When it comes to buying groceries we have a set routine in our house. As we run out of things we write them on the fridge with a whiteboard marker and then before we make a trip to the supermarket one of us takes a picture of said list with our phone. Usually the Silver Fox likes to be the photographer as this means he can direct the shopping along strategic lines - apparently I have an "inefficient approach" in terms of tackling a shopping list. Pfft. My way gets me more exercise.
Anyway, I was adding "red pepper" to the list last night when I looked at the rest of the items written their and had one of those moments where you realise you've come quite a long way. To understand what I mean, you probably need to see the list:
the blood of a virgin
sun dried tomatoes
As I looked at the list I realised that never again would I be someone who was content to eat chicken nuggets.
When I recall what my diet has looked like in the past it doesn't bear much relationship to the list above. When I was in my early twenties and living in London, my shopping list looked like
instant mashed potato
As I worked in a pub kitchen I would supplement this diet with microwaved chilli con carne and baked potatoes but literally weeks could pass where I ate little other than what was on that list. And bizarrely despite an almost complete lack of exercise I was as skinny as I have ever been. I have no idea how that works but if I ever figure it out I'm sure I will be able to retire off the proceeds of my book / kitchenware line / jaffa cake endorsement deal.
As it stands my tastes have gradually become a bit more "mature". I haven't gone near a packet of instant noodles in years and there's a reason I have some much unused packet soup. I am now the kind of person who makes soup (leek and potato being my specialty).
But looking at the grocery list this week certainly brought it home. In some ways this is great. I have an appreciation for the finer things in life. We sometimes get our cheese from a cheesemonger. Our meat is not from a supermarket but an actual butcher. Having grown up eating some form of mince every night for tea I now appreciate how much choice I have and the Silver Fox's culinary skills are such that eating is usually a very satisfying experience. We're not sauteing things in truffle oil or nibbling at caviar crudites but, I think I pay more attention to the quality of what I eat now than I did in the past.
Do you feel your approach to food has changed over the years? Were you as dependent as I was in my youth on highly processed stuff? Is there a point at which you just get too old to be living on chicken nuggets?
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