Hello. My name is Jules and I live in the frozen north (Scotland). I grew up eating a mixture of traditional ’80s food like Sara Lee gateau, spaghetti bolognese and Fray Bentos pies, with the occasional Jamaican recipe thrown in (sweet potato pudding, oxtail, rice and peas).
I have now combined my guilty pleasure of reading children’s books and cooking. In the spare minutes I get after my busy job I’m either drawing, cooking or writing my children’s book….and dreaming about owning a field of chickens!
Feel free to share any of my recipes or use any of my photos provided there is a link back and/or proper crediting is given.
About this blog…
When I was 7, I broke our portable black and white TV. From that moment Sesame Street and Neighbours had disappeared from my afternoon ritual. I was going to have to find something else to do. After experimenting with being outdoorsy, attempting to become the first ever rock-Recorder pop star and a Fimo jewellery designer I decided to take up the less taxing option of – reading.
It was cheap and easy and there was a library down the road which I could get to with a bit of running the gauntlet across a busy main road.
The books in this tiny library were worn and smelt of must and formaldehyde, both of which became addictive. It’s taken almost 30 years to realise it, but the bit I loved the most about all these books was when they started talking about food.
There was obviously the Enid Blyton books, full of ginger beer, lashings of various sugary claggy spreads smeared on thick slices of toast. Then the zany Dr Seuss classics with ‘green eggs and ham’. Strega Noga and her magical pot of pasta that overflows and floods the town, scared me more than the Terminator films at the time. Stone Soup I adored and am still fond of broths where you can see bits floating around – although I’ve yet to find one with an igneous rock in it. Judy Corbalis’ Oscar and the Ice Pick – probably the loveliest book I have ever read – has its finale in a palace made of ice-cream bricks. And not just any ordinary ice-cream – chips and hamburger flavoured ice cream; tandoori chicken ice cream and the deadly belladonna nightshade ice cream – the ice cream that will help the Controller take over the world. Ingenious really. Think of the damage you could do just after lunch if you put mind altering drugs in a Twix. Then there’s the obvious snozzcumber sandwiches, giant peaches and Whipple-Scrumptious Fudgemallow Delights of Roald Dahl. The miserable attempt of the British Dental Association’s warnings against tooth decay , with its tantalising land of sweets and cakes in “Jerry Gibbs and the Magic Toothbrush”. The entire Asterix and Obelix series was a wonderland of European cooking – plum wines and magic potions, roast boar, warm beer, explosive cheese, Massila fish stew and corsican sausages. Then there was the overflowing, billowy, batter of In the Night Kitchen (Maurice Sendak) and then the clouds of puffy, pillowy, dough which could feed the entire inhabitants of Richard Scarry’s world.
The realisation of my early literary gluttony only occurred five years ago when a Jesuit priest and leading Astrophysicist – who I was chaperoning around Jodrell Bank telescope – told me that the reason why there was so much food in children’s books was because it was a type of pornography. Children’s books were addictive because they had been injected with jam and covered in clotted cream. It was more interesting that he had had time to come to this conclusion during his thinking about meteorites and outer space – but he too loved the imaginatory foods he feasted on from his childhood stories.
And so this blog is a combination of two passions; childrens’ books and food – as I attempt to cook my literary past.
- Green Eggs & Ham
- Mock Turtle Soup (Alice & Wonderland)
- Golden Goldilocks Porridge
- Strega Noga Pasta
- Gingerbread waffle house (Hansel & Gretel)
- Black Ice-Cream (Oskar & the Ice-Pick)
- Heidi Fondue & Goat’s Milk
- Sardines on toast (The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe)
- Marmalade Sandwiches (Paddington Bear)
- Amelia Bedelia’s Apple Pie
- Bee Bread (The City of Dreaming Books)
- Roast Wild Boar (Asterix & Obelix)
- Blackbird Pie (Made with chicken’s feet – not blackbirds!)
- Roly Poly Pudding (The Tale of Samuel Whiskers)
- Elevenses (Winnie the Pooh & The Hobbit)
- Ratty’s Picnic (Cold tongue, cold ham, cold beef, pickled gherkins, salad, french rolls, cress sandwidges, potted meat, ginger beer, lemonade, soda water – The Wind in the Willows)
- Stone Soup (Igneous, sandstone, limestone and meteorite soups)
- Mince & Quince (The Owl and the Pussycat)
- Jewel’s marvellous medicine (A combination of favourite things…Passoa, Calpol, candifloss, passion fruits, sherbert fizz, oranges, limes and grand marnier)
- Mountains of Turkish Delight
- Kenny Bear’s Big Breakfast (Richard Scarry)
- Magic Noodles (Ponyo)
….and a few more as I dig out the children’s books from the attic…feel free to list your favourites.