Never knowingly undersolved.

Enigmatic Variations No. 957 – Products by Samuel

Posted by mc_rapper67 on March 19th, 2011


A tasty treat of a puzzle – maybe at the easier end of the EV spectrum, once the nicely topical theme had been cracked.

The solver was to find four unclued entries making an interim ‘product’, which had to be treated according to an another unclued entry, and then moved thematically, to reveal the final product. Corrected misprints in 28 clues suggested a potential hazard if this movement occurred unsuccessfully, and four further undefined entries would give common accompaniments.

As luck would have it, I didn’t start this until the Tuesday after publication, and I spent the train journey home from London fitting in as many non-thematic entries as I could, while mulling over the fairly complex preamble. As I walked through the door, my senses were assailed by the sound of excited children, the smell of lemon juice and golden syrup – and the ‘plop’ of an unsuccessfully tossed pancake hitting the floor. ‘Here’s Daddy, he’s a much better tosser than Mummy’ – or at least, I think that’s what she said – and it all fell into place, soon after.

The interim product is 19A – ‘batter’ – made of the unclued EGG, FLOUR, MILK and SALT, each with plenty of crossing letters to help work them out. This interim mixture had to be entered in lower case and flipped over, so the ‘b’ makes the ‘p’ of pANCAKE, down from the square numbered 19. Accompaniments were LEMON, SUGAR, JAM and ORANGE. The corrected letters gave ‘OUT OF THE FRYING PAN, INTO THE FIRE’.

Personally, I found the clueing relatively gentle, but enjoyably so, and quite a few of the misprints were easy to spot. The lower case/flipping device was a nice touch. CRUORES (blood masses, or clots), PAREIRA (climbing plant) and LAPJE (South African cloth, or rag) were new to me, as well as ORZO (pasta, in 24D), so a bit of Chambers referencing was required, once these clues had been parsed.

Anyway, I was thinking of giving up crosswording for Lent – but it is hard when they are as tasty and enjoyable as this one!…

Clue No Misprints Entry Clue, with corrections in bold /
1A   LOWER CASE See preamble (9, 2 words)  /
Unclued – thematic deduction
8A   EGG Unclued (3)  /
Unclued – thematic deduction
11A O CRUORES Vintage gold excites vacuously blond blood masses (7)  /
CRU (vintage, as in wine) + OR (gold) + ES (ExciteS emptied, or vacuous)
13A   ORANGE Love to take sides (6)  /
O (love, or zero/nil) + RANGE (to take sides, line up)
Undefined – ‘accompaniment’
14A U GOOSE Dick’s Duck’s larger relative goes running round circuit (5)  /
anag (i.e. running) of GOES, around O (circuit, or lap)
15A T EMERGE Issue our out edict initially to combine (6)  /
E (initial letter of Edict) + MERGE (combine)
17A O EATS Ford Food river tides emptied (4)  /
EA (river, or running water) + TS (TideS emptied)
18A F PAREIRA Rapier disfigured amateur climber bound found in India (7)  /
anag (i.e. disfigured) of RAPIER, plus A (amateur)
19A   batter Be impatient for old-timers overcoming the resistance (6)  /
BATE (obsolete for be impatient) around T (the), plus R (resistance)
Undefined – ‘PRODUCT’ – entered in lower case, and flipped over
21A   FLOUR Unclued (5)  /
Unclued – thematic deduction
22A T LAPJE Surround judge beginning to efface Mandela’s cloth bib bit? (5)  /
LAP (to surround, or enclose) + J (judge) + E (beginning of Efface)
24A H BEAUNE Perhaps write white wine books – slave historically gets gold for his! (6)  /
B (books) + E-AU-NE (ESNE – slave – with AU – gold – for S – his, possessive indication)
26A E ENHALOS Salon he disrupted adds gloaming gleaming covering to head? (7)  /
anag (i.e. disrupted) of SALON HE
no num   SALT Unclued (4)  /
Unclued – thematic deduction
30A F RETAMA Soak a short bloke slower flower in the desert? (6)  /
RET (soak) + A + MA (MAn, or bloke, cut short)
31A R DATUM Slung mud at numbed number set presented? (5)  /
anag (i.e. slung) of MUD AT
32A Y DIGITS Taunt Italian soldier at first – there’s two of these in forts forty(6)  /
DIG (taunt) + IT (Italian) + S (first letter of Soldier)
33A I SKIDOOS Sons pretend on outsize ace ice vehicles? (7)  /
S (sons) + KID (pretend) + O (on) + OS (outsize)
34A N SEC Tenor leaves party dry when describing wife wine (3)  /
SEC = SECT (party) minus T (tenor)
35A G ONIONSKIN Oik on inn’s broken very thin pane page (9)  /
anag (i.e. broken) of OIK ON INNS
Clue No Misprints Entry Clue, with corrections in bold  /
2D P OCREA Old race destroyed bit of a slant plant? (5)  /
O (old) + anag (i.e. destroyed) of RACE
3D A WHAM Crush Crash weak actor (4)  /
W (weak) + HAM (actor)
4D N ERNEST Nerd undressed to lodge map man of intent (6)  /
ER (nERd, stripped) + NEST (to lodge)
5D I REGRATE Historically left lift price on cage? (7)  /
RE (on, or regarding) + GRATE (cage)
6D N ARREAR Academy’s right to hold up movies monies due? (6)  /
A (academy) + R (right) + REAR (raise, or hold up)
7D   SUGAR Lookout post’s abandoned by navy (5)  /
SUGAR = SUNGAR (look-out post) minus N (Navy)
Undefined – ‘accompaniment’
8D T EROSION Run out during clamour over easing eating away (7)  /
ESION (NOISE – clamour – turned over) around RO (run out, as in cricket)
9D O GEST Old story about live love images teases somewhat (4)  /
hidden word in ‘imaGES Teases’
10D   NOSEBLEEDS Noble sees about taking diamonds for haemorrhages (10)  /
anag (i.e. about) of NOBLE SEES + D (diamonds)
12D T SEPARATIST ESA ETA member, perhaps, upset space artist abandoning corps (10)  /
anag (i.e. upset) of SPACE ARTIST minus C (corps)
16D H EEL Strip bit of pad off fist fish (3)  /
EEL = PEEL (strip) with P (bit of Pad) taken off
20D E APHOTIC Apparently stop response – one can’t set see in such a place (7)  /
AP (abbrev. of apparently) + HO (stop, interjection) + TIC (response)
21D F FACTION Force lawsuit for partly tactual factual work (7)  /
F (force) + ACTION (lawsuit)
23D   JAM Journal’s backing mother (3)  /
J (journal) + AM (MA, or mother, backed up)
Undefined – ‘accompaniment’
24D I BORZOI Bug Big dog in the same place about eating pasta (6)  /
BI (IB, or ibidem, Latin – ‘in the same place’, raised) around ORZO (pasta)
25D R USAGES Flag ecstasy held by American two or move more customs (6)  /
US (American), around SAG (flag, or tire) plus E (ecstasy)
27D   LEMON The French madam’s tipsy (5)  /
LE (‘the’, in French) + M (Madam) + ON (drunk, or tipsy)
Undefined – ‘accompaniment’
28D   LATHI Stick strip in (5)  /
LATH (strip) + I (in)
29D E CAKE Clubs lay hold of topless rich broad bread(4)  /
C (Clubs) + AKE (tAKE, lay hold of, topless)
no num   MILK Unclued (4)  /
Unclued – thematic deduction

One Response to “Enigmatic Variations No. 957 – Products by Samuel”

  1. Samuel says:

    Thanks for the positive write-up, and I’m pleased that you enjoyed the puzzle. Most feedback received privately has been very positive, but I’d like to apologise to the two silvers I’ve heard from who thought it wasn’t clear whether just the first letter of BATTER, or the whole word. The answer is that one is surely meant to flip the entire interim product, or one would end up with a final product that looks most unappetising. Unfortunately after my culinary disaster on the day itself, I’d have been happy with just flipping part of the product. In my case, the message from misprints should have read “out of the frying pan onto the floor”!

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