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G-20: Dinner diplomacy without Indian spice

The Indian delicacy chicken tikka masala, hailed as ' Britain's national dish' by former Foreign Secretary Robin Cook will not find any place on the dinner table tonight at 10-Downing Street for G-20 leaders and spouses. Organisers of the high-powered dinner have settled for the quintessentially British celebrity chef Jamie Oliver to cook a menu that includes Welsh lamb, Jersey Royal new potatoes and asparagus.

world Updated: Apr 02, 2009 02:21 IST

It was former Foreign Secretary Robin Cook who hailed chicken tikka masala as 'Britain's national dish', but sadly he is no more, and the dinner tonight at 10-Downing Street for G-20 leaders and spouses will not feature the Indian delicacy.

Organisers of the high-powered dinner have settled for the quintessentially British celebrity chef Jamie Oliver to cook a menu that includes Welsh lamb, Jersey Royal new potatoes and asparagus.

Such are the security considerations that even Oliver has not been allowed to carry his personal mobile into the kitchen in 10-Downing Street, where G-20 leaders and their spouses will meet for dinner in two separate quarters, with two separate guest lists.

The menu, which is common to the G-20 and spouses dinners is -- Starter: Organic salmon from Shetland, served with samphire and sea kale, a selection of vegetables from Sussex, Surrey and Kent, and Irish soda bread. The vegetarian option is Goat's cheese.

Main course: Slow-roasted shoulder of lamb from the Elwy Valley in north Wales, with Jersey Royal potatoes, wild mushrooms and mint sauce. The vegetarian option is Lovage and potato dumplings for the main course.