Friday, May 9, 2014

Catriona McPherson Brings Us the Bloody Girder

Catriona McPherson is back today despite the many awards (too many to name here) she has won since last she graced our virtual doorstep. She has paired her new book, The Day She Died, with a ice cream float, Scottish style.

Here's a little about her new book:

Jessie Constable is a survivor. She holds it together with her job and a couple friends, making sure her dreams and fears are hidden deep inside her. She’s learned not to look for much more until Gus King appears and turns her careful life upside down. Gus’s wife has committed suicide, and his kids need Jessie. But who is the ragged stranger she sees from the corner of her eye? Why are men she doesn’t know threatening her? She wants to believe she can work it all out and make a happy ending. But a girl who’s been burned as much as Jessie should know that things that seem too good to be true often are.

And now Catriona tells us how to make the perfect beverage to drink while reading The Day She Died...

Here is the recipe for an Irn Bru (pronounced Iron Brew) Float such as Jessie in The Day She Died would love and would make for the children she spends much of the novel taking care of.  They ate her sugar fingers and her fried banana sandwiches, after all. (It's no joke to make treats for kids when you're stranded in a beach cottage in the rain, but she does her best.)

I'm calling it a Bloody Girder because the tagline for Irn Bru is "Made in Scotland. From girders." and the sauce in raspberry ripple ice cream is called blood by all Scottish kids. Maybe all kids everywhere?

Bloody Girder (serves 2)

  • One can of Irn Bru. (Like many other things, you can buy it on Amazon, or you could use any other fizzy juice. What does it tell you about the Scottish diet that soda is known as juice?)
  • Two scoops of raspberry ripple ice-cream
  • Extra raspberry sauce for splattering
  • A pinch of salt

Divide the Irn Bru between two tall glasses.
Plop a scoop of ice-cream in on top of each.
Add a sprinkling of salt (Trust me. It started with caramel but salt makes every sweet thing better)
Splatter with extra sauce.

Drink while enjoying a selection of the excellent Irn Bru ads on Youtu- Wait! I mean while reading my new book.  (But really - the ads are amazing.)

NB: sometimes a recipe which sounds toothachingly sweet is described as surprisingly not so.  This isn't one of them.


  1. Loved the book! Love the drink. I had no idea Irn Bru even existed. Thanks for a great post.

  2. As usual, thoroughly entertained by Catriona.

  3. I'm not crazy about the No.7 Irn Bru ad. If I'm generous I can understand it as "Irn Bru makes you feel so exuberant that you sing out the truth with pride", but I fear that it's "transexualism is inherently funny" - and I don't agree. I love the other six, but I'd put Push-Up Bra or Granny was Fanny in at No.7.

    Not that I've thought about this too much or anything!