Cake Forks, Coffee Perculators, Sherbert Lemons & Pear Drops

Just finished Nigel Slater’s excellent ‘Eating for England’. It’s not a new book – published by Fourth Estate 2007 – but is hugely enjoyable and very readable. I spent most of the time reminiscing over all the things I remember from my childhood that he catalogues. Lot’s of ‘I remember…’ and ‘did you have…’.

Because it’s not an A to Z of our relationship with food, it drifts from one wonderful, or otherwise, memory to another with such diverse items as Black Pudding, Murray Mints, Ribena, Dairylea and Branston Pickle.

What comes across is a wonderful catalogue of things we’ve forgotten, or would like to forget. His summary of our attitude says it all: ‘the French cook with their senses, the Italians with their hearts, the Spanish with their energy, the Germans with their appetite. The British, bless them, cook with their wallets.’

Whether you remember Fry’s Five Centres or not, read this book for a trip down memory lane. Highly recommended.

Leave a comment

Filed under Everyone

Sad end to ‘The Worst Witch’

Saddened to hear of the recent death, at the age of 72, of Jill Murphy, author of The Worst Witch books.

First published in 1974, the series reached its eighth instalment in 2018. The books were adapted for TV in the 80s and later for the stage. She also wrote the wonderful books, The Large Family, about Mrs Large (an elephant of course) and her offspring. My peronal favourite is Five Minute’s Peace, where Mrs Large attempts a hot, foamy bubble bath and takes her breakfast and a newspaper. Away from her boisterous children she relaxes, but her plan is short-lived.

Leave a comment

Filed under Kids, Readers

Animal Farm – Still relevant today?

Enjoyed spending last Sunday afternoon listening to George Orwell’s Animal Farm on BBC 4xtra read by Roger Ringrose – I never tire of the story.

If ever there was a book that was made for today it’s this one, though I’ve spoken to a few people who can’t see any similarities between the pigs and some of our current world leaders.

The reading was followed by an interesting discussion on the merits, or otherwise, in a 2016 recording of ‘In Our Time’, chaired by Melvyn Bragg.

Leave a comment

Filed under Everyone, Readers