Sunday lunch in Yorkshire a couple of months ago: a warm inn on a dreich day as I tuck into a hot plate filled with slices of roast beef, vegetable and pudding – the identifier Yorkshire being unnecessary in this plain speaking Shire.
“Yorkshire puddin’? It’s jus’ puddin’ round these parts! There ain’ no other kind o’puddin’!”
And, for pudding itself (the sweet kind, not the suet kind, thus proving there is more than one type of pudding) I choose a selection of cheeses, because I am a triathlete and trying to be good.
(Also all the puddings had nuts and I can’t eat nuts because of a mild allergy, but I told myself I was being strong for races).
“Do you have any biscuits to go with the cheese?” I ask, not unreasonably
“Of course”, says the waiter, and then, unexpectedly, he pulls out a large flat drawer from a cabinet against the wall to my left, and places it with a flourish in the centre of the table; not batting an eyelid or pan lid at this impromptu act of dismantling dining room furniture.
“Enjoy”, says the waiter, leaving the large drawer on the table; which I now see is filled with open packets of water biscuits, oatcakes and crumbly digestives.
I can’t help but wait until the waiter’s back is turned before I peek into more drawers – just to check if they contain a similar surprise hoard of savoury snacks. I want to find a pork chop in a folio desk; a cabinet stuffed with nothing but carrots; or condiments in the cupboard, saucy and secret. But, sadly, they are empty.
I wonder if this is what Ann Summers means by ‘edible drawers’ but I don’t want to go into one of her shops to find out.
But why are all the biscuits contained in this drawer? And why bring the drawer out and not just the biscuits?
Perhaps I was witnessing the act of a snack-aholic. Hiding biscuits away in unusual locations so that no one knows exactly how bad their snacking has become. A real crack(er) addict.
Or perhaps the drawer was just a marketing gimmick, a unique way of making you remember the meal long after the taste has long been forgotten.
Remember that restaurant in Yorkshire, you’ll say.
The one with a drawer filled full of biscuits!
Oh, that one! How delightful and quaint! A meal that was – *groan* – truly top drawer!
Anyways, I tell this story for one reason only – watch out for savoury snacks, even when you’re trying to be good, always order a proper pudding!