Family Values, Food, Sunday Special No 3

Family values If you look at the heading to this blog, you will see it refers to ranting, and my experiences. This is not a rant, merely observation from experience. I sometimes wonder if women realise how much effect they can have on a family, alleviating problems and giving it support. I have experienced both within our extended family and in my own case, that broken homes seriously affect the psychology and outlook of the children, either at the time, or permanently. In my own family, I have seen two women, my grandmother and my wife, who were the fulcrum to the wider family, both at times of hardship, and times of joy. It was they who communicated to, and kept the whole family informed with the result that the family was banded as an entity.

Another aspect of broken families is that often, the children of a broken home can’t wait to get married. There seems to be a need for close companionship, perhaps making up lost ground. This doesn’t mean that they want to marry the first person who come along, nor that they won’t discriminate, merely that the urge to be encompassed in the warmth of a close family is paramount. I was married at 22, as a result of circumstances which meant that I would have to go away to sea for several years. In fact this draft didn’t materialise and now I have been married for almost 63 years.

I find the circumstances of cohabitation rather than marriage to be strange. I discover that others can quote similar circumstances when I raise the subject of people who have been living together for a number of years, decide to get married, and then break up shortly after. Try as I may, I cannot come up with a sensible construction for this condition. Trial cohabitation, today, seems to be prevalent, and I suspect is one of the reasons why marriages occur later in life. In my case, Sophie and I find that the great advantage, that we have over some of our friends, is that in marrying young, we are seeing and have seen three generations of children arriving and growing-up in all their stages, and the cohesion engendered is evidence of the fact that extended families give constant stimulation – providing they get on.

Food Everyone else seems to be talking and writing about food so I see no reason why I shouldn’t also . I can just imagine quite a few of you will switch off now, and understandably, I cannot believe how many programmes on television are devoted to the subject. However, as you may have gathered from things I’ve written I have had to run the house for several months now and there have naturally been problems due to ignorance and lack of planning, with the result that some of the food had, in the end, to be something quick and easy. The following dish I have only seen in two houses.

My grandmother used to make a very fast dish we called ‘egg tomato and cheese’ for obvious reasons. It has always been tasty, cheap and very quick to make. One merely opens a tin of crushed tomatoes and includes half of one of plum tomatoes, all to go later with 4 eggs. The tomatoes are placed in a fairly large frying pan, and the liquid reduced for about 10 minutes. Then one cracks the eggs onto the tomatoes and continues to cook until the whites are reasonably well cooked, then the whole top is coated with grated cheese and the pan put under a grill until it is deemed that the yolks are hard and that the cheese is thoroughly brown. The real trick is to remember where the eggs were, after they’ve been hidden by the cheese, – the handle is quite a guide. The actual proportions depend upon need and preference, the above is a meal for 2. and is so simple even I can cook it.

Categorized as General

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