Days gone by
Feb. 13, 2013 6:01 pm
Updated: Feb. 19, 2013 9:00 pm
Many years ago, while living in England, the family used to watch a tv series, "Upstairs, Downstairs." Some time ago, I was given the boxed set as a gift, and as I watched these dvd's start to end, I began thinking about British fare, and what I missed
about it... In the series, Mrs Bridges, cooked for an army on an old coal burning stove, in what I seem to recall were copper pots, perhaps called "hammered copper" as that is how they were shaped.
Now, during my time there, I feel that I was very fortunate to spend time in the house mom grew up in, and never ceased to marvel at just how my gran was able to raise 7 children ( Jackie, the first son, passed away at an early age, making 8 siblings total.)
Downstairs was one room, and the smallest galley style kitchen I've ever seen, upstairs having two very small bedrooms. While they had running cold water by then, the "loo" was outside their little stamp sized front yard. I've been chatting with my cousin
who still lives in the area (so to speak) about those days, which has Jean thinking also, about growing up, and being familiar with "the way things were" when our mothers were young. Jean is just a tad older than I... and has a much clearer memory of the
earlier days. Before I returned to the US, Aunt Flo had to vacate that tiny little row house, and move to an apartment building, as the entire area was slated to be bulldozed. Sad... that bit of history was simply flattened to rubble. Mom still tells tales
of WW2, when she and Aunt Gwen were still living at home (they were the youngest.)
Now that I've rambled incessantly, I'd best begin getting to the point! I had mentioned to a friend here in Phoenix that I'd be interested in buying the cookbook, which was full of recipes, made by the infamous Mrs Bridges from the series. Doug
loaned me his copy, and decided not to spend the $$ . I purchased another British cookbook, which has many recipes that I rely on from time to time when the mood strikes.
Of late, I've been introduced to the newer series, "Downton Abbey," and once again am enthralled by the lifestyle of British aristocrats before and after WW1. In this series, though, little mention is made of the menus served daily, or for specific functions.
As always, the house staff does eat a lot of lamb stew, but as for the family, we only hear bits and drabs about this sauce, or that soup... I wonder if a cookbook will be printed at some point? As I understand, here in the US we're watching season 3, and
that there may be a 4th season in the works, while season 3 came to an end last year, in Britain. If not, I'll simply have to pull out my trusted book, and decide just recipes to make - though some of them don't sound overly appetizing!
Be happy, be healthy, be crazy, all!