One evening my family and I compiled a list of foods we couldn’t stand as a child and probably still despise now. I say, ‘family’ but my daughter Sarah wasn’t included. The list would have been too long.

Her dad and I screwed our eyes shut, tensed our shoulders with our tongues protruding as the memories of bad tastes and slimy textures re-entered our minds. Sarah looked on, pouting because we refused to add courgettes and mushrooms.

To make it more fun, we decided that only items which were mutually hated would qualify for being given a mention. And so we ended up with:


Corned beef



Spotted Dick

Bread pudding

Butter beans

Broad beans

Marrowfat peas

Tin strawberries


Cold chicken swimming in jelly

Lumpy paté

Over-cooked okra

Pea & ham soup

Full fat milk

Mussels & cockles

Black pudding

Bony fish


Pigs liver

Bird’s Eye rissoles

It is very humbling to walk around a supermarket in our modern age, with the knowledge that it doesn’t matter what you don’t like because there is so much choice. The BBC T.V. programme, ‘Back in Time For Dinner’ filmed in the U.K. in 2015,  showed how just a few decades ago continental condiments and international foods were scarce and a large selection of groceries was rare, if non-existent. A few tins of some kind of animal squashed inside with salt and fat to preserve it was a common English dinner together with tasteless white bread. We also forget how modern conveniences such as refrigeration and freezing and appliances such as tumble driers and microwaves did not exist either.

So let us reflect afresh at how we describe the times we are living in. Yes they can be bad, but the **bible warns us to not pine after the good old days.

When I review our list above, I am grateful for the age in which I was born.

And in case you’re wondering, we didn’t forget Marmite – we love the stuff.


**Do not say, “Why were the old days better than these?” for it is not from wisdom that you ask about this. (Ecclesiastes 7:10)