Watching telly at Christmas is fraught with peril. Tired old repeats and Christmas specials and how-to shows full of snowman inspired craft projects for the kids to make on sticky summer afternoons. I can cope with these if I have to, but I wasn’t prepared for the adverts for the Rollie.* I doubt that anyone is.
The Rollie is the latest in a long line of diabolically useless gadgets that gets flogged on the box at Christmas. Fa la la la la, la la la lah. It looks a bit like a bike rider’s water bottle. You crack an egg into the top of it, so it fills a hollow at the core of the gizmo. You insert a stick into it as well. That’s important apparently. When it’s ready you pull on the stick and a perfect pale yellow cylinder of cooked egg comes out. It is one of the creepiest looking things I’ve ever seen. Can people really want their eggs to come like that? Poached, scrambled or Rollied?
An egg is a simple and beautiful thing. Some lovely chicken worked hard to make it. We should honour that, in the way we cook and present it. This is how I show my respect.
I start with a free range egg, finest kind. I use one of those put-in-the-pot colour changing egg timers to cook it just right. My yolk is still soft and golden. I pop it onto an eggcup and crack the top, slicing it off with a knife so I can get to the googy stuff. Salt and pepper on the egg and a slice of buttered sourdough toast on the side. With a hot cup of Earl Grey, ta.
Let’s all respect our eggs and our chickens. Let us not be tempted by K-Tel style gadgetry that churns out food that looks like toilet roll cylinders. If you must watch tv in the lead up to Christmas let it be Jimmy Stewart in It’s a Wonderful Life, and make sure you mute the adverts offering any bedevilled single purpose kitchen appliance that you know will languish in the back of the hard-to-get-into-cupboard until six years later when you take it to Vinnies. Amen.
*You know to be sceptical when it’s described as a ‘vertical cooking system’. Truly. I’m not making this up.