In Adelaide in the 1950s, my grandmother was our family cook, turning out such standards as shepherd’s pie, lamb chops, and apple pie and custard.
She cooked tripe (see above) in white sauce as a treat. I liked it.
You don’t see tripe (in this case, the lining from a beastie’s second stomach, the reticulum) in your local butcher any more.
It’s something you have to order in advance.
Tripe is associated with working class northern England nostalgia – flat caps, poverty and grime”.
An after-school favourite was a South Australian specialty, jubilee cake.
This was a teacake with dried fruit, which was iced and sprinkled with coconut. Sliced and buttered it was the best cake in the world.
Her cooking now seems plain, but unlike many people in the world at that time, she had access to quality ingredients, many of which were gathered from our Adelaide backyard.
Back then the choice in milk was simply the number of pints ladled by the milkman into our billy early each morning.
Bread was delivered by cart, too, and the greengrocer would fill an order from a large green van. Men used special tongs to carry huge, dripping blocks of ice down our gravel drive to the ice chest in the laundry.
My grandfather’s crucial contribution, other than ensuring that I sat with a straight back, was telling stories around the kitchen table.