A few years ago we couldn’t move for brioche buns and pulled pork. Then Hawaiian poke was everywhere for a while.
But sometimes we just want the good old comfort food of our childhood, like a fish-finger sandwich with mushy peas, a rice pudding, a bowl of cereal or a warming corned beef hash.
A slew of restaurants are cashing in on our desire to return to more simple culinary times.
At the heart of London’s trendy Exmouth Market is a restaurant devoted to serving 1970s nostalgia food such as ham, egg and chips, cheese and pineapple and prawn cocktail, and we only have to look at one of the many food-related TV shows currently on our screens to see that harking back food-wise is all the rage.
But you don’t need to go the whole retro hog and don a velvet jumpsuit or stick cocktail umbrellas in everything that sits still to enjoy the benefits of the current passion for retro food.
As commute times get longer (Office for National Statistics figures show 3.7m workers travel for two hours or longer every weekday), and families spend less time together, it becomes more important that our food preparation doesn’t take all evening.
We can’t all have a giant oven steaming away in the corner all day. Moreover, particularly these days, none of us wants to spend a small fortune on ingredients our kids will most likely turn their noses up at.
Sometimes the simple things can be the most effective. After all, who genuinely yearns for a plate of curated pickles when they’re ill? We’re more likely to reach for the food of our youth to comfort us in times of crisis.
You also don’t have to compromise on quality to enjoy a trip down memory lane. Princes Corned Beef is made from 100 per cent beef and is so versatile it can form the basis of a whole range of hearty, nostalgic dishes.
Whether corned beef hash has you remembering teatimes at your grandmother’s or whether you’re fondest of a corned beef pan haggerty just how your mum used to make it, this store-cupboard staple is part of a resurgence of love for good, simple foods like we used to have.
Go mad for easy and convenient corned beef potato cakes, fritters, which take ten minutes to prepare, or a quirky take on chilli.
Or, simply crack out a tin on the annual freezing family winter picnic and enjoy with hard-boiled eggs and slightly too-hot tea, just for old time’s sake.
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