Stock is where it all begins. The chef’s primordial soup. Henry First could feel the kitchen waiting; he could feel it demanding magic. One last trick, please, it said to him. On the steel table in front of him was the cast of secondary characters: vegetables, raw carcass bones, trimmings and waste. Bit parts awaiting the star.
Having entered the Restaurant of the Year competition (© the Furness Kindle & Flint corporation), Henry begins preparing a dish of lampreys that he’ll submit to the judges, who are due to arrive shortly. Unfortunately, in the confusion, someone is injured . . . and Henry’s afternoon begins to unravel. Only a miracle – or a chance discovery – can save him.