One that we had quite regularly, and is Potato Cakes. These are made from grated potato, mixed with some flour and eggs, and then fried in oil. I have my own version which adds sesame seeds to one side and some grated cheese to the final side. These are very tasty with chutney. These are traditionally called Latkes (or Kartoffelnpuffer), (and seem to be of Jewish origin), but we never called them that.
(Photo by Jonathunder - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=5629332)
On Sundays when we had Roast, we would always make 'baked bread'. You take slices of bread (they can be stale) then put them on a flat tray and dry them out in the oven. I have since found out that this is called Zweiback (German, meaning twice baked).
(Photo by No machine-readable author provided. Rainer Zenz assumed (based on copyright claims). - No machine-readable source provided. Own work assumed (based on copyright claims)., CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=658529)
Mum would often make Corned Beef with cabbage and White Onion Sauce. I liked the meat but was never a fan of the 'boiled to death' cabbage and Onion Sauce. In the following days, Dad would slice the left-over corned meat and dip it in batter and fry it. Dad called this "Burdekin Fish" which I think was a salute to the huge beef industry around the Burdekin River. For dessert Mum would also make banana and pineapple fritters, which were battered, fried and then sprinkled with sugar.
A special treat for breakfast was always one that Dad prepared. He would get a tank loaf of bread, cut the crusts off, cut it into cubes, then drench with hot milk which had sugar dissolved in it. The taste of this was so heavenly to me, and years later I tried to reproduce it, but my versions were always a sad disappointment as they never tasted like those that Dad made.
Some of my childhood foods came from Mum's Scottish side of the family. One of these, which she called Posset (although the definition of Posset seems different), seems quite peculiar if you think about it. Mum would place an Arnott's Arrowroot biscuit in a bowl, cover it with warm sweet milk, put a saucer over the top and leave it for a while until the biscuit was swollen with the milk. If the milk didn't have sugar on it, then sugar was sprinkled over before eating.
Grandma Anderson was a big proponent of Porridge made from oats, and I think she made it every morning. She had a traditional porridge stick (spurtle) for stirring it. The porridge was sprinkled with brown sugar and milk added before eating.
I complained of a sore throat once when staying at Grandma and Grandpa's and Grandpa made me a 'special' mixture to ease the pain. He took some butter and mixed in some sugar to make a little ball which I then sort of dissolved in my mouth. I can't remember if it actually worked, but it sure tasted great.
Mum was not a particularly good cook, but she did her best. When she first married Dad and they went on their honeymoon at a flat at Kingscliffe, Mum had forgotten to take her recipe book, so Dad cooked a stew.
|The happy couple on their honeymoon|
At one stage Mum got a new Sunbeam Frypan and it came with a little recipe book which had a recipe for Cabbage Cantonese. This was basically fried onion, add some mince, then shredded cabbage and sprinkle on some soy sauce, then eat with boiled white rice. This was a fairly cheap meal and became a family favourite.
Other regular meals were a dry mince curry, Sausages and veges, desserts were Ice-cream from Evaporated milk & Jelly, or sometimes a boiled pudding. We also had French Toast, crumbed brains, lambs fry & bacon, pea and ham soup made in the pressure cooker, (which Mum was given as a wedding present).
Mum loved lambs kidneys, but Dad absolutely detested them, so they were only served rarely. One thing that they liked that I detested was tripe. The last time I can remember Mum cooking it was in Melbourne, and I got vomited from the smell. In Melbourne we often had rabbit from the rabbit man. Sunday roast was usually a chicken, but sometimes beef. Mum baked lots of things, but she couldn't get sponge cakes to work. Mum and Dad also really liked tinned soup, and we often had asparagus, tomato, or mushroom Campbell's Soup for lunch.
When we lived in Biggenden, (in 1966), Dad was the Methodist Minister, so we were fairly poor. One of his parishioners must have shot some ducks and gave some to us for a meal. I don't think Mum had cooked it before, but she baked it. We were shocked to find it full of lead pellets! I don't think any of us enjoyed it much, and we certainly never had it again!
The only take-away we ever had was fish and chips, which came wrapped in printed newspaper, and liberally dosed with salt. Dad's favourite to have with them was Potato Scallops, but he would always share one with us kids. Mum loved fresh crab, and Dad would always try to get her some when we had an opportunity for fresh seafood.
Some of Mum's cooking items, which bring back memories are:
|The bowl that the Aeroplane Jelly was always made in.|
|There were a set of 6 different coloured bowls for 'special' desserts|
|The flour sifter for baking days|
|There was a matching aluminium sugar bowl to go with this milk jug|
|The Pyrex casserole dish|
|Dad hand-turned these wooden egg cups|
|These plastic canisters were the height of fashion in the late 60's early 70's|