Hair pie! (1956)

In the kitchen on Macquarie Island 1956.

In the kitchen on Macquarie Island 1956. AAD photograph by I. Fox (5027)

The role of the cook is probably scrutinised more than any other on station, as all expeditioners eat!

Antarctic chefs generally go to great length to make their meals interesting and as varied as possible.

When an expeditioner continually criticises and complains about what is served up, it can provoke an innovative response, as happened at Macquarie Island in 1956.

Weather observer that year, Bob Dingle, recalled one obsessive expeditioner who meticulously examined all the food served up to him for bits of hair. On the odd occasion that he found something he would hold it up in the air and say:

Look, here's another short and curly!

Determined to wreak revenge, the cook waited until someone had a hair cut, and made small fruit pies that night for dessert. Filling one with the hair clippings, he served it up to the habitual complainer, smothered in custard.

All the others had been warned this was going to happen. When he got back to the table and put his spoon into the pie, the hair fluffed out ... he was certainly cured of ever mentioning that he had found a hair in his tucker.

Based on an interview with R. Dingle and Tim Bowden, 25 November 1987, ANARE Jubilee History.

This page was last modified on 6 June 2002.