Simple Stuff

NB: These instructions are designed for those of us who are right-handed or ambidextrous. If you are left-handed, where I have written 'left', you will need to read 'right'. From this point on, otherwise you'll get into another one of those 'I always lie' conundrum thingies.

These instructions were written in 2001, so some techniques may be outdated, but they are tried and tested.


This is a fairly simple recipe for toast.

Loaf of sliced bread (If you must, Hovis), or slice of bread stolen from someone else (Recommended)
  1. Sit loaf on table with splayed end at top
  2. Remove the selotape tie between the splayed bit and the rectangular bit
  3. Open up splayed end
  4. Put your hand in
  5. Remove first piece of bread
  6. This is called the 'crust'; some people do not like the 'crust', so you may want to dispose of this; if so, perform step 5, then jump to 7
  7. Put bread in one of the gaps in the toaster
  8. Ensure the toaster is plugged in
  9. Ensure the power supply is in the 'on' position
  10. Locate the toaster's 'cook' button (usually a lever at the side)
  11. Turn the toaster 'on'
  12. That's not the toaster.
  13. Turn the dishwasher 'off' and remove toast
  14. Locate toaster, perform steps 7 thru 11 and jump to 15
  15. Wait
  16. The toast should pop up. Note, if you see black vapour eminating from the toaster, your toast has finished cooking early, and you should turn the toaster 'off'
  17. If it is your loaf, reapply the selotape to the loaf container in approximately the same position as you removed it. If it is someone else's, reapply the selotape to the loaf container in exactly the same position as you removed it.

Do this a couple of times. Now that you've mastered toast, we can move on to...

Toast and Butter

This is a little more complicated, but well worth it.

Loaf of sliced bread (If you must, Hovis), or slice of bread stolen from someone else (Recommended)
Tub of butter (Recommended), or pack of butter
  1. Make toast as in recipe 'Toast'
  2. Remove butter from fridge. I only ever buy butter in tubs; if yours is a pack, then I'm afraid you're on your own from here to step 7.
  3. Remove lid from tub of butter
  4. Ensure the bottom of the tub is on the table.
  5. Hold tub of butter in left hand by the sides.
  6. Remove the foil cover (unless you have done this before)
  7. Pick up knife
  8. Scrape knife along the top of the butter, from right to left, at an angle of approximately 70 degrees to the butter, with the top of the knife in front of the bottom.
  9. Let go of tub of butter with left hand
  10. Hold toast at the edges with left hand
  11. Scrape knife along a non-butter-covered area of the toast, with the 'blade' of the knife flat against the toast
  12. Scrap knife around the toast until the butter has been spread thinly and evenly over as much of the toast as possible
  13. Repeat steps 5 thru 12 until the toast is covered in a thin layer of butter all over, then jump to 14
  14. Put lid back on butter (again, if you're using a pack, you're on your own)
  15. Put butter back in fridge

Although this requires a significant amount of extra effort, I am confident you will find the rewards are worth it.

Baked Beans

And here's the one you've all been waiting for... it's a bit more verbose than the others, but that's because it's a little more tricky.

Tin of baked beans
  1. Put tin of baked beans in the upright position on a hard surface, such as a table or the floor, so that one of the flat ends is on the table, the other flat end is facing upwards, and the writing is in the correct orientation, eg it reads from left to right. Unless it is a chinese tin of baked beans, in which case it should read from top to bottom.
  2. Hold tin gently in either hand by the rim at the top. This is, of course, assuming that you have a 'ring pull' tin; if yours does not have a ring pull (check both ends first), then I believe you will need a 'tin opener', and I'm afraid you're on your own.
  3. By making a slow and steady twisting movement with the hand holding the tin, rotate the tin so that the 'ring pull' is at its farthest point from you. NB: If your hand refuses to twist any more and the ring pull is not in the correct position, let go of the tin and twist your hand in the opposite direction, and repeat this step.
  4. Hold tin of baked beans firmly in left hand by the sides, and press it down onto the hard surface.
  5. Gently prise the ring away from the top of the tin enough to fit your index (first) finger on your right hand into and under the ring, so you are holding it in your finger.
  6. Now, maintaining the downwards force on the hard surface with the tin in your left hand, pull towards you hard. The lid should pull off; if it doesnt, once again, you will need to find a tin opener and instructions for aforementioned device.
  7. Let go of ring. If it does not drop off your finger, shake your hand randomly until it does.
  8. Apologise profusely to shop-keeper / police, take the tin to a checkout, pay, and spill as little of the bean sauce as possible on the way home.
  9. Place tin in the upright position (see description in step 1 for more details) on the table.
  10. Pick up tin with left hand
  11. Position tin over a plate
  12. Tilt hand to invert the position of the tin to approximately 45 degrees, so that the baked beans start to fall onto the plate
  13. Pick up spoon with right hand, so that the bowl of the spoon is pointing to your left
  14. Move the spoon into the tin, and move it around the tin in an attempt to get all of the beans out of it. Hint: If they refuse to leave the tin, try rotating the bowl of the spoon so the other edge comes into contact with the beans

And you now have a tasty meal for one or more, depending on the size of tin you chose. I must admit that I was looking forward to this part of the guide with a significant amount of apprehension, but it proved a lot easier than I had anticipated, and I am sure that you will enjoy preparing baked beans as much as you will eating them!

I've heard that baked beans can also be eaten hot. Watch this space.

Tasty Pasta Meal

It's taken a while, but after much pain, experimentation, indigestion and deliberation, it's finally here, my most complicated recipe so far. Enjoy.

Findus Macaroni Cheese
Squeezy bottle of Tomato Ketchup
Sharp Stabby Knife
  1. Tear open the cardboard box.
  2. Remove the frozen tasty pasta meal. Do not eat it now. It does bad things to your bowels. Trust me.
  3. Locate the clear film which is over the TOP of the tasty pasta meal. That is the clear stuff.
  4. Pick up your Sharp Stabby Knife with your right hand, holding it in your closed fist, so that your thumb is on top of your hand, the back of your hand faces away to your right, and the blade of the knife points downwards. This will give you optimal power with the knife.
  5. With your left hand, hold the package by the white packaging stuff at the sides, while the bottom of the package rests on the table.
  6. Raise your right arm above your head, and swing it down onto the clear film located in step 3, taking care to miss your head and your left hand on the way down.
  7. Cackle manically.
  8. Repeat the previous two steps until the clear thing is dead. For added effectiveness, start slowly and increase the frequency of the repetitions. Stop before little bits of it fall off and into the microwave meal, because they'll stay there, you wont see them (because they are what we in the trade call 'transparent') and you'll accidentally eat them. So don't do that.
  9. Place the stabbed frozen tasty pasta meal in the microwave. Apparently you should remove the knife, but if some of it broke off when you were stabbing it, don't worry too much, it'll make your microwave do pretty blue sparks. Oh, and make sure you get the clear stabbed film on the TOP.
  10. Piece the cardboard box back together
  11. Locate cooking timing instructions (they appear to vary from box to box).
  12. Program the microwave with the amount of time specified on the box.
  13. Shut the door of the microwave.
  14. Press the 'GO' button.
  15. Wait for the microwave to stop.
  16. Open the door of the microwave.
  17. DO NOT EAT IT NOW! It does bad things to your mouth.
  18. Leave for the amount of time specified on the box which you pieced back together earlier.
  19. DO NOT EAT IT NOW! It does bad things to your bowels.
  20. Peel away the film. You could now eat it, but lets go pro level.
  21. Open the lid of the ketchup bottle.
  22. Turn the bottle upside down in a way so that you are holding it with two hands, thumbs on one side, other fingers on the other. Take care to make sure that it is pointing at the heated stabbed frozen tasty pasta meal and not at the floor or flat mate.
  23. Squeeze the bottle as hard as you can. Really give it all you've got, and when you think you're done, squeeze some more.
  24. Let go of the bottle on a nearby surface or flat mate.

Now you have a tasty pasta meal for one, and I think you will agree that it is definitely worth the effort.

Note: This meal should be eaten with a fork.