HAVE you seen the email doing the rounds which describes the changes in our eating habits and the language of food during the past 50 years?
I’m repeating a few morsels here (with some Fisher additions) for those who don’t have access to the internet, or may have deleted the round robin as spam.
Spam, of course, was not an unwanted email all those decades ago, but a pink and flabby meat, a staple of baby-boomer diets. Robins, as far as I know, were never eaten – round, or otherwise.
Rice was never part of dinner either, but was always served as a milk pudding. Pasta hadn’t been invented in the UK, so spuds, usually boiled or mashed, filled the carb slot.
A takeaway was a hard sum – Indian restaurants were only in India, and a Big Mac was something you wore in the rain.
Barbecues? Outdoor eating was only for picnics or camping. Pizza was something to do with a leaning tower, oranges only appeared at Christmas time, and all crisps were potato flavoured.
And you can forget all those fancy dressings and creative salads: oil was for lubricating or sticking in your ears to loosen wax, while salads consisted of wet lettuce and sliced hardboiled eggs.
Sandwiches were spam, ham, jam – or cheese. No one had heard of yogurt, falafel or the other ‘exotic’ stuff we now regard as commonplace.
Pineapples only came in canned chunks but, surprisingly, muesli was around – it was called cattle feed.
A ‘nice cup of tea’ was made from leaves in a teapot and if anyone had suggested that bottling water and charging more than petrol for it would ever be acceptable, they would have been laughed out of town.
Also in my mailbox today was a query from a regular Bm@il reader (yes, there are some!) who said she was wondering whether Beck Theatre was named after Harry Beck, who designed the London Underground map.
Well, Mrs Bickle of Hillingdon, our Hayes theatre, built in 1977 by Hillingdon Council, was originally called the Alfred Beck Centre because it was funded by a bequest from a councillor of that name.
Sadly, it has no connection with Mr Beck-the-Underground.