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Recipe Number Twelve December 2003

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As Mrs R and I set off to drive to the restaurant the other morning, the sun was starting to send its warm rays over the countryside and although it was late November it seemed like spring. Thoughts of what a perfect day it would be for going fishing crept into my mind. I could just see myself sitting in my little canvas chair, rods on the rod rests and pouring myself a nice cup of coffee from my flask. Patiently waiting for the float to disappear under the water and for me to do battle with a monster from the deep.

As the car by now was heading in the direction of Heacham I resigned myself to the fact that I had better show my face at the restaurant today and fishing would have to wait until another sunny day. In fact I had just remembered that an old friend of mine was popping in to see me. He had told me a few weeks ago that in his loft at home he had come across a 1964 magazine and in it was a article about Ingoldisthorpe Manor Hotel. This was amazing, it was the year that I started at the Manor and I was looking forward to reading it.

The peace was broken as a voice said, “Don’t forget that you have to pick up the partridges from Sandringham.” Well done Mrs R. Would you believe it had of course completely slipped my mind. So within a few minutes we were driving into Sandringham heading towards the pick up point. The old King often described his beloved estate as “Dear old Sandringham.” I for one am proud that we have a Royal family and because of their Norfolk connections, at this special time of the year I feel with respect a sadness for them. It seems that it does not matter one bit, how high you are in the pecking order, little rumours that start from the bowels of the earth grow. Like a snowball that gets larger as it gathers speed going down a hill with a bit more being added as it travels along and what started out as a little bit of gossip, is now front page news.

When we had my restaurant in Kings Lynn in the early 1980’s you only had to say that you had a bad back at one end of Norfolk street and by the time the news reached the other end you were dead and buried.

How do rumours start? Well it’s true that yours truly has been seen in the city and its true that he was at the Savoy having lunch with ten other men in dark suits. Also its true he was not paying, and also later in the day he was spotted at the Dorchester drinking with a guy with spikey hair that looked like Gary Rhodes. But then what happens next came right out of the blue. I had only just arrived back in the restaurant when I had a telephone call. “Is it true?” I was asked.  “Is what true?” I replied.  Then the conversation went as follows: “Would you believe it? Rushmore’s in Heacham is going to be Gary Rhodes new restaurant in the countryside!” After I had finished picking myself back up from the floor, I asked the caller who was saying all this. “Can’t say” he replied. “My lips are sealed.” “ OK. So how much have you heard the sale price is?” “ Well it’s being bandied around, but don’t take my word for it, that it aint far short of a million pounds.” After my short reply the receiver was placed firmly down.

It made me start to think, what if it was true? There would be an influx of people wishing to buy property in a village that had a restaurant owned by Gary Rhodes. It would without a doubt push house prices up. Then there are the needs and requirements of these city come weekend county folk. Rod and Tam that already sell an excellent range of fish would also be required to hold stock piles of caviars, also foie gras; and it goes without saying plenty of hand picked wild mushrooms. There would also be a good sale of green wellies, checked shirts, walking canes and fisherman’s blue hand knitted sweaters for any enterprising person that was thinking of opening a shop and jumping on the band wagon.

Local garages would have to upgrade to be able to service the top of the range BMW and Porsches. Then there’s Mr Ward the gents hairdressers who would, I know, benefit by charging London prices and so it goes on. Within a week Burnham Market would be like a ghost town and Heacham would be the in place to be seen; and all because of Mr Rhodes restaurant. Well you will be pleased to hear it aint true. But it is pleasing to know that Gary and I have at least one thing in common, that is Rhodes and Rushmore are both spelt with an R.

I suppose I better offer a recipe for this merry time of the year, and it’s what to do with that turkey after you have served it hot on Christmas Day; had it with pickles on Boxing Day and thinking of digging a large hole in the back garden or coming up with some way of getting the folks to enjoy yet another session of turkey.

My Version of Coronation Turkey

Remove the cooked meat from the cold turkey, chop into bite size pieces and then place it into a good-sized bowl. Add into the bowl an amount of mayonnaise (this can be topped up with more if you find that the mixture is a little dry). Next de-seed a small bunch of grapes and add these to the bowl, also chop into small slices a couple of sweet apples that have been skinned. Slice a medium size onion very fine and maybe a few chopped spring onions wont go amiss. If you enjoy pineapple then add the contents of a small can that has being chopped into cubes of course you pour the juice off first.

Now sprinkle a teaspoon of mild dry curry powder into the mixture and with the aid of a large spoon mix the ingredients together; season with salt and pepper and that’s it. Dead simple and it makes the turkey taste great. We at home serve it on a bed of cold spiced rice.

It only remains for me to say Merry Christmas to you all.

Colin Rushmore

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