Culinary Memories

As I’ve already said here before, I am not a very good housewife. I am, shall we say, domestically challenged. However, I absolutely love cooking. I enjoy mixing together different flavours. I love coming up with new tastes. I find joy in sourcing good quality ingredients.

I recently purchased some cookery books, one of which my mum has had since I was a child, and flicking through it I found many of the recipes that evoke my childhood. What a pleasure to sit and read, and allow my taste buds to remember!  One recipe in particular, Apple Custard Pie,  as I read down the list of ingredients (apples, yoghurt, honey, cinnamon, vanilla) I could actually feel the texture in my mouth, and catch the scent of its warm sweetness.  I find it astonishing that the act of reading a recipe can have such a  sensory reaction.

Anyway, here are a few of the ingredients that I purchased today so I can get to stirring, boiling, peeling, baking, chopping, and trying out a whole host of recipes both known and much cherished, as well as those new and experimental.


Sea Salt


Pair of Onions




What recipe evokes your early years for you?  Do you enjoy cooking, and if you do, do you prefer to cook from a recipe or would you rather make it up as you go along?  What’s your most vivid culinary memory?


March 15, 2008. Creativity.


  1. diane replied:

    Now Amy, confess: you just bought those ingredients because they were so visually stunning!

  2. mrschili replied:

    MMMMMM! Pistachios!

    I have no real “early years” culinary memories. The biological was a terrible cook, and most of what we ate came from cans or boil-in bags. *shudder!*

    I, however, LOVE to cook, and it’s one of the few things that I’m consistently good at. I LOVE my spaghetti sauce, and one of my favorite comfort foods is vanilla rice pudding. My motto in the kitchen is that it doesn’t have to be complicated and difficult to be wonderful – as a matter of fact, almost all of my favorite things to make (and to eat!) are what I call “stupid easy.” As a matter of fact, I’m considering opening a new blog devoted to my favorite recipes and calling it just that. Maybe I’ll do that this afternoon!

    Thanks, Amy!

  3. diane replied:

    Serious response:

    Best memory is baking chocolate chip cookies with Mom.
    Love the smell of vanilla.
    When I was little, we occasionally had pancakes for an evening meal as a treat(which appalled my husband when we were first married. He needs meat!).
    Once we can get “real” tomatoes, rather than the cardboard-tasting ones of winter, we have BLTs for sandwich suppers.
    Mom was afraid of her old-style pressure cooker and would use a long-handled fork to release steam. Consequently, I have never owned one.
    I no longer enjoy the very sweet candies of my youth but adore dark chocolate.

  4. Despil replied:

    Domestically challenged! I love that 🙂
    A friend of mine calls hereself just like that. Although she is a bit more challenged, when she got a recipe for some indian food from a friend number 10 on the list was:

    – Buy ingredients BEFORE you start to cook.

    And all she said: My friend knows me.

    On another note: you made me drool, now I have to go and eat something.

  5. amypalko replied:

    Well, you know, Diane, I couldn’t ever imagine buying food that I didn’t find visually stimulating! Oh, and unfortunately I never lost that sweet tooth, hence the tablet addiction 🙂

    I completely agree, Mrschili, that some of the best recipes are the least complicated ones. It’s all in getting the best, freshest ingredients that you can, isn’t it?

    Yes, Despil, buying the ingredients prior to cooking them is always recommended 😉

  6. mrschili replied:

    There! I went and did it! Thanks for the inspiration!

  7. amypalko replied:

    I’ve subscribed, Mrschili! Your Vanilla Rice Pudding has my mouth watering 🙂

  8. Zhu replied:

    Domestically challenged as well 😉

    I can cook stuffs but… not the great housewife. Any Italian dish reminds me of my childhood. That’s what I cook best too. My raviolis are pretty good I must say!

    Mum was pretty busy, the great cook of the family is still my grandma… can’t beat her!

  9. Penelope Anne replied:

    My mom did not cook often so my favorite childhood memory food came from a box.

    A perfectly baked pie takes me back to grandma though.

    I love to cook, but only use a recipe as a base line, I love to play with flavor and spices to create meals.

    I sort of collect cookbooks and recipes.

    My youngest son wants to be a chef in fact.

  10. kacey replied:

    Oh, yum. Great ingredients!

    Hm, favorite recipes. Apple Pie. Pot Roast and homemade noodles. Cinnamon rolls. Oatmeal cookies.

  11. Graham replied:

    You have some wonderful ingredients here. Mmmmmmmm!!! It is funny, but I enjoy reading recipe books as much as I do cooking. I love food from all nations, but am particularly fond of traditional British cooking.

    One of my fondest memories of Stirling is eating one of the very best dishes of “Haggis, Tatties and Neeps”…. Awww I wish I was back there now.

  12. amypalko replied:

    Good to know I’m not the only one, Zhu 😉

    I’m also a bit of a collector when it comes to cookery books, Penelope Anne. Actually, come to think of it, I’m a collector of all kinds of books!

    They all sound delicious, Kacey 🙂

    Graham, I just noticed what looks like a very tasty recipe for Bread and Butter Pudding on your blog. You can’t get more British than that in the kitchen, and it looks completely divine.

  13. captainstardust replied:

    looking at these i’d say scotland must have the most extraordinary quality of light in the world. but then i know the eye of the photographer is just as crucial. really flawless images.

    i have been cooking lately too… spent all of saturday scrubbing up the kitchen and reorganising the cupboards so i could start cooking properly again. i’ll have to think about photographing food too, especially if that is going to be a focal point of my blog-to-be!

  14. amypalko replied:

    I took all the photos in my kitchen, Captain Stardust, which has patio doors that let a lot of light in. Perfect for taking photos in! I am so looking forward to your new blog. Do let me know when it’s up and running 🙂

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