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    • MrsLurcherwalker
    • By MrsLurcherwalker 25th Nov 17, 8:28 PM
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    What was day to day food in your childhood?
    • #1
    • 25th Nov 17, 8:28 PM
    What was day to day food in your childhood? 25th Nov 17 at 8:28 PM
    Hi, I'm aware of price rises across the board whenever I shop and also those welcome YS bargains are very thin on the ground these days too. I'm trying to remember the meals we had as 'everyday' meals way back when to see if I can give us tasty meals from simpler ingredients and also cut back on some of the outlay on the weekly shop. I'm sure main meals weren't as exotic as is the norm now. I've made a start on the list for me but I'm aware there will be regional differences and wonder what was nicest to eat for supper from childhood memories in other areas in the hope of new ideas that use simple ingredients that won't break the budget every week.

    We had stews with dumplings, sausage and mash, hot pot, pie, mash and peas etc. care to share childhood favourites?

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    Last edited by MSE Andrea; 06-12-2017 at 9:31 AM.
    Thumpers mum was right - if you can't find anything nice to say don't say anything at all!
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    • sillyvixen
    • By sillyvixen 29th Nov 17, 10:37 PM
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    In my teenage years, we got a microwave, and mum used to get those pizzas with the Styrofoam under the base (think of the value ranges by now days standards) and nuke them .. Styrofoam included. We were happy with our soggy cheese and synthetic tomato offering untill my brother requested to go to pizza hut for his birthday meal.
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    • LameWolf
    • By LameWolf 30th Nov 17, 2:02 PM
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    My mother wouldn't have allowed a microwave anywhere near her kitchen; it was only in the 1990s when she had two lodgers that she agreed to have a washing machine; up to then, she insisted on doing all the washing by hand, with the "whites" being boiled up in an old fashioned copper.

    I have a horrible memory when I was little - I must've been about four, it was before I started school - she used to empty the copper using a two-gallon bucket - there was a sort of tap near the bottom, she would put the bucket under the tap, and when it was full, lift it up and tip the water down the sink. Anyways, this one day, the two gallons of near-boiling water ended up getting tipped all over me!!

    We never had anything like pizza - my father wouldn't eat "foreign food" - and in fact the only form of pasta we ever had was tinned spaghetti rings in tomato sauce.
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    • kboss2010
    • By kboss2010 30th Nov 17, 8:26 PM
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    Goodness! I hope you had no lasting damage from that incident, Lamewolf.
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    • Eenymeeny
    • By Eenymeeny 2nd Dec 17, 9:47 AM
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    I remember that chips were a once a week treat, always home-made from the chip pan. They were usually served with fried egg which is still a favourite now! Beans were added sometimes, maybe when Mum was feeling flush! A lot of things were deep fried then, like sausages and scotch eggs. No worries about cholesterol as we didn't know that it existed.
    I do remember fritters though, slices of potatoes dipped in batter and deep fried. I suppose that they were a cheap filler and we all loved them. The thing was, they were served as part of a meal. We were very rarely given crisps, they were reserved for picnics.
    The beautiful thing about learning is nobody can take it away from you.
    Thanks to everyone who contributes to this wonderful forum. I'm very grateful for the guidance and friendliness that I always receive from you.
    • nmlc
    • By nmlc 3rd Dec 17, 11:09 AM
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    Morning everyone

    This thread has really brought back some childhood memories, I was born in 1970. Luckily my mum was a very good plain cook, as was my nan, her mum. I remember coming home from school on a Friday and she would be in the kitchen with her Kenwood chef mixer going, and there would be cooling racks on the worktop full of cakes, jam tarts, mince pies, possibly a fruit pie, apple and blackberry or raspberry - we live in a rural area and it's the norm for most people to have gardens and grow their own veg/fruit. I remember also having a hot meal in the evening - a proper dinner, on a Saturday we'd very often have fish and chips from the chip shop or I remember myself and my dad having pan cooked kippers and bread and butter. Also because we lived rurally, mum didn't drive and dad was self employed so worked very long hours, we used to have the Co-op deliver milk and then the baker came in his van, he had this huge basket that he would come to the door with and as a treat on a Saturday we could pick a cake, (fresh cream doughnuts, or I remember a doughnut type cake with a blob of jam and then cream on it).

    We used to always have to sit at the table for meals, and we had to ask to leave, "thank you for my dinner, please may I leave the table".

    Keep safe and well x

    nmlc x
    • camelot1001
    • By camelot1001 3rd Dec 17, 11:50 AM
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    I do remember fritters though, slices of potatoes dipped in batter and deep fried. I suppose that they were a cheap filler and we all loved them. The thing was, they were served as part of a meal.
    Originally posted by Eenymeeny
    The chip shops round here sell them and I treat myself every now and again - best eaten immediately out of the paper with lashings of salt and vinegar!
    • Eenymeeny
    • By Eenymeeny 4th Dec 17, 1:22 PM
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    The chip shops round here sell them and I treat myself every now and again - best eaten immediately out of the paper with lashings of salt and vinegar!
    Originally posted by camelot1001
    Haven't been to the chip shop for years but that would make a trip to the chip shop well worth while! (Thanks, I'll look out for that next time we are 'over the border' )
    The beautiful thing about learning is nobody can take it away from you.
    Thanks to everyone who contributes to this wonderful forum. I'm very grateful for the guidance and friendliness that I always receive from you.
    • Pollycat
    • By Pollycat 4th Dec 17, 1:44 PM
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    Haven't been to the chip shop for years but that would make a trip to the chip shop well worth while! (Thanks, I'll look out for that next time we are 'over the border' )
    Originally posted by Eenymeeny
    We're much further South but our chippies sell them.
    • YorksLass
    • By YorksLass 4th Dec 17, 7:35 PM
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    I remember that chips were a once a week treat, always home-made from the chip pan. They were usually served with fried egg which is still a favourite now!

    Most definitely. We have this sometimes when there's more week left than cash and it always makes an appearance somewhere between Christmas and NY!

    I do remember fritters though, slices of potatoes dipped in batter and deep fried.

    We called them potato scollops (not scallops as in fish) and guess what? I made some a couple of weeks ago and yes, I have a chip pan filled with beef dripping.
    Originally posted by Eenymeeny
    Loving this thread, so many memories. Born in 1949, some food was still on ration but Mum was a good plain cook and I don't ever remember going hungry.

    Sunday dinner was always a roast - usually cheap cuts of beef, lamb or pork - with plenty of veg, potatoes, gravy. Yorkshire puds were served before the meal with lashings of onion gravy. Any leftover meat was minced up to make pie filling or a stew with yet more veggies and pulses added, served with dumplings. Liver & onions, pork chops with the kidney still in them, steak & kidney pie. I think chicken must have been expensive as it was reserved for Christmas and sometimes Easter. At Christmas the Yorkshire puds were replaced by an oatmeal stuffing mix that was well seasoned with sage & thyme.

    Mum baked her own bread in the oven next to the coal fire as well as oven cakes that were set to cool on the back doorstep. We were always warned not to eat them while they were still warm in case they gave you indigestion - not sure how true this was though, it may well have been a ploy to make them last longer! She made wonderful fruit pies - usually rhubarb, apple, gooseberry, blackberry or bilberry. Custard tart, rice pudding with skin on it, other milk puddings like semolina, scones, fruit buns were favourites too.

    Breakfasts were usually porridge, shredded wheat, sometimes a boiled egg, bacon & tomato sandwich or sausage that had to come from the Co-op butchers.

    We didn't have a lot of tinned food other than fruit salad (usually with evaporated milk), Spam (fritters again), and garden peas when fresh ones were out of season. Veggies were grown in the back garden and traded with the next door neighbour who would have different crops. He also had hens and when they were laying well he'd give us eggs. We had strawberries in abundance during the summer thanks to Dad's garden and I still prefer English strawberries to this day.

    Sunday tea was usually a salad of sorts (lettuce, tomato, cucumber) with best ham carved off the bone, followed by a piece of whatever cake had been baked. Weekday meals didn't always finish with a pudding, it was quite often a piece of bread with jam or lemon curd. Oh, and malt & cod liver oil on bread.

    Milk was delivered by the milkman to the doorstep and I remember he also sold glass bottles of wonderful fresh orange juice, a now and again treat. As was ice cream on a Sunday that was dispensed into a bowl or jug.

    Other memories: toast or crumpets stuck on a toasting fork in front of the fire, chestnuts on the fire grate, Horlicks, Oxo drinks with crackers, pie & peas. And Camp coffee, a coffee substitute made from chicory, that tasted nothing like coffee at all! Around Bonfire night we always had parkin, cinder toffee, toffee apples and spuds cooked in the bonfire.

    Friday tea was usually fish & chips from the chippie but not if a Saturday trip to the cinema was in the offing as we'd have them on our way home, eaten from the paper with our fingers.

    Dad was a bit picky sometimes and wouldn't have corned beef (a hangover from his Navy days), rabbit (mixamatosis) or any kind of shellfish (an episode of food poisoning). We never had anything like spaghetti or curry either as it was deemed to be "foreign muck". But he would have tripe, pigs cheek etc. Yuk.
    Be kind to others and to yourself too. Life has its ups and downs, use the ups to overcome the downs!
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    • suki1964
    • By suki1964 4th Dec 17, 8:05 PM
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    Sunday was roast beef or pork, veggies from the garden

    Monday was cold meat and bubble

    Tuesday was the last remains of the meat, in a pie plate

    Wednesday was scotch egg or egg, ham and tomato pie with mash and tinned spaghetti ( yuck)

    Thursday was sausages and mash

    Friday was fish and chips from bejam

    Saturday was either a something meaty cooked in the pressure cooker or an old fashioned English curry with saltanas and served with rice and slice banana and salted crisps
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    • thriftwizard
    • By thriftwizard 4th Dec 17, 10:32 PM
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    We kind of had two separate lives; before Dad died & afterwards. He was a country Rector so we were generally financially penniless but had a huge & productive garden, complete with orchard, veg patch & chickens as well as the big lawn for having fetes and parish picnics on. The usual Sunday lunch was a huge chicken (there were 7 of us in the family) complete with roast spuds & lashings of fresh veg, followed by a traditional pudding of some sort. Some weeks a chook or two would have been exchanged with my "uncle" the churchwarden, who was a beef & dairy farmer, or the sheep farmer whose land surrounded the Rectory, and my grandfather raised pigs in his vicarage garden 10 miles away in the next county, so beef, mutton & ham also featured. But most of the rest of the week's menus would feature eggs, bacon, ham, sausages, possibly mince, or fish that Dad had caught at the local reservoir. The occasional pheasant came our way from the gentry, too, all prepared by my "aunt" who had been "in service" as a cook until the late 50s and just attached herself to our family by default.

    When Dad died, Mum was left with just £11 in the bank, two dependent children & no visible means of support, having not been in paid employment since she married. We had to move upcountry for her to find a job & a roof over our heads, & Aunt Ethel was left behind in the pretty little Devon cottage that she actually owned. Mum really hated cooking, but she did her level best on her very limited budget, and luckily it was the early 70s and just about everyone else was broke too, so we never really noticed that meals often consisted of just a fried egg or baked beans on toast, or cauliflower cheese, and a Ski yogurt or a Golden Delicious apple, though we were quite often hungry by bedtime. She did once have a go at growing some veg, but succeeded in killing the lot by applying neat fertiliser.

    Bless her, she still hates cooking & is very happy to survive on elderly frozen "ping-cuisine" meals but both my younger brother & I have turned into grow-your-own fanatics and adventurous cooks, preservers & fermenters now!

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    • Teacher2
    • By Teacher2 6th Dec 17, 7:16 AM
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    My mother was an Irish woman, one of eight who was brought up on a very poor farm and never learned to cook properly. We were not well off either and packets and tins often eked out our daily fare.

    We always had a roast on Sunday with chicken alternating with half a lamb shoulder. Mum’s roast potatoes were bullet hard and never parboiled. We had tinned mandarins and evaporated milk or Lyon’s boxed coffee cake or Jaffa cakes for pud.

    On Saturdays we had a Vesta curry, one box between four but made to go further with some tinned meat. It seemed very exotic at the time and was a real treat.

    During the week we children had a cooked school meal and Mum, who was out working all day, cooked us an evening meal too. Some of the things we had were:-toad in the hole, Irish stew, fried mackerel, sausages and beans, fish fingers, beans and fried egg ( a packet of ten between four of us, three for the adults and two for the children), frozen pies and veg (dad worked for Findus for a while), chops, liver
    and the one I couldn’t force down - boiled bacon, cabbage and butter
    beans. Mum served mash with nearly everything. When dad drove the Findus lorry we also had Granny’s Homemade cakes and other treats.

    My great food revelations came when I mixed with the middle classes. When young I went to tea with someone from school and had salad, bread and butter and a wrapped chocolate biscuit. My other half introduced me in one heady week to beef Bourguignon, gin and tonic
    and proper ground coffee and a teacher who asked me to dinner had Ratatouille, rare beef and lemon sorbet served in frozen lemons from a delicatessen as well as real chocolate mousse from the same place.

    I was very lucky to have a terrifyingly strict Scottish domestic science teacher, who, as well as terrorising the girls, taught us the basics of cooking: sauces, breads, cakes, puddings, preserves, the lot. In a small country school I learned how to cook what, with adaptation, has become a real range of foods. I make my own cakes, preserves, and bread and am experimental as she gave me knowledge and confidence. Last week I had a go at curing and made Gravadlax which turned out really well. I bless that woman’s memory.

    Food has moved on very far and fast since the sixties and we live today like emperors lived in the past with the range and quality of what is in the shops.

    A last thought. I remember watching ‘Tomorrow’s World’ on the TV in the sixties where they showed us food from the future:- a couple of pills on a plate. How I laugh when I think of that in Waitrose or M and S Simply Food!
    • khris210
    • By khris210 6th Dec 17, 12:51 PM
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    Wartime baby
    I was born in 1942, and for the first 3 years of my life my Mum and I lived in a little village in the country with my "Aunt" Ev( elyn) while the men were at war. There were only a few children in the village and I suspect we were spoilt rotten with no shortage of food, but after the war things were different. My abiding memories are of baked potatoes and cheese on toast, but not at the same meal. Also sugar sandwiches (nothing wrong with my teeth, still got 27) my mother was not very domesticated and not a good cook. I think we had a roast most Sundays, I remember once my father dropped the ham joint in the washing up water. Quick rinse and nobody noticed! There was never much food in the house. We had a meat safe out in the yard - a box with a zinc mesh for a door. I remember my mother often saying "I'm not hungry" when mealtimes came around. Now my wife doesn't really understand when I clean my plate down to the pattern! I don't remember actually being hungry though. At 16 I joined the RAF and got three or four big meals a day, but have never weighed more than 11 stone. Lucky metabolism, I guess.
    Last edited by khris210; 06-12-2017 at 12:55 PM. Reason: Actually counted my teeth. One less than I thought!
    • lynnedownunder
    • By lynnedownunder 6th Dec 17, 4:10 PM
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    We had set meals on set days of the week which included sausages and mash, mince and potatoes or shepherds pie,, braising steak and potatoes, bacon, potatoes and turnip, fish and chips (from the freezer on food shopping night), always a roast on Sunday and fish and chips from the chippy on a Saturday as mum refused to cook!
    • stoozie1
    • By stoozie1 6th Dec 17, 4:14 PM
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    It's amazing to me how many posters had a sunday roast whilst being relatively impoverished foodwise the rest of the week.

    We are far from being in food poverty but I don't choose to afford a roast meal except at Christmas.
    • Nargleblast
    • By Nargleblast 6th Dec 17, 4:23 PM
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    Sundays years ago were more special, a proper roast dinner was the rule of the day. It wasn!!!8217;t that expensive when you realise the leftovers formed the basis of a couple more days!!!8217; meals. You could have cold meat and pickles Monday, curry or pie Tuesday and make soup out of what was left.
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    • MrsLurcherwalker
    • By MrsLurcherwalker 6th Dec 17, 4:32 PM
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    Sundays in childhood were a day of rest, the shops open were little corner shops and that wasn't for all day either but everything else closed at 5.30 on Saturday afternoon and didn't re-open until Monday morning. Many people went to church on Sunday mornings and the roast for lunch was put in a slow oven as they went and ready enough so that only the veg had to be cooked when you got home again. Sunday afternoons were usually a walk and then a proper 'Sunday Tea' of cold meat, salad, bread and butter, tinned fruit and tinned cream and some kind of cake with a cup of tea followed that. Many people worked at manual and I think were glad to be able to take a rest on one day of the week.
    Thumpers mum was right - if you can't find anything nice to say don't say anything at all!
    • Nargleblast
    • By Nargleblast 6th Dec 17, 4:36 PM
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    I remember shops being closed on Good Friday. The main meal was always served at lunchtime and it was always fish in some form or other. Hot cross buns were usually home made and only eaten on that day.
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    • Primrose
    • By Primrose 6th Dec 17, 4:57 PM
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    Yes, Sundays were a special day for the family before the law changed and shops were allowed to open, so they merited a special roast dinner and I can recall my dad who had a senior office job still having to work Saturday mornings so Sunday was definitely a day for recharging of batteries or catching up with grandparents.

    I sometimes think that in today!!!8217;s frenzied times we would benefit from one weekend per month when shops were forced to close on Sundays so that working parents could have a little more !!!8220;downtime!!!8221; together. I suspect many more Sunday meals are taken on the hoof these days with snacks or takeaways.
    • oystercatcher
    • By oystercatcher 6th Dec 17, 5:13 PM
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    My experiences seem to be a bit different. I was born in the early 60's , my parents went vegetarian in the late sixties so my childhood memories of food center around cheese, lentils and that awful TVP (textured vegetable protein , made from soya) which was even more tasteless then than it is now.

    Jacket potato with cheese and a helping of peas. macaroni cheese, lentil roast, pasta with tinned tomato sauce and cheese sprinkled on. Nut roast for christmas dinner and special occaisions. Cheese and mushroom rissoto was my very favourite meal. Pizza with a homemade base and masses of grated carrot and courgette under the cheese which went rather soggy and nasty .

    Mum made all our bread , it was wholemeal and very solid, and all our jam and chutney for the year and wine which was given away as she didn't like my Dad drinking (as far as I know he wasn't excessive) !!

    Mum also liked to find scavenged food so we had nettle soup which we hated, salad made from dandelion leaves, that was vile too. Homemade quince marmalade made from neighbours trees. I also remember experiments with making horseradish sauce from roots dug up 'over the fields' and collecting comfrey leaves , blackberries, elderberries, wild raspberries . I'm sure there were many other things I have forgotten too.
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