A Processed Past

Every time I visit my parents I am plunged back into a longing for the food I grew up with. But unlike many people who love food, I did not grow up picking blackberries and making crumbles with mother. I have no happy memories of licking the cake mix off the spoon or shelling peas while lambs gambolled happily in the next field.

Instead, I grew up on Birdseye fish fingers, value beefburgers, Wall’s sausages, Pot Noodles, plastic supermarket sliced bread and tinned macaroni cheese. And there’s absolutely no denying it – I still love them.

I know the sausages are made of lips and arseholes. I know macaroni cheese really shouldn’t be mushy. I know Pot Noodles probably have the power to actually physically leech goodness out of your body and replace it with salt. Which is why I never get to eat them nowadays. But every now and again, just once or twice a year, I’d like to sling proper food forth and binge on microwave chips and Bernard Matthews turkey drummers (the reformed meat “chopped and shaped for your convenience”). I want spaghetti hoops and individual cheese and tomato pizzas and tinned rice pudding for afters.

And so sometimes I do. Not often, mind. But when your dad offers you fish fingers and chips for tea, you just shouldn’t say no.

One Response to “A Processed Past”

  1. mabellucie Says:

    Nice post. I’m lucky enough to have fond memories of home-cooked food, but occasionally my Mum would splash out on a Vesta Chow mein or crispy noodles. We thought we were so adventurous, eating an exotic meal like that! And I remember Mum serving “curry” and us three kids pulling faces and leaving most of it on the plate. Well it was minced beef with a bit of curry powder thrown in, not quite the Chicken Tikka that I enjoy these days!


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