Every state visit, by definition, must include a state dinner.
So, last night, I attempted to make plaice, sauteed potatoes and vegetables for my mother.
And I burnt everything.
OK, so maybe I'm exaggerating ever-so-slightly; I didn't burn the water I cooked the vegetables in, but the vegetables were certainly over-cooked.
Meanwhile, I left the potatoes for too long whilst having a chat in the living room, leaving them brown on one side and white on the other by the time I returned .
And I incinerated the lime zest/juice in olive oil and butter marinade-type arrangement.
But there were two particularly unexpected casualties in the carnage.
First, whilst "warming" the plates, I inadvertently let one fall on to the naked flames in the oven for several minutes, effectively rendering the plate unusable.
And, get this.
I really don't know how this happened, but some way, somehow...I managed to knock the digital kitchen timer thingy land on to a fully lit ring on the cooker. Again, it took me a while to notice.
By the time I did, the timer had melted.
I don't plan to do any cooking tonight.