‘Here’s the trouble with soft, mushy food like omelettes when you’re watching penalty shoot-outs – or shoot-outs between protestors and the militia,’ said Oliver at the official launch. ‘It falls out of your mouth when you go all slack-jawed with disgust. Next thing you know, you’re left with egg on your face, egg on your England shirt and egg on the sofa and, ooh blimey, here comes the Mrs with a damp cloth and a threatening finger over the off switch.’
In honour of the host country, Oliver has created one central finger food. ‘Nuts – it’s all gonna go Brazil nuts one way or the other and my nutty snacks make convenient eating, whether you’re England get hammered by Bosnia-Hercegovina, Italy in a strop over moisturising facilities, favelas being heartlessly flattened by army tanks on Al Jazeera or Roy Hodgson’s resignation ceremony.’
The tie-in book has been hailed as the first to combine quick-cook recipes and geopolitical analysis. Via Sainsbury’s, Oliver has already supplied the England squad with some convenient, high-energy, easy-to-digest-while-ignoring-poverty-and-murder snacks.
‘These little beauties are as firm as the England squad’s team of security guards, see?,’ he writes in the introduction. ‘. These fellas are hand-picked fighters, keeping our boys and their wives, girlfriends and female tango-partners safe 24/7. They’re big ex-SAS men, attracted by the Brazil’s free-for-all violence, big juicy steaks and big exotic prostitutes.’
Controversially the nutty bars will also be made available for purchase on the streets of Brazil for fans, protestors and militias alike. Oliver promises it will be possible to subsist on ‘these little monkeys’ over long periods of watching, playing, fighting or torture. Match referees have been advised to bodily secrete specially shaped and hermetically wrapped versions of the snack on their bodies in case of kidnap.
‘No mouth leakage, no annoying crumbs or stains and no grief from the other half back home,’ promises Oliver. ‘So no problemo if you and her fancy a bit of World Cup Willy during the duller games, or after England have been evacuated on the advice of the Foreign Office, or during long bouts of gloomy analysis by John Simpson.’