Best of All Recipes


recipe book cover 1

I recently came into possession of this lovely old recipe book. Lovingly kept, its pages are yellowed, its cover lost, the edges tattered and torn, but on the front cover is this charming little ‘recipe.’

How to Preserve Children’s Lives

Take one large grassy field.

One half-dozen children.

Two or three small dogs.

A pinch of brook and some pebbles.

Mix children and dogs well together and put them in the field, stirring constantly. Pour the brook over the pebbles. Sprinkle the field with flowers. Spread over all a deep blue sky and bake in a hot sun. When brown remove and set to cool in a bath-tub.

Louie Fritsch

No pictures, no flashy photographs, no food stylists employed and each recipe is listed by date(?) I am grateful that it has found its way into my care, bestowed upon me by fate and I will house it in safekeeping. Simple and plain, wholesome and honest, the instructions are succinct and the outcomes traditional, salt-of-the-earth goodness. There’s potato scallops, tomato chutney, salted almonds and lamingtons. Delicious.

Recipe Book 1

Then there are a few quirky recipes. Have you ever heard of cheese bubble bread, velvet pudding, Campbell busters, kornies or matrimony tart? Well, I hadn’t and I have the recipes if you’d like them.

Recipe Book 2

Why this world-weary book is so refreshing and evocative of such strong sentiment is different for us all. But at its heart I think it touches on our human need for simplicity, tradition and history. Amid everything that flashes and blinks, whistles and beeps, the key to happiness still lies in a large grassy field filled with children and pets, next a bubbling brook and a picnic hamper filled with love.

The Best of All Recipes.

Blonde on!


Polarised Views

While on a shopping expedition with his Grandparents last weekend, my 13-year old took a serious liking to a pair of sunglasses. When he couldn’t persuade them to part with $40, he pounced on me the moment I arrived to pick him up.

“They are really good, Mum. They have rubber on the arms, so comfy and polarised lenses. Can I get them? Please? I’ll use my own money.”

I pointed out $40 was a lot of money to spend on glasses for a 13-year old, especially a week away from winter. On top of which, it’s not his birthday or even remotely close to Christmas and he hasn’t done anything worthy of a reward.

After a relentless weekend of nagging, I had dealt with every argument he could think of and stood my ground, but was thoroughly exhausted and sick of the discussion. I hoped with Monday would come the end of the battle, but as soon as he clamoured into the car after school, the nagging started again.

“Did I mention they have polarised lenses?” He asked.

Yes, I moaned disinterestedly.

“And I did a Google search and compared to some, these ones are really cheap. Some sunglasses are worth over $150. Some cost more than $300.”

Yes, I know… I lamented. Doesn’t mean I’m prepared to spend $40 on sunglasses for you.

“And…… I read people who squint a lot, because they don’t wear sunglasses, get wrinkles. When did you start wearing sunglasses cause you know you have…..”

Yes, thank you. I cut him off short, batting away the finger being pointed at my eye. Show me the picture of these magnificent glasses, I finally relented, thinking ahead to his birthday. They’re $50 bucks!!!! I cried. What happened to $40?

“They’re 20% off,” he huffed.

No! I stated bluntly. We’re not buying you any sunglasses and I don’t want to be nagged about it again. I’d reached the end of my tether.

He folded his arms and I knew I’d won; an very weary victory.

Then a little voice piped up from the far back seat. “When we were out shopping with Nanny, I found this camping chair I really liked. It was only $80 bucks… Can I get it? Please Mum. I’ll use my own money.”

**** Smacked forehead****

Blonde on!