At 6am the candidates were told to convene at Tate Britain. “This task is all about premium puddings. High end dining aimed at the mass market. You are going to come up with a range of desserts, and pitch them to a team of experts.” The temptation to interrupt Sirsugaralanlord with a cheerful “You sure about this, Al? Too many cooks might spoil the puddings, eh? Eh? Geddit?” was resisted by all them. No sense of humour, this lot.
Finally, the girls got to be project managers. Roisin was lumbered with Daniel, to Katie’s visible relief. Roisin wanted to create a range of tea-flavoured puddings. Sanjay chose to freestyle brand names. “Sweet Pleasure?” he suggested, obviously having misheard Sugarlordalansir – I hope – and believing the task was to create a sex aid.
Anyway, Roisin plumped for three varieties of cheesecake called Teapot (Earl Grey and lemon, Oolong and vanilla and another tea with something else, I forget what). The branding was the brainchild of Solomon, and was first class. Katie chose to create a range of trifles called A Trifle Different (a name Sanjay was so proud of he practically high-fived himself) and the branding was rubbish. Katie then decided to experiment with some saffron. Unfamiliar with both its flavour and cost, she lobbed about a trillion quid’s worth into the pan, the contents of which immediately turned an evil vomit yellow.
Both teams pronounced their puddings and indeed themselves to be truly wonderful. Off they went to pitch to the supermarkets, with mixed results. On swallowing a mouthful of Katie’s black cherry and saffron trifle, the first set of tasters heroically managed not to barf. “The saffron is overpowering,” said one, with a face like an inside out button mushroom. “And it adds nothing to the taste.” No sh*t.
At the next pitch, they fared no better. The tasters’ sophisticated palates picked up immediately that there was way, way, WAY too much saffron. Meanwhile, Roisin’s cheesecake was going down a storm. “I like that it’s called The Tea Pot,” said the chief taster. “It’s a play on tea pot,” explained Roisin helpfully.
Roisin’s team won and were rewarded with the glittering bauble that is a trip on the Thames (jeez, Lordsiralansugar, open that wallet for once, eh?) and back in the boardroom Katie, Mark and Sanjay sat glumly contemplating their failed trifles. They all concentrated on how much they wanted to go into business with Teeny Al. Katie wanted to launch a healthy eating restaurant in Sunderland. “The town reely needs ett,” she pleaded. I’ve been to Sunderland. She’s not wrong. Sanjay, if I heard it aright, wanted to launch an internet network for people who go to the gym. Yawn. Mark muttered something about advertising. Katie got the push. In the Taxi of Doom, she shared her pride in her progress. “Av learned skillz aa didn’t even know that aa had.” But Katie, you wouldn’t know that you had them, because you didn’t have them, because you learned them. See? Oh please yourself.
Sanjay then found himself in the Taxi of Doom Mark II. “Thank you for the opportunity.” There was a moment when it looked like Alanlordsugarsir was about to see if he could get three taxis for the price of two, but at the last minute Mark was reprieved.
It’s looking more and more likely that the office sweepstake money is mine. I’ve just jinxed Solomon now, haven’t I?