Tuesday, May 3

Why food legacies are important

I'm not usually one to quote but his quote is one of my favourites, and comes from the god-father of slow food, Carlo Petrini:

"The greatest models of gastronomy come from women and not from chefs"

I've mentioned before that I come from a family of foodies.  Food is the common bond (apart from the obvious) in our family and we use food to show love and also we use it as a common interest.  Even in tense times (no family is perfect we all have disagreements right?) many fences are mended over making a salad, taking time out to wash the dishes or sharing a recipe everyone's enjoyed right?

Whenever I'm sick, I want my Mum.  Even though I have a husband who is wonderful when I'm sick (and not so great at reciprocating that, that's another story..) I always crave my mother's hugs, a stroke to my forehead and her cooking.  I so miss her cooking.  It's sad we live so far away from each other and I can't get that bit of comfort when I need it.

These days with my own household and trying to foster that love of food in my little frills and already they have 'favourite meals' and meals they request when they are sick. They have birthday treats and 'special meals' they like to request at special times.  

Most of these recipes aren't particularly complicated but they come from the heart and that's really what matters isn't it?  For me, that's my Mum's chicken cacciatore.  To be honest whilst I'm sick I'm sure my mother's vegemite on toast would have healing powers - she puts 'just' the right amount on.

I asked my Mum what the favourite dish of her mother (my Nan) was: 'Lambs fry and bacon - not sure what she does but it's delicious no one does it like her'.  I haven't had this yet but I think I'm going to request it now.  In this same conversation my Mum also said she has such positive associations with making pastry and dough - this she learned from her father, and he from his mother.

  'I can still to this day feel his big hands cradling mine as he taught me to knead dough'.  

I think that exact sentence will live with me always.  You guys know about how I love bread and dough.  I feel so connected to that sentence - probably a lot more than my Mum realised she relayed her own food legacy.

So my friends, even if you're not from a family of foodies, you think you're a very basic cook or don't think you have anything special to offer your children in terms of taste, process and food appreciation - you DO.  

You have an amazing opportunity to pass something down to your children - not only your favourite recipes - simple or otherwise - but as an extension of yourself - how you like food.  It could be as simple as vegemite on toast.

Do you have a favourite way your Mum does things or do your kids have one?

Psst, go over and spoil yourself or your Mum with the Lindt giveaway this month!

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12 lovely comments:

emmaO on May 3, 2011 at 8:17 AM said... [Reply to this amazing comment]

What a lovely post Liss - so very true, and something I hold close to my heart too.

Seana Smith on May 3, 2011 at 9:37 AM said... [Reply to this amazing comment]

Lovely post, Liss, and brings a tear to the eye when you talk about missing your Mum who is too far away. For us there was lots of baking too, with my Mum's shortbread, a recipe from her granny being the standout. Mum had a Be-Ro baking recipe book, Be-Ro was a type of flour then and this was a freebie. We cooked all our cakes and biscuits fromt hat recipe book and now somehow Mum found copies and gave them all to us. Coffee kisses, Victoria sponges, Battenburg cakes... the 60's and 70's are not over at our house.

Lorri on May 3, 2011 at 10:57 AM said... [Reply to this amazing comment]

A beautiful post. It made my heart ache for a different reason though. My relationship with my mum was terribly tumultuous, so I don't have those loving memories of being cared for when I was sick, nor those positive and educational cooking experiences. I loved cooking, baking in particular which I learnt from my patient young aunt (only 15years older than me). Any attempt at cooking at home was met with anger and punishment over a "huge" mess. Meals were often a mish mash of foods, under or over cooked or a huge batch of crumbed chicken tenders and nothing else...I'm only just realising that my experience wasn't the norm and am only just getting my cooking groove back thanks to friends sharing recipes via FB and from sites like yours. I'm slowly learning better cooking skills and am now sharing them with my two young daughters who also love to cook. Sorry for the long post, but thanks heaps xx

Marcia said... [Reply to this amazing comment]

Liss I loved this post!
Thank you xxx

Impish on May 3, 2011 at 12:09 PM said... [Reply to this amazing comment]

Fantastic post. Brought home so perfectly why I love cooking and baking with my daughter (who's not even 3) and what I hope to pass on: a chance of that contentment I had with my own mother. Even during those fearsome teenaged years, just hanging out in the kitchen together wordlessly could mend our bruised heart.

Chantelle {fat mum slim} on May 3, 2011 at 1:27 PM said... [Reply to this amazing comment]

Beautiful post. My mum does the vegemite just perfect too. xx

Melita on May 3, 2011 at 2:35 PM said... [Reply to this amazing comment]

So true, really lovely post.

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella on May 3, 2011 at 7:18 PM said... [Reply to this amazing comment]

Lovely post Liss! And it's so true, even the Vegemite on toast is just right!

Liss on May 3, 2011 at 9:24 PM said... [Reply to this amazing comment]

@LorriGosh Lorri, you've made me CRY. CRY I tell you. I'm glad you're starting your own legacies. Food is so much more than fuel xxx

ClaireyH on May 3, 2011 at 9:45 PM said... [Reply to this amazing comment]

My mum is a great cook and often got asked to cook for other peoples dinner parties etc. But the comment was always, 'I am cooking, get out of my kitchen'

We did have to do basic tasks as www got older, peeling veg etc, but generally we all ate good food at the table and talked as a family every night.

I have no memories of my mum cooking a cake or a meal with me and my own cooking does not resemble hers as I have really now been self taught.

I do still request her special meals for my birthday, and she does bring things when she comes to visit, the stuff I love, and she now makes the kids their favs too.

Liss on May 3, 2011 at 9:50 PM said... [Reply to this amazing comment]

@ClaireyHYou know what Claire - I can be a little like that sometimes particularly when I'm having a cook-a-thon... but as they get older I am making the conscious effort to let them cook more, just touch the food, taste it along the way, undertake basic cooking techniques like stirring, sifting, peeling etc.

Sometimes though I do need my 'therapy' and cook alone - but I'm going to relish the day my girls can cook dinner unassisted and make something delicious!

Lorri on August 3, 2011 at 11:38 PM said... [Reply to this amazing comment]

@LissHi and sorry for only replying now! I didn't realise you had replied. Thanks again for your kind words, life is great and my skills are growing all the time. Thanks and keep up the amazing effort. I (we) appreciate it. Lorri xx


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