Sunday, 27 February 2011

In her day...

My Mother, in her day, was amazing.


Lucy and Lissy, January 1976

She is sick.

I am trying, very hard, to ensure that I recall all of the good memories that I can of her, from my childhood.

To write it all down.

In her day, my Mum was everything I aspire to be.

She ran a home with love, and cooked for a family of seven.

She was, in her day, an exceptional and classically trained cook.

She was so ahead of her time. She was audacious and clever and inventive. All on a very tight budget.

A restraining economy which I know frustrated her, but became a driver behind her culinary imagination.

When I look back, and recall her, in her day, I am so very proud. All of her friends, and mine, were in awe of her food. It was sensational. She had an enviable reputation of being able to cook amazing dishes with such abundance and flavour. People clamoured to stay for weekends, just to be fed by my Mum.

My father would ring her with just an hours notice, to tell her he was bringing influencial clients home for dinner. She would slide into corporate entertaining mode on a picnic budget, and she did it with calmness, grace and an even temper that now, now I have a family of my own, simply astounds me.

From the glamour of the 1970's dinner party to the hum drum of packed lunches, she was forever inventive and resourceful. She had a love of food and an innate sense of how to create gourmet and sustenance alike, from scratch.

I have no doubt that she called upon her Australian roots. This recipe, I found, is so similar to what I now know to be a "hedgehog slice". It was produced near weekly in our kitchen. Quickly, as she did a million other jobs, to ensure no waste, to ensure a little delicious for us.

This recipe was the fodder of all afternoon teas at my home my youth.

It calls for all the broken bits of plain (boring) biscuits that get left and uneaten in the bottom of a biscuit tin. Re-styled to become something quite treaty and indulgent.

 

Lissy's Broken Biscuit Cake Recipe
 



















I made this with my children, yesterday. I rang my Mum and told her. In her evening, she is vague.

But in her day, she will be glad, I hope.


45 comments:

  1. I love this picture Lucy. Your Mum sounds amazing, even if things are quite the same as they were. Loving the biscuit idea, we grew up with a biscuit tin in our house but I don't have one? I wonder why? I think I may have to change that just for the Broken Biscuit Cake.

    Gorgeous post.

    Kirstyx

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  2. Beautiful post Lucy. After meeting you and reading this about your Mum I reckon I can see where you get your resourcefulness from. She sounds wonderful xx

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  3. Liss@frillsinthehillsFebruary 27, 2011

    I simply adore this post. ADORE. Firstly I think recounting the history of your life like this is SO important. Secondly I just love that recipe card and lastly nbecause my Mum was that mum people scrambled to be fed by and these days I am that kind of Mum too - that is how I resemble my Mum the most... AND I'm a Lissy too ;)

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  4. You mother does sound amazing. What beautiful memories to have and share. Peace and strength to you Lucy, this must be a very difficult time, xx

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  5. Our old one was a three layered enamel tin, in a dubious green colour. Yhe base tin was deeper, for cake. I hated it at the time, but now of course have a hankering for one the same...

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  6. Thanks B. She is so poorly. I am struggling to reconcile my memories to the present. But shall write more down. Hopefully I can connect the dots. xx

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  7. www.giftsofserendipity.comFebruary 27, 2011

    What wonderful gifts your Mum has given you Lucy.
    The capacity to be positive in times that are trying, resourcefulness, persistence, creativity and a nurturing soul at the heart of it all.

    There is also the gift of recipes and traditions which will sustain you and your own family which truly is a gift which keeps on giving.

    Thank you for sharing this beautiful, heartfelt post and the recipe is one which I think might make for the basis of a fun shared experience with my own family today.

    Big hug dear one,

    Felicity

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  8. Thank you Liss. I had an inkling this would resonate. It's what we should do, instictively, I think -look for resemblances, rather than fret over faults?

    Can you imagine the hundreds of cards: aged, faded and slighly splattered cards, that I am gathering? I have my grandmothers too - all handwritten (and largely illegible to me.) And now Lissy's, all typed with imperial care...

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  9. Thanks Christie. I feel better now I am remembering the good. She may not be around for much lomger. Or she may have another ten years. I need to keep the essense of her front of mind.

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  10. So beautiful, it brings a tear to my eye. What a lovely and amazing Mum you have. Now I understand where you get it from. xx

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  11. Kirsty (Coffee, Cake and Sunday)February 27, 2011

    Nawww Lucy. What a gorgeous post. Your mum has gumption I think. Sending you big hugs xx

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  12. So beautiful Lucy. Written with such love.
    And in yet another way you and me, we are on the same page. There is hedgehog in our biscuit tin. xxx

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  13. melissa @ suger coat itFebruary 27, 2011

    This is lovely. Just lovely.

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  14. Oh hon, this was such a beautiful post. She would be so very, very proud. Her legacy is thriving and that's what it is all about, surely!

    I am going to make this recipe this afternoon and think of your mother and very proudly chill my slice in the 'Frigidaire'. x

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  15. Make sure you use "good butter"! (I have asked her about that before. We lived in dairy country. Apparently butter bought from the farm was "good" and from the shop was "poor" - water added to it or something?)

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  16. I am so glad I have begun this. Thanks largely to you and your encouragement. There is so much more. SO much more good stuff. I am hoping, as you know, that the good will begin to counteract the bad and sad. xxx

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  17. In her day, she did have gumption. She was not without coping mechanisms, but cope she did. xx

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  18. Oh Shelley, it's so complicated. In her day she was amazing. Not so much now - if I am honest, our relationship is now torturous at times. Hene I need to really concentrate on how she was.

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  19. Felicity, my brothers tell me that I am so like her. I find it hard to see it. I am aware all the time that I should appreciate the gifts, not dwell on the negatives.

    Thank you. xx

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  20. sofrenchysochicFebruary 27, 2011

    So sorry to hear your mum is unwell. This is a truly beautiful post honouring her. The likeness between you is unbelievable, both in looks and your description of her. All the best.
    x Annie

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  21. She has been really unwell for a long time now. It has made me very angry. I am trying to let go of the anger and replace it with more positive emotions. We do look alike, in features. I am only just beginning to see this. xx

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  22. Kelley @ magnetoboldtoo.comFebruary 27, 2011

    She sounds so much like my Nanna.

    When you are a kid you just don't realise how amazing these women are, hey?

    I am sure your mum would be overjoyed that you are continuing to make her slices, AND keeping the name she called them... Broken Biscuit Cake sounds waaaaaaay better than hedgehog slice.

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  23. And my children have renamed it again - all day today they have been asking me for some more of the "Grannies chocolate crumble cake"...

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  24. Nicole AveryFebruary 27, 2011

    Beautiful post Lucy. I am with Kelley, the broken biscuit recipe sounds way nicer than hedgehog!

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  25. We are on the same page.

    As you were commenting here, I am over at yours, telling you about my cereal muffin adaptation!

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  26. Sorry to hear of your mom's illness. She sounds incredible. Inventive and resourceful, she sounds timeless.

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  27. Sounds like you will have lots more amazing memories and recipes to share. :)

    I'm sure your mum will be glad in her day too

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  28. I am really sorry to hear this. Sounds like you're doing her proud.

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  29. Thank you. It feels like that. I am trying to make the good stuff timeless, for myself, and for my children.

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  30. You got it. I have a series of them, all bouncing in my head....

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  31. Catch the KidsFebruary 27, 2011

    What lovely thoughts. Your Mum would be pleased. This recipe sounds delicious and I'm going to try it with my kids.

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  32. Lucy!!! I want to be with you right now just to give you a huge hug. xxx

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  33. I'm glad. Thank you.

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  34. Ahhh Thea. Too far. Just too far. xxx

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  35. Love this! Am spending the weekend with my mother who is 90 so I get your feelings as much as another can. Sweet.
    Sandra

    Healthier and Wealthier
    http://reallifeinaminute.blogspot.com

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  36. Beautiful post Lucy & I definitely have to try your recipe.

    I have to say as well, oh my goodness does Olivia look like you!!

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  37. Really? For the life if me I cannot see it! xx

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  38. I love this photo of you and your Mum...you remind of the first time you came to Australia and visited us...I guess you were about that age!! Lovely thoughts of your Mum!! Stuff I did not know and great to read it. xx

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  39. Ahhh, Fiona. It WAS that trip just after we stayed with you. 1976, just after your birthday! In Grannies formal room. Better these lovely thoughts than the others. xxx

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  40. Thanks for sharing this recipe and your fond memories of your mum. I've saved the recipe because it looks so easy that even I might be able to pull it off.

    Stopping by from the Rewind.

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  41. They look scrumptious (and frugal!). I love that the recipe is on an 'index' card. My Grandma used to have those and I think Mum has some too. Thanks for Rewinding (keep these positive thoughts about your Mum.) x

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  42. Lovely post Lucy!

    Visiting from the Rewind.

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