupid or whether i was having a particularly vacant day. what was i thinking? there would be no wali na mchuzi, not even any tambi, this was whayt do and the food was going to be very whayt.
As we neared the table i saw handy-yet-whayt labels explaining what everything was. This were not really needed anyway because it was self-explanitary. Eat me and you will die. Coronation chicken -didn't that happen about 55 years ago?, salmon mousse, eggs with maiyonaise -eggs and mayonise TOGHETHER, quiche lorraine, ham and mushroom quiche, gammon, haddock, past salad with spring onion sauce, potatoe salad, sausage rolls, scotch eggs, oh and the list goes on. I quickly scanned the giant table for anything that looked unoffensive and that's spoon hadn't already known (in the biblical sense)any meet or fish. Almost impossible but tucked away in the corner my eyes spotted the most unlikely thing even. Tabbouleh. No it couldn't be i though. couldn't possibily be. well it was the safest looking thing by far so i made a beeline for it. i managed to make it back to my table with a tiny spoon of the offending substance and a great big hunk of bread. The Shakleswell tabbouleh turned out to be made with Quinoa rather than bulgar wheat -even more surprising and wasn't that bad all things considered BUT, you've guessed it. It had sultanas in it. Why? why? it just makes no sense to me whatsoever. There was no way i was going to eat them but likewise i coulnd't really leave 60 sultanas on my plate, i had already drawn enough attention to myself as it was by just turning up, what to do? i looked around desperately, not even any ashtrays or bins in sight. i looked to my right. it was my only option. i stealthly began depositing spoonfuls of the sultanas onto the plate of the toad of toadhall-esque woman sitting next to me who was so busy telling us about her new Stannah stair lift that she didn't notice. phew. i made it out alive and live to tell the tail. until we meet again sultana.