Apple Crumble

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Memoir  |  House: Booksie Classic
A very short story about a funny incident

Submitted: October 14, 2007

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Submitted: October 14, 2007

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It had been a long day with lots of sun and open air activities, building strong appetites in the children.  There had been rock climbing, sailing, exploring and other outdoor activities.  Now was the time to eat and relax before getting into bed for the mandatory sleep before the next school camp day.

The parents team was in the kitchen clearing away the cooking utensils and getting ready to serve dessert.  The children were in the adjacent large eating hall and were very quiet as they tucked into their dinner.  Everything seemed to be going well when suddenly the cook let out a loud wail.  We all looked around to see her leaning over a huge pan of apple crumble and poking at it with a large spoon.

“Oh no!,  Its burnt,  Now there wont be enough apple crumble for everyone”.  The surface of the crumble was dark brown all over and particularly black in one corner.  The cook looked distraught.  “There are no more apples or crumbles and anyway we couldn’t cook it in time”.The other huge pan of crumble looked nice and golden brown.

I looked over at the pan where the cook was poking, and although it was burnt, it didn’t seem to be too bad.  I had an idea.  I said to the cook,  “Just take a fork and brush the black evenly over the whole pan of crumble so that it all looks uniform and leave the rest to me.  I think we can save this”.  The cook looked a little reluctant and started to protest.  I interrupted and said “Just trust me with this and whatever you do, don’t say a word to anyone especially the children”.Again the cook went to protest and I asked,  “What have you got to loose?”  The cook relaxed a little and said “OK” and started spreading out the burnt crumble on the top of the dessert.

I went out into the big eating hall and looked at all the children.There were about sixty of them finishing their first course and some were starting to gather together their dessert bowls and spoons ready for their dessert.I called out loudly,  “I have some important information for you about dessert”.  The room quietened down and all the children looked in my direction to see what was coming next.I said,  “When you come up to the serving area for dessert, there are two different types of apple crumble.  There is Cinnamon Crumble and there is Plain Crumble.  Please make sure you tell the cook which of these you would like”.I glanced at the cook who was peering though the server area opening and winked at her.  She had obviously heard the announcement and had a nervous look on her face.

As I turned to head back to the kitchen the clamour of children’s voices rose and I could hear chairs moving as many children starting to collect their plates and head for the server.  They lined up for dessert in a ragged line and started to be served.  I went over to the serving area to listen to what was happening.  “Cinnamon please”.  “Cinnamon Please”,  “Cinnamon please”,  “Plain please”, Cinnamon Please”.  It was clear that cinnamon was going to be a hit tonight.

The cook was busy putting a large scoop of apple crumble into each bowl and as she looked up, she caught my eye.  “I don’t feel right doing this” she said to me.  I shot her a serious look and said “Don’t say a word”.As the last of the children filed past I saw that all the burnt crumble was gone and only the pan of plain crumble had any left.

There was only a short moment to relax before the first children were back for repeat servings.  “Cinnamon please” they echoed.  But it was all gone and when they discovered this, they complained about how they only liked cinnamon.But dessert is desert and the days activities had made them hungry, so they grumbled but eventually ate up all the remaining plain crumble.

No one went hungry that night and the cook chucked to her self as she washed the big apple crumble pans.  “I wouldn’t have believed you could pull that off, if I hadn’t been here to see it”.For the remaining days of the school camp, whenever I caught the cook’s eye, she would smile and we would both chuckle.


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