Fish Sticks and Custard – Challenge by choice

Towards the end of 2012 I decided to do something major for my son. Rick is a Dr Who aficionado and often references Dr who in conversation.  This has rubbed off onto his sister Dianne also.   So, the decision was made to make him a Dr Who scarf.   Seemed like a simple enough task until I discovered there were many variants of such a scarf depending on the season.   Quick call to Rick and he was able to confirm that if he had a choice he would prefer the season 12.5 scarf.  Got a pattern online, got the wool and got knitting with the assistance of Dianne.

This was a big undertaking and little did I realise that the scarf would require 66,000 stitches and would measure over 4 meters long (12 feet) before the tassels were added about 5 months after the stitches were cast-on.  This was a challenge I chose to undertake and my sense of achievement and satisfaction on its completion has been immense – the greatest joy will be to see my son wrapped in its warmth as he faces another cold winter in Hamilton, NZ.

I have kept Rick informed of the scarf’s progress through regular progress reports and photos on facebook and last night was able to send him images of the completed scarf being loved by family members.

I know he is eagerly awaiting its arrival.

While I took on the Dr Who scarf as a challenge by choice there are other Dr Who concepts that I shall avoid…   one of these is the meal of Fish Custard or Fish Sticks and custard that Rick often talks about.  I make the choice to refuse this challenge.  Here is some background on this meal that you may choose to try.                                                                       (Adapted from

Fish custard was a dish enjoyed by the Eleventh Doctor shortly after his regeneration. Having tried and hated many foods offered by young Amelia Pond’s kitchen, the Doctor found frozen fish fingers and custard. He enjoyed them together, dipping the fish fingers into the custard. Amelia took the Doctor’s enjoyment of fish custard in stride, which he noted as a sign of her bravery.

When the Doctor rejoined Amy Pond as an adult, he realised it had been “Fourteen years since fish custard.”

Amy, as an adult, would later invoke this dish in order to convince the Doctor of her truthfulness, although she referred to it as “fish fingers and custard” . Later, a TARDIS voice interface that interacted with the Doctor in the form of Amelia also referenced “fish fingers and custard”.  These incidents showed how much the Doctor and Amy saw the dish as a symbol of their friendship.

During the Year of the Slow Invasion, the Doctor and the adult Amy and Rory ate fish custard at least once together. The Doctor said that if he ran a restaurant, it would be all he would serve. Neither Amy nor Rory appeared to find the taste offensive (or they’d become accustomed to it).


  • Matt Smith initially claimed it was actually fish fingers and custard he was eating and that he found it “gorgeous.”[1] He later admitted the “fish fingers” were actually breaded cakes. [2] Smith later ate genuine fish custard on the Christmas 2010 episode ofThe Graham Norton Show.
  • Steven Moffat has commented on the phenomenon of Doctor Who fans eating fish custard. He claims that it has “taken over from any other breakfast snack.” (CON: Out of Time)
  • In the real world, “fish custard” means something different from its Doctor Who usage. Fish custard is a custard that is actually flavoured with, or contains, fish. It is therefore a savoury dish. In reality, the Doctor ate what would be better termed “fish fingers and custard” — but he himself called the dish “fish custard”.
  • In the days following the broadcast of The Eleventh Hour, many Doctor Who fans, including Charlie McDonnell, posted videos of themselves to YouTube ingesting fish custard, with varying responses.

Challenge by choice – what will I choose as my next challenge???  Any ideas or suggestions



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3 thoughts on “Fish Sticks and Custard – Challenge by choice

  1. Perhaps the “custard”/ white sauce had tartare sauce and/or wasabi/horseradish sauce added for that special flabour that is needed for crumbed fish fingers!


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