Wednesday, 28 November 2018

100 Years of Food - 1970s

Sue quoted someone called Heston Blumenthal as having said the 70s were the decade that good food forgot. She said the big things that came along were pasta dishes, powdered mashed potatoes (brand name Smash), tinned chow mein and something called Angel Delight (think Jello instant pudding mix in strawberry and banana flavours). The humble quiche was also fashionable in Britain. 

At my house we ate Kraft's macaroni and "cheese" that came in a box (4 for $1!), but not much spaghetti and meat balls. We did have powdered potatoes a lot, with loads of margarine. Mom did buy cans of chow mein and water chestnuts, instant white rice and packages of crispy noodles, but then she'd spend half a day making garlic frittered chicken from scratch and my mouth still waters at the memory. We never once had quiche at our house though. 

I'm thinking that this particular fashion didn't hit Oklahoma until the 1980s. I never attempted to make one until the early 90s, because it featured in The Tightwad Gazette. Quiche is everywhere in cafes over here in Britain, not anything fancy at all, and men eat it without worrying in the least about their masculinity. Does anyone else remember some idiotic book about 'Real Mean Don't Eat Quiche'?

I'm thinking Sue offered us several things for the 1970s, but the only one that made a photograph or my notes was the Angel Delight. Which I happen to quite like. My photo is very sad being as how I was stingy in my portions of desserts. 

Pink stuff is Angel Delight.


Jean | said...

Shelley, when I read about the convenience foods that were available during my childhood, I usually have never had them and often, as with that "pink stuff," have never heard of them. My mother was an excellent and creative cook who was also into "health food," so she avoided the packaged foods filled with chemicals.

Shelley said...

Jean - One of Bill's favourite things to do in the States is to go to Wal*Mart and look at the incredibly calorie-laden options in the frozen foods. Some of them make Scotland's fried Mars Bars look like a healthy option. My mom wasn't so much into 'healthy' as she was 'frugal' and 'creative'. That said, my Dad always struggled with his weight, so she was often looking for frugal and low-calorie, which must have been quite a challenge. I feel lucky that I grew up liking vegetables and fruit, though it was a stupid number of years before I learned to cook from 'ingredients' like she did.

Unknown said...

In addition to Angel Delight you could also get Instant Whip which was a cheaper version. We were treated to AD on special occasions but otherwise had to make do with IW.

Shelley said...

Vivien - I'm not sure I've run into Instant Whip, but then I don't look around much in the desserts section other than during the Holiday season.

Unknown said...

Instant Whip apparently stopped being manufactured in 2004. See: