Tuesday, 20 September 2011

In Memory of Grandmothers - and the importance of taste to our memories

A good friend of mine from the school run (who I don't chat to often enough!) shared some bad news with me today.  Sadly, her grandmother has died.  I really felt for her today and wanted to give her a big hug, but as it was the middle of the playground, and it was raining, I didn't - but maybe I should have anyway.

Coincidentally, I have been thinking a lot about one of my own grandmothers this last few days.  She died many years ago now, but I still think of her often and she is still a big part of my life, even though she isn't around.  I have been musing about how important matriarchs are in our families - but that's another post!

For today, I'll just share my latest recipe.  They say that the sense of taste is linked with memory - for me this is so true.  Anyone who has read Nigel Slater's book Toast will know how vividly he describes his childhood through food.  For me, I have certain foods which instantly take me to a feeling I had, an era I lived in, or a person I knew.

I have been searching in vain for the perfect recipe to recreate the cake I used to eat at my Nanna's house.  Just imagining the taste of Mr Kipling's Manor House cake, with its crunchy sugary topping and juicy sultanas, transports me instantly to my Nanna's living room and her china, her tea cups and the love I felt when I was around her.  So recently I have been on a quest to recreate this cake.

Here's my latest effort.  Very nice cake, but nothing like the exalted Mr Kipling Manor House.  Too dark, too dry in texture, and too much mixed spice! I will keep searching!!
Good Housekeeping Farmhouse Sultana Cake   
Does anyone else have a food they associate with a loved one?

1 comment:

  1. Ginger Parkin with my Ayunty. She died over 20 years ago, but she made the best parkin ever