Entertaining The Old Fashioned Way


In years gone by people didn’t entertain nearly as much as they do now. The rich did, but of course, they had servants, people who we called ‘in service’ back then.

Most of the time we had guests over it was in the summer so the children could play outside and we could use the outdoor oven. Regardless of the season it would be well planned and everyone would bring something towards the meal.

On the occasions where people did come over to the cottage in winter it would be quite simple food, much like what we had on a day to day basis but we would use the best dishes and put on our Sunday clothes to show we had made an effort. It would usually be a roast dinner if we were eating indoors, whatever meat we had or could get at a reasonable price.

Brisket of beef was a very cheap cut, as was chine of beef but cooked properly, and very slowly, the flavour was bootiful (beautiful). There would be plenty of vegetables to go with it, and hopefully leftovers to make a soup or stew the next day.


If we were having a garden meal there would be lots of salad and skillet grilled chicken cooked on the outdoor range. Guests would bring a bit of home cured ham or some sausages and that would be the basis of the meal. There was often lots of soft fruits coming ripe and I would put aside all the softer ones to make a summer pudding which everyone loved.

I don’t know if you have summer pudding there. Its very simple to make and uses up all the older, dry bread you may have laying around.

  • Put all the berries in a pan with a little honey and bring to the boil. Simmer for a minute or two and leave to stand.
  • Cut the bread into slices if it’s not a sliced loaf, ours was always homemade so it was never sliced until we wanted to eat it. Anyway, dip the sliced bread into the juice in the saucepan and press it into the bottom of a lightly buttered pudding bowl. Don’t soak it, just swish one side through the juice and that’s it, it’s alright if it’s dry on the inside as long as the side touching the bowl is juiced.
  • Do this all around the sides as well until the bowl is covered in bread.
  • Sieve the softened fruit and put it in the bowl on top of the bread. Add fresh strawberries if you have them. Never put the strawberries in the pan as they will go all mushy, okay for jam but not for summer pudding.
  • When the bowl is full coat more bread and put on the top. The top layer of bread should stand a little proud of the rim of the bowl.
  • Put a plate on the top and something heavy on the plate and leave it somewhere cool for a few hours.

Turn out onto a plate just before you want to eat it and serve with a little clotted cream. What a delight, bootiful, all the flavours of summer and it saves the stale bread going to waste.

We made our own clotted cream, do you do that over in America? It’s really easy, ‘specially if you have raw milk, that makes the best cream in the world, and the best butter. Let me know if you want the recipe and I’ll send it over.

My mouth is watering now. I think I’ll get one of the kids to bring over some berries and make one of those. Even Skinny Ginny…that’s the granddaughter that’s always on a diet, can’t moan about that pudding, I can have her cream if she don’t want it!

Oh well, better get on. I’m going to school this afternoon, getting picked up by the headmaster no less. They are running craft sessions in the school holidays for the children and they have asked me to go and show them the basics of crochet, fancy that, me teaching the children.

I think it’s good that the kids learn some of the old ways you know, it’s a funny old world and one day some of it might come in handy.

by Granny Spear

Granny Spear was born in a small cottage in Devon, Southern England in 1925. Married to farm labourer Ernest, she raised her family in the heart of the countryside without any of the amenities we rely on today. Using skills passed down from her mother, who had learned those same skills from her mother, she not only survived but positively thrived living a self-sufficient, off grid lifestyle. Outliving her husband, one of her children and two of her grandchildren she stayed in the cottage until 2003 when a serious fall saw her hospitalized. She now lives with her daughter just four miles from her old home. For her 89th birthday her grandchildren and great grandchildren brought her an iPad, which she instantly rejected until they showed her Angry Birds…After much persuasion she has agreed to share some of her knowledge with us about what she calls the ‘old days’

The Lost Ways is a comprehensive book that teaches you a variety of ways that our forefathers used to deal with different situations.Have you ever prepared food without using the shop ingredients? I bet no. this guide will teach you how to make a delicious and nutritious meal using the basic ingredients that are not sold in commercial stores. Moreover, the guide teaches survival mechanism in the absence of the modern antibiotics. Other people will definitely turn to you during this time.Watch the video:

lost way JPG(1)

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

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