/ Food & Drink

Beef dripping, anyone? Let’s reminisce our forgotten foods

A BBC article about getting forgotten foods back on the table grabbed my attention. It made me wonder which foods we’ve cast aside, and whether there’s anything from the past we’d like to reheat.

The journalist in the article mentioned black pudding made from fresh blood – they apparently use a dried blood mixture these days as it’s easier to transport.

Others lamented the difficulty of finding foods from their childhoods. Some mentioned ‘Gipsy tart’, ‘cows udders served warm with brown bread and butter’ and ‘proper beef dripping sold from trays’.

Others missed ‘barley port wine gruel’, ‘Titbit brown sauce made by Fletchers’ and ‘Black Bun’; a dense fruit cake eaten on Hogmanay.

Penny sweets – now only £1

It got me thinking about my diet when I was younger. At first, I had trouble remembering what I ate growing up in the 70s and 80s, and I certainly couldn’t remember anything I felt a real nostalgia for. That’s apart from penny sweets; but you can still buy these, even though they no longer cost a penny.

My colleagues told me they missed popping candy, but you can still get this (and it’s a favourite of Heston Blumenthal). They also mentioned ‘Oink crisps’ (hollow pig shaped bacon crisps) as well as other brands of sweets and crisps, potato waffles and Findus crispy pancakes.

Still, much of what we remembered is still around but we just choose not to eat it anymore.

Leave some food in the past

It was actually much easier for me to remember the things I definitely don’t miss – the milk we were made to drink at school that had been sitting around and had a thick layer of cream on the top, or the school dinners of rubbery liver and spam – yuk!

So tell me – what foods do you miss from your childhood and want to see back? And which ones are you glad to see the back of?


Count Dracula ice creams

HP Original Sauce and not the watered down “Original” sauce you get now.


Small chocolate Easter eggs with a delicious pink interior sold by Woolworths.


Anyone remember ‘Toastie toppers’? I’m quite glad to see the back of them! Awful weird paste that you spread on toast – blergh.

I really miss the magic ice cream sauce that you’d melt in the microwave (or in a warm pan of water) then pour onto the ice cream – when you poured it back on it would set rock-solid, giving you crispy chocolate bits in the shape of your ice cream. Can’t for the life of me remember what it was called, but it was amazing!


Probably for the best – I remember opening a half-used tube of the microwave chocolate sauce and finding neon yellow fluff breeding inside. Certainly put me off it.


That magic ice cream sauce still exists in Asda!


Mothers Pride white sliced bread is something I would rather forget from my childhood. It was often all that was available from the baker’s van. No doubt other white sliced bread was/is as bad, but eating Mothers Pride put me off white bread for life. Someone must have liked it.


One of my earliest memories is being administered cod liver oil by my mother, on the basis of its nutritional benefits. It tasted revolting, as anyone who has chewed a cod liver oil capsule will know. I see that the liquid is still available, though goodness knows why.


I’ve never liked fat, meat from identifiable body parts, or offal (perhaps for the same reason), but I recall both sets of grandparents serving up “horrors”. My step-grandfather was a butcher and would eat a slice of solid fat in preference to lean, or his favourite – Bath chaps. My other grandfather liked stuffed heart for Sunday lunch.

My grandmother cooked on a coal-fired Aga and made wonderful bread. Unfortunately, she was not the best cook in all respects and made her rice pudding using flaked rice which, for some strange reason, she cooked overnight in the cooling Aga. By the morning, the milk had curdled and soured, and the rice had the consistency of wallpaper paste. Of course, this wasn’t for breakfast – we had the pleasure of waiting for this to be served for tea.


Ugh…cod liver oil ( for its superior health benefits), was to
substitute a more palatable Waterbury’s Compound AND the
Seven Seas capsule version.

When doing sports, consumed a lot of Glaxo’s so-called glucolin,
I think, finely powdered sucrose dissolved in water for instant

Biscuits: Huntley & Palmers, Peak Freans (sp?) ecetera.

And both Ovaltine and Milo and, of course, Horlicks.