Friday, March 12, 2010
Foods of yesteryear
When you look at today's foods, the ethnic cooking, the diet cooking, the cosmopolitan choices of ingredients available, the prepared foods, the restaurant meals, the foodstuffs of yesteryear are frequently forgotten ! The things we ate during the 2nd world war and the pioneer food and the poor person foodstuffs are of some interest,at least to me. I have tried some of these recipes to take a fresh look at what we ate in those days. Raisin pie was as common as apple pie when I was a kid. No one I know eats raisin pie today but it is an old taste and a good taste, as I found out when I made one. The danger is the pounds it will add. How about Shoo Fly Pie! The pianist and I tried it once. Brown sugar and molasses! When that was what you had, that's what you used. I tried Irish Soda Bread once and cooked it in the fireplace on a grate insert over wood coals. It wasn't bad for someone without yeast. Just a bit labor intensive. Colcannon, I never tried, but I grew lots of kale one year and mixed it in with mashed potato. Delicious. Mock apple pie my mother made a few times. Soda crackers with lemon juice and sugar,a substitute for apples. I made that as well, experimentally . It's a poor substitute for apple pie, but it is surprisingly deceptive. If we were still hungry after supper my mother would say we could have bread and milk. I remember eating bread and milk laced with sugar. It was filling and I liked it. I never had Brewis till we went to Nova Scotia last year and ordered it at a restaurant. It wasn't too bad. I can't make it here on Lotus Island since salt cod is not readily available . I guess when some people talk about plain cooking, at least in those times the plain cooks cooked, which may not always be the case today. Seems to me the more shiny copper tools hanging from the show kitchen rafters, the less cooking is being done. Maybe this inverse assumption is my hangup! I admit it! Let's just say that a standing rib roast with gravy, tarragon roasted potatoes , broccoli cooked "al dente", and deep dish Gravenstein apple pie, cooked in a country kitchen, is not plain cooking by any definition!