The Last Parsnip

A Truly Unbelievable Dining Experience from Chef Bryce Chartwell


The dish was first served at Hamilton’s Brasserie on the Strand during the summer of 1876. Its connection to Dame Emily Marbury, wife of Viscount Hall, assistant Viceroy to India, remains murky at best. The Dame, well known for her outlandish entertaining and riotous behavior, had no known connection to the restaurant. While her love of brandy was well documented, she makes no mention of the dish in her memoirs. After the Dame’s untimely death in 1878, the dish achieved a modicum of popularity at Hamilton’s up until the catastrophic fire of 1881.



1 lb fine sugar

2 cups double cream

4 eggs

1 tsp vanilla essence

2 cups brandy

1 cup milk



Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees

Beat the eggs and blend in the sugar, cream and vanilla essence

Pour in milk, and 1 cup of brandy

Mix until smooth

Pour into dome shaped baking dish

Bake in oven for 20 minutes

Invert dish, and carefully tip mixture out onto a serving dish

Drizzle over remaining brandy, and light immediately

Extinguish flames by placing both hands over the fire in a swift, firm motion


Serves thirteen.


Inner Cooking Notes

The dish is traditionally served in a darkened room. Try not to look directly at the burning flames – since the resulting retinal after image can greatly increase the chances of serious burns.


Key Facts

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes

Difficulty level: Moderate

Known fatalities: 12