## Chefs by Cubic

### Puzzle explanation

Extra letters in wordplay spelt “round and round the circle completing the charm”, from The Family Reunion by T. S. Eliot. To pass through 32 cells, a circle centred on the grid’s centre had to be drawn with a radius of 3√2, ie, a quarter of the grid’s diagonal. Reading clockwise around the circle, the empty cells were filled to complete (ie, supply the final letters of) two “charms” (flocks of finches): three members of the finch family (redpoll, twite, serin) and three members of the Finch family (Scout, Jem, Atticus) from To Kill a Mockingbird. The title represents “F in CHES”.

### Clue explanations

Conventions: * = anagram, < = reversal

Across
1 SPOOM (POO[R] + M) after S(ailors)
5 TELESMS (S(o)M(e) S(p)E(l)L(s) [O](p)E(n) T(o)) <
11 PERDU D[U] in PERU
13 EXTOL EX + TO + [N]L
14 ANI (Venezuel)AN [D]I(strict)
15 CLODPOLE (LOC[A]L DOPE) *
16 SKAT TA[N]KS <
18 RATTLY RAT + T[R](u)LY
21 SLUICEGATE (S[O] I REGULATE + C(hannel) − R) *
24 RERECORDED (ERE + CO[U]RD) in RED
28 KELTIE (T(oyota) + I[N] + LEEK) *
32 MEUSE ME[D]USAE − A
33 TORY TRY around [T]O
34 ALLOCATE A + (CALL TO) * + [H]E
35 AGE APOG[E]E − PO
36 SLEWS S[C]REWS with L for R
37 IRONER I + RENO[I]R <
38 POSEUSE P[R]OSE + USE
39 OLENT [C]HOLENT − H
Down
1 SPAER ’S + PA[L]ER
2 PENNAE (NÉ[E] around (M)A(y)) after PEN
3 ODIST O[C]D + I(nvolved) + ST
4 MUCKLUCK (L[O]CK around U) after MUCK
6 EROTIC [M]OT in ERIC
7 EXPUNGE EX[P] + (s)PUNGE
8 STOOL STO[L]ON − N + L
9 MOLA MAL[E] * around O’
10 SLEDGER (jo)S[T]LED GER(man)
12 RITT (IT + [I]T) after (pa)R
19 PEDERERO DEER * in (PER + [N]O)
20 ARIMASP A + [G]RIM + ASP
22 LEASOWE (A + SOW) in LEE[T]
23 TWIGGEN (baske)T + W[H]IG + GEN
25 OCTAS OV[E]RCAST * − V(apour) − (vapou)R
26 JELLO JE + ’LL + [C]O(o); ref. Pierre, SD
27 ULES LUS[H] * around E
29 LYSOL L[A]YS + O + L
30 TAN TE[R]N with A for E
31 EVERT EVER(y) + TEA[M] − AE <