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The Adventure of the Christmas Pudding (Hercule Poirot 33.) 2 csillagozás

Agatha Christie: The Adventure of the Christmas Pudding Agatha Christie: The Adventure of the Christmas Pudding Agatha Christie: The Adventure of the Christmas Pudding Agatha Christie: The Adventure of the Christmas Pudding Agatha Christie: The Adventure of the Christmas Pudding
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Könyvtár

An English country house at Christmas? Time should be the perfect place to get away from it all – but nothing is ever simple for Hercule Poirot, as he find not one but five baffling cases to solve.

First comes a sinister warning on his pillow to avoid the plum pudding… then the discovery of a corpse in a chest… next, an overheard quarrel that leads to murder… the strange case of a dead… man's eating habits… and the puzzle of a victim who dreams of his own suicide.

Eredeti megjelenés éve: 1960


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Kívánságlistára tette 1


Népszerű idézetek

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Esmeralda

All the same old things, the Christmas tree and the stockings hung up and the oyster soup and the turkey – two turkeys, one boiled and one roast – and the plum pudding with the ring and the bachelor's button and all the rest of it in it. One can't have sixpences nowadays because they're not pure silver any more. But all the old desserts, the Elvas plums and Carlsbad plums and almonds and raisins, and crystallised fruit and ginger. Dear me, I sound like a catalogue from Fortnum and Mason!

21. oldal

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Esmeralda

Tea was brought in. A hearty meal of scones, crumpets, sandwiches and three kinds of cake. The younger members of the party appreciated the tea.

33. oldal

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Esmeralda

Christmas dinner took place at 2 p.m. and was a feast indeed. Enormous logs crackled merrily in the wide fireplace and above their crackling rose the babel of many tongues talking together. Oyster soup had been consumed, two enormous turkeys had come and gone, mere carcasses of their former selves. Now, the supreme moment, the Christmas pudding was brought in, in state! Old Peverell, his hands and his knees shaking with the weakness of eighty years, permitted no one but himself to bear it in. Mrs Lacey sat, her hands pressed together in nervous apprehension. One Christmas, she felt sure, Peverell would fall down dead. Having either to take the risk of letting him fall down dead or of hurting his feelings to such an extent that he would probably prefer to be dead than alive, she had so far chosen the former alternative. On a silver dish the Christmas pudding reposed in its glory. A large football of a pudding, a piece of holly stuck in it like a triumphant flag and glorious flames of blue and red rising round it. There was a cheer and cries of „Ooh-ah.”

45. oldal

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Esmeralda

Gently, almost gingerly, Hercule Poirot attacked his portion of pudding. He ate a mouthful. It was delicious! He ate another. Something tinkled faintly on his plate. He investigated with a fork. Bridget, on his left, came to his aid.
„You've got something, M. Poirot,” she said. „I wonder what it is.”
Poirot detached a little silver object from the surrounding raisins that clunPoirot detached a little silver object from the surrounding raisins that clung to it.

47. oldal

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Esmeralda

Mince-pies and Christmas dessert followed the pudding. The older members of the party then retired for a welcome siesta before the tea-time ceremony of the lighting of the Christmas tree. Hercule Poirot, however, did not take a siesta. Instead, he made his way to the enormous old-fashioned kitchen.
„It is permitted,” he asked, looking round and beaming, „that I congratulate the cook on this marvellous meal that I have just eaten?”
There was a moment's pause and then Mrs Ross came forward in a stately manner to meet him. She was a large woman, nobly built with all the dignity of a stage duchess. Two lean grey-haired women were beyond in the scullery washing up and a tow-haired girl was moving to and fro between the scullery and the kitchen. But these were obviously mere myrmidons. Mrs Ross was the queen of the kitchen quarters.
„I am glad to hear you enjoyed it, sir,” she said graciously.
„Enjoyed it!” cried Hercule Poirot. With an extravagant foreign gesture he raised his hand to his lips, kissed it, and wafted the kiss to the ceiling. „But you are a genius, Mrs Ross! A genius! Never have I tasted such a wonderful meal. The oyster soup…” he made an expressive noise with his lips. „- and the stuffing. The chestnut stuffing in the turkey, that was quite unique in my experience.”
„Well, it's funny that you should say that, sir,” said Mrs Ross graciously. „It's a very special recipe, that stuffing. It was given me by an Austrian chef that I worked with many years ago. But all the rest,” she added, „is just good, plain English cooking.”
„And is there anything better?” demanded Hercule Poirot.
„Well, it's nice of you to say so, sir. Of course, you being a foreign gentleman might have preferred the continental style. Not but what I can't manage continental dishes too.”
„I am sure, Mrs Ross, you could manage anything! But you must know that English cooking – good English cooking, not the cooking one gets in the second-class hotels or the restaurants – is much appreciated by gourmets on the continent, and I believe I am correct in saying that a special expedition was made to London in the early eighteen hundreds, and a report sent back to France of the wonders of the English puddings. 'We have nothing like that in France,' they wrote. 'It is worth making a journey to London just to taste the varieties and excellencies of the English puddings.' And above all puddings,” continued Poirot, well launched now on a kind of rhapsody, „is the Christmas plum pudding, such as we have eaten today. That was a homemade pudding, was it not? Not a bought one?”
„Yes, indeed, sir. Of my own making and my own recipe such as I've made for many, many years. When I came here Mrs Lacey said that she'd ordered a pudding from a London store to save me the trouble. But no, Madam, I said, that may be kind of you but no bought pudding from a store can equal a homemade Christmas one. Mind you,” said Mrs Ross, warming to her subject like the artist she was, "it was made too soon before the day. A good Christmas pudding should be made some weeks before and allowed to wait. The longer they're kept, within reason, the better they are. I mind now that when I was a child and we went to church every Sunday, we'd start listening for the collect that begins 'Stir up O Lord we beseech thee' because that collect was the signal, as it were, that the puddings should be made that week. And so they always were. We had the collect on the Sunday, and that week sure enough my mother would make the Christmas puddings. And so it should have been here this year. As it was, that pudding was only made three days ago, the day before you arrived, sir. However, I kept to the old custom. Everyone in the house had to come out into the kitchen and have a stir and make a wish. That's an old custom, sir, and I've always held to it.

50. oldal

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Esmeralda

The end of Christmas Day was like the end of most Christmas Days. The tree was lighted, a splendid Christmas cake came in for tea, was greeted with approval but was partaken of only moderately. There was cold supper.

56. oldal


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Hercule Poirot sorozat


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