That entire title is a lie. This started as a Mississippi mud pie, but due to circumstances and the contents of my kitchen it was forced to morph into a tart (it’s meringue over a chocolate pie with a dark biscuit shell. I absolutely promise you it isn’t burnt: it really is meant to look like that). And the face isn’t even based on an image of Tiglath Pileser (of any numeral): it’s from one of the Ashurnasirpal ones.
Somehow the commanding, powerful presence of the Neo-Assyrian kings doesn’t quite come through in meringue. My tart-king looks wet and annoying: you don’t get the feeling he’d ravage your city, but he might put on a slightly whiney voice and ask to borrow it.
Perhaps he could be Esarhaddon (the readership of this blog has expanded somewhat of late, so for the non-Assyriologists: Esarhaddon was a permanently sickly Neo-Assyrian king who spent a lot of his time moping in his room).* On the other hand, the main thing that really sticks with me about Esarhaddon is that he had a horrible skin rash all over his body, and that’s not particularly appetising. Let’s say it’s Ashur-etil-ilani (one of the last kings of the Neo-Assyrian empire, we don’t know anything about him except that he only managed to hold onto the throne for three years, but if he’d been made from meringue he’d definitely have looked exactly like this).
The breakfast of champions. I mean the afternoon tea of champions. I definitely don’t schedule these blog posts to be published long after I’ve written them. There’s no way I took this photo first thing in the morning even though I’m planning to post in the afternoon. And I’m certainly not going to eat a slice of chocolate tart with meringue and added cream for breakfast. I wouldn’t dream of it.
*I should probably be nicer to Esarhaddon. He clearly had a pretty awful time of it, and in order to hide his hideous, chronic illnesses he insisted that everyone who came before him should be veiled and kneeling, which sounds so much like the premise of a Borges story that you have to be on his side.