Susan Morrison: It tikkas all sorts

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THROUGHOUT my life I have always abided by a few simple rules when it comes to food. Broadly speaking, rule one says: best if someone else cooks. Rule two says: the toaster is your friend and rule three says: “delicious hot or cold” is not a recipe.

There are another two rules which state, baldly, do not eat food that hurts. That’s a good, straightforward rule that covers unhelpful culinary behaviour such as eating glass, chewing batteries or ingesting over-spicy curry.

The next rule is eating is not a contest. Eating is a pleasure, not a sport, and who in their right mind would compete to eat painful food such as belly-melting, bahookie-burning curry?

The idea of competitively eating something that’s going to Dynarod your innards after napalming your mouth is as pointless as competitively dozing in front of the telly (although there some couples who go for that record most Saturday nights).

At Kismot restaurant, they held a charity curry night where, according to the owner, the hottest curry in Britain would be competitively ingested. What he didn’t say was that the winner’s prize was a free trip in an ambulance.

Half of the competitors in the Who’s The Bammer Who Ordered This? contest dropped out when they saw other competitors “writhing on the floor and vomiting”. The owner of Kismot seems miffed by this lack of dedication to the cause, but I’ve always found it another rule of food that you really shouldn’t be eating in a restaurant where the staff have to pick their way over punters writhing on the floor. The vomiting thing is a bit off-putting as well. It’s a bit like Come Dine with Me, the Borgias episode.

Seriously, if you want to raise money for charity, can I suggest running round Arthur’s Seat, knitting tea cosies or baking scones for the charity of your choice?

Or, alternatively, competitively Doing Nothing Stupid, which might just be a real challenge for some folks.

Oh, and good people of Edinburgh, I suggest we drive that wee bit quicker past Seafield for a day or two . . .