The Unknown Soldier

Unknown Soldier


Serves 2
  • 50mls vodka
  • 50mls Cointreau
  • 2 small white sugar lump
  • 2 forks
  • 2 x 50mls liqueur glasses
  • Hot water
  • 1 match


  1. First warm the glasses with hot water, then remove the water and pour half of the Cointreau into each glass first, followed by half of the vodka. 
  2. Dim the room lights and silence any guests. 
  3. Light the drink with a match and have ready the lump of sugar balanced on the tines of the fork.
  4. Suspend the fork over the flame and allow the sugar lump to melt and drip into the drink below. Now, this is the really special moment. As the melting sugar hits the liquid, it causes 'small explosions...' which sound ' a distant rifle.' And it is true, they absolutely do! Also, once the flame has been extinguished, the 'Little "bullets" of caramelised sugar...' have further turned the drink a '...deep caramel colour...' and with ' aroma of burnt orange.' It is suggested that the drink is consumed '...while it is still hot!' Health and Safety, nearly forty years on, may well not agree with Mr. Kerr.


Candied orange peel

Makes about 50-60 orange strips

3 large best quality oranges

250g golden caster sugar


  1. Cut off each end of the oranges to reveal the flesh.
  2. Cut each orange in half lengthways, and then each half into thirds, also lengthways to give 6 segments.
  3. Using a small, sharp serrated knife, cut two thirds of the flesh from each segment with respect to the shape of it; in other words, curve the knife as you cut, while also leaving one third of the orange's flesh attached to the peel.
  4. Put the pure flesh segments into a plastic box, cover and keep in the fridge to eat for breakfast the next day.
  5. Now, cut each segment into four equal strips - once again, lengthways - and put into a stainless steel pan. Cover with cold water and bring up to a simmer. Cook for 5 minutes, then drain in a colander.
  6. Return to the pan, cover again with cold water and repeat the previous process. Do this twice more. Once all of this has been done fourtimes [this repetition is absolutely necessary, to rid all bitter taste from the orange's pith], return to the pan and add 150g of the given sugar and gently stir together; do not add any water.
  7. Over a low heat, allow the sugar to melt amongst the orange strips and then very, very slowly allow to bubble away for about an hour, partially covered, gently stirring occasionally.
  8. Finally, now that the strips are 'candied', remove from the syrup with a slotted spoon and lay onto a cake rack [slide a tray underneath to catch drips] to cool.
  9. Fill a shallow tray with the remaining 100g sugar, tip in the orange strips and roll in the sugar until all are well coated; if you need to add more sugar to make sure of this, feel free. Best served cold from the fridge when you wish to eat them.