ONCE UPON A TIME - IN THE KINGDOM OF BURPENGARIA, FAR FAR AWAY... (Well, it's near Liechtenstein actually - between there and Austria. In a hidden valley in the Alps... and thereby hangs a tale!)

Terse Verse and Teatime Treats

A Unique Combination Literary Competition and Cookbook!


The Queen’s Competition Rules

Rule 1: Your entries should reflect the Queen’s interests.

The Queen’s Interests

Food, Vengeance, Food, Nature (Meat and Veg), Food, Theatre, Food, Prose, Food, Poetry, Food, Art, Food, Food, Food...

Rule 2: Your entries should reflect the Queen’s interests.


Cook up a Clerihew

Named after Edmund Clerihew Bentley (1875–1956) an English civil servant who whiled away the time by writing the classic detective novel Trent's Last Case (1913)and making up silly verse about his colleagues. TheClerihew is a short, pithy, four-line jingle, rhymed as two couplets, which takes the Mickey out of a prominent person who is usually (but not always) mentioned in the first line.


John Howard’s eyes

May well appear wise,

But he gets into rows

Because of his brows.


We see that Kim Beazley

Eats food cooked too greasily

And we all know that

Turns straight into fat.

(Now it’s your turn…)


The Queen’s Cookies

Wholemeal Banana Fingers

1½ cups wholemeal S.R. flour, 1 cup wheatgerm or bran, ½ cup raw sugar, pinch of salt, 250 g dates, chopped, 125 g butter or margarine, ¼ cup milk, 2 eggs, 3 ripe bananas, mashed


First take your bananas and mash them well. Find you a bowl and in it mix the flour, wheat germ, sugar, salt, and chopped dates. Boil the milk, and to it add the butter, stirring gently until it melts. Beat you the eggs, and add the milk and melted butter mixture to them.

Pour this mixture onto the dry ingredients, mix well, and add the mashed bananas. Spoon you the mixture into a well greased slab tin and bake in a moderately hot oven for 25–30 minutes. Cut into fingers (not your own). Makes approximately 24 slices for the favoured at court.


Ladle a Limerick

Limericks are often blurted out by bawdy persons at office Christmas parties. There are five lines to a Limerick, in which the first and second lines rhyme with the fifth, whilst the shorter third and fourth lines rhyme with each other.


There once was a magical dragon

Who guzzled red wine by the flagon.

When his breath caught on fire

Consequences were dire.

He tried hard but fell off the wagon.


From a garden a bright painted gnome

Disappeared from his usual home.

A photo was sent

With a note eloquent

'Come and join me––I'm living in Rome!'


An otherwise beautiful fairy

Had legs which were bristly and hairy

She flirted with waxing;

The pain proved too taxing.

To try it again she was wary.

(Now it’s your turn…)


Master of the Cellar's Brandy Special

Fruity Soufflé Flambé

45 g butter, 30 g plain flour, 1 cup milk, 2 tablespoons sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla essence, 3 eggs separated, 1 cup chopped candied fruits, brandy


Melt the butter in a pan, add the flour, and cook for 2 minutes over a most gentle heat.  Remove such mixture from the heat and gradually add to this the milk. Return to the heat and stir constantly until it boils. Remove from the heat yet again and beat in the sugar, essence of vanilla and egg-yolks, one at a time. Fold in the chopped fruits. Beat the egg whites until stiff, and fold into the mixture. 

Pour into a prepared soufflé dish and bake in a moderate oven for 45 minutes. Remove from the oven. Pierce the top with a fork and sprinkle with brandy. Light a large spoonful (a very large spoonful) of brandy and pour it over the soufflé before serving.  ...Aaah 'tis bliss!


© L.J. May