Tuesday, February 10, 2015

No Two Days the Same....

Another sleepless night for me.  Cannot understand why as I was in a good frame of mind when I went to bed at 10.00pm, but only managed to fall asleep about 5.00am the next morning.
However, I amuse myself with playing mind games while awake, the current ones being "think of five song titles that has a colour" (not difficult), or five with a girl's name (again easy), or five with a boy's name, or five with the name of a flower; or a number....  next time I will try five different forms of transport, and then five different names of towns/villages.   Am having a go at trying to find five different songs that have a food/meal mentioned in the title.  That needs more thinking about.

Of course I could try working out five different ways to serve potatoes/carrots/peas.....and I did like the idea that Cheesepare put forth - 'three different ways of serving the same meat' (including offal). This is definitely a 'cheffy' thing, and one that we would pay for the nose for if served 'three ways' when eating out.  It's certainly a good way to serve three people if we only have small portions of each of the 'three ways'.  Looks posh, but less meat overall than we might normally have served if as one cut only.

Regarding white pepper not discolouring light-coloured foods (scrambled eggs, white sauce etc).  When I was young, all we seemed to have was fine table salt and white pepper.  Nowadays salt is usually larger crystals (rock or sea salt), and black peppercorns, both in individual containers to be ground over the food either when cooking or at table. 

Thankfully, I've discovered ground white pepper sold in small pots, and have taken to using this much more often as it has a stronger flavour than the black peppercorns.   Not essential of course, but it can make a difference to the appearance of a meal (who wants black specks in a white sauce?).

Am hoping to watch the second episode of 'Eat Well....' on iPlayer, but have to say I did lose interest when the mother said she didn't have time to chop carrots, and Greg Wallace almost agreed with her as she had four children.  As did I.  
As the children in the programme were of school age, then perhaps the mother went out to work so would be short on time.   However, as Cathy mentioned 17 trips to the shops per week seemed the norm (was this for the second family shown?) something wrong somewhere. 

Despite the fact we had no automatic washing machine until the children were teenagers (and that was a twin-tub that walked across the floor the moment it started spinning), no disposable nappies when the children were small (my third child was born when the first was 2 years 11 months). am thankful that we didn't have mobile phones, TV, or computers. No central heating, baby foods were all home-made.   No time wasted texting, tweeting, and Facebooking.  Time was spent cooking from scratch (including chopping carrots!), knitting, sewing, and playing with the children.
Meals were simple and traditional, and not expensive when we made them ourselves (convenience foods at that time were almost unknown - apart from cans of baked beans and soups.

Not sure how they choose the families for the progs Margie, perhaps advertise for them?  Maybe to prove that however well educated we/they are, this can sometimes cause more problems. Today it seems we 'go with the flow' - if there are ready-meals on sale, then why not save time and buy them?  Don't look further at the contents, nutrition etc, just make things easier for ourselves. 

Today we seem to be living a life of technology, much done for us by machines, food processed etc.  No need to think for ourselves any more.  And there the danger lies.    Perhaps there should be a programme called 'Think More and Spend Less'. 

It could be said that with almost everything 'domestic', we have allowed the manufacturers to take over, and it does seem that food is the only thing we allow ourselves to get concerned about.  If at all.
Once upon a time we used to hand-knit all our sweaters, baby-clothes, socks, hats, gloves, scarves.  Some people used to even spin the wool from sheep's fleece. Now we buy the garments and no-one complains about that.

 We used to buy material and make our own dresses, suits etc, but few do that now, and if they do it is counted as almost a hobby.    Maybe home-cooking is also regarded as a hobby, an art-form, a skill.  Skills that should be brought back as a way of life, not just when we feel like doing something different.  But then, not everyone is the same.  Many are not really interested in food other than it tastes good, who makes it, what goes into it seems not that important.   Thing about a blog such as this it is food-based (or used to be), so there will be more interest, especially when we find out how easily we can save money when we put more thought into the foods we buy and the meals we then make, and if we can buy a really inexpensive ready-meal that appears to cost less than if we made it ourselves from scratch, then who would blame us if we walked up that road?

As I'm in an awkward mood today, finding fault where there really shouldn't be any, and blaming progress, it's because I preferred life how it used to be.  In many ways it was a lot harder than it is now, but far more enjoyable as we could then pat ourselves on the back when we managed to achieve the things that no-one seems bothered about today.   Quite honestly, if I could go back to those 'Little House on the Prairie' days I'd be mightily content with my lot. 

Unfortunately, I've missed almost a week of viewing the above prog. so have missed the arrival of the replacement for the Oleson daughter  (who had grown up, married and had twins).  Another young girl seems to have joined the Ingalls clan, a half-sister to some-one? It's not quite as interesting now that Laura herself has grown up, got married and is the school-teacher.  Liked it better when the Ingalls children were younger. 

Anyway, that's me for today, hoping that tonight I will manage to get a good night's sleep.  Busy tomorrow, so my next blog will probably be Thursday/Friday.  All depends on circs. 

As to those little treats Jane, have allowed myself several, but sadly - now I'm losing my sense of taste - these don't cheer me up as hoped for.  Some days better than others, so let's hope the flavours return in full strength once again.  Last time I 'went off' coffee was when I was pregnant some 60 years ago!!!

Really must finish now,  hope you all have a good day.  Norris is on charge in the hope I can grab a trip down to the shops later this week.  That'll make a change (for the better).  TTFN.