I seem to be starting a lot of posts recently with,’when I was a child’… this is another! When I was a child we had various things we spread on bread and butter and toast, but not nearly as many as we do now. The most common I guess was jam, often homemade, often from fruit picked by the family, and marmalade of course which my dad made each January. I don’t think we had peanut butter at home when I was very young, but certainly it was around. How astonished my mum who did the shopping would have been to see all the different sorts we have now, not just smooth or crunchy, not just with different amounts of nuts, sugar, salt but different sorts of nuts – almond butter, cashew butter, and with extra additions, Marmite, coconut, vanilla, chocolate. One favourite, which is still a favourite of my husband was sandwich spread. It was very popular, salad cream with tiny pieces of vegetables of an indeterminate nature but certainly carrot. and, I’ve just found out, celery, gherkins, red peppers. This leads to Marmite, my personal favourite made from yeast extract and which first appeared in 1902. My current favourite Marmite combo is with peanut butter and banana, a great mixture of textures and flavours and I’m sure it must be good for me! One thing we never had at home which my husband can’t believe, was Bovril – a sort of meaty version of Marmite, beef extract instead of yeast. I can’t say why I don’t like it, I just don’t! Something I haven’t had for years which I presume is still made and sold, is paste – meat paste, fish paste, crab paste, sold in tiny jars and popular in sandwiches and on toast and which I think has now called spread – maybe paste wasn’t appealing. An equivalent, of sorts today would be pâté, but I noticed last time I went shopping there was only a tiny selection – maybe it is falling out of fashion. I must cruise past teh spread section of the supermarket next time I shop and see what exactly is on offer these days!


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