If you still remember how, pick up a pen, pencil or other implement and sign your name. Put it to one side and read on.
Oi, moosh! I hear you cry. Not only do you not do takeaways, you've written almost eloquently about why you don't. Well, not quite true. I have bought two carry out meals in the past twelve months, and, until yesterday, had been gifted one. And, until yesterday, my weight reducing diet was going well. So what happened? Having yet again failed to hear the door bell, I popped out to the bins and spied something in the woodshed. Nasty? Au contraire.
Clearly a mistake had been made, an aberration by an errant Deliveroo man. I then reunited myself with a modern contraption which I own. It's called a mobile phone - you may have heard of it. The two of us share space for about half an hour a day. And thus I discovered that this box of delights was truly mine. A ridiculously generous and unwarranted gift from some very dear friends, in the shape of a Wee Delivery from one of our favourite places, The Wee Restaurant in North Queensferry
With some difficulty I carried the box inside, and with even greater difficulty prised out the jam packed contents. To go with the aperitifs, some bags of the incredibly moreish 1916 crisps and some smoked almonds. I did wonder why there was a bottle of pineapple juice till I read the sachet of the Raspberry Ripple Martini, courtesy of Mix'd. Shake them together over ice, then fight with the other half as to who gets that or who goes for the Chocolate Espresso Martini in the other sachet.
If you can take your mind away from these alcoholic wonders, go back to your signature. It's familiar, yes? You may be foolish enough to think it a little prosaic. But look again. Is it legible? OK, I forgive you - you just haven't signed enough stuff over the years. But does it bear any resemblance to your handwriting? Thought not. It's characterful, it's distinctive, it's just you. So when I talk about a signature dish, that's what I mean. And when you're a chef as talented as Craig Wood, that means something very fine indeed. The Wee Restaurant has just celebrated its 15th birthday, and I think Craig's tapenade has been on the tables since day one. In theory it should be simple enough. I'm not privy to Craig's recipe, but most books list a blitz of black olives, capers and anchovies. Our jar of signature loveliness has a perfect balance of whatever. Spread on good bread, it just gets the juices going for the pleasures to come.
Roast beef, but not more than half an animal, in a foil platter not more than a metre square, atop a greengrocer's shop's worth of roasted vegetables, all the colours of the rainbow, the indigo and violet being made up of the purple potatoes. My favourite ingredient? Yes, chums who know me are thinking of the beef, probably my own signature dish when besties come to dine. But, in this case mistaken. Our benefactors have included a side dish. A minute's appreciation please for CRAIG WOOD'S DAUPHINOISE POTATOES.
How does the man do it? I mean, I make pretty damn fine Dauphinoise. I have been making them for years. Sometimes dinner guests are still singing about them for the ten paces down the path before they all fall into their taxis via the hedge. But if mine cause a little ripple, say a 2 on the Richter scale, Craig's can engender world wide tsunamis. Best of all, our benefactors knew that L can't have them because of the cream. As I polished off the last batch for breakfast (knocks cold curry into a cocked hat, let me tell you) I did my best to analyse them, then gave up. The phrase carpe diem was created for moments such as these.
To pud. Not one but two chocolate tarts, individual size if you are a very greedy individual. The chocolate neither too sweet, nor too bitter, then a little more sweetness from the pastry and a sudden counterpoint provided by the slight sharpness of the hidden cherry. Oh, and I nearly forgot the accompanying chocolate soil and crème Anglaise. The chocolate almonds to go with the coffee can wait for another day.
They will be reopening on April 27. I'll be queuing up when we're allowed. A vivid reminder of why I miss restaurants so much.
For more information about The Wee Restaurant, click here to see their website, Takeaways are still available in Fife. It is likely that the takeaway menu will be curtailed once the restaurant reopens, so check the site.