Alright! Let’s have some fun. With a stretch ahead of us where staying at home is the cool thing to do, we decided to take a trip down memory lane. I can almost guarantee that you can attach some sort of feeling or memory to a certain dish, a snack or smell. Food does this to me all the time! Meatloaf reminds me of dinner with my grandma, and custard reminds me of my mom. For Mike it’s his grandmas spaghetti and meat balls ( with extra sauce on the side) on a Sunday night. So we decided to do a little throw back experiment and make all the dishes that we loved growing up and to see if they were as good as we remembered. So keep reading to see if the dishes got a YAY (I’ll grab it again) or a NAY (thank you, next)
So our criteria was easy, to prepare the foods we remembered getting super excited about as children and see if they bring back any memories or if they even taste as good as what we remember.
Hamburger Helper is first on the list! This was a during the week, after school kind of dinner, the kind that could fit seamlessly in between homework and hockey.
We went for one of the original recipes Beef Noodle. Immediately the aromas made us excited and we anticipated that this dish would taste as good as it smelled. It didn’t. It’s didn’t taste bad, it’s just didn’t really taste like anything except ground beef. Unfortunately I had to give this a NAY but I am not adverse to trying a different flavour.
Shake n Bake was next on the list. I remember having this a lot. Looking back, what I was mostly influenced by was the commercials, because without fail..even if I didn’t help I always exclaimed “it’s shake n bake and I helped”. Flash forward and today we would grab another box, because well, we liked the flavour and it is super easy to prepare. This one even though I don’t have a lot to say was definitely a YAY.
Old El Paso Taco Kit I am pretty sure everyone had this growing up at least once. We probably had it twice a month, so let’s just say it was in our regular rotation. Easy for mom to put together and even funner to assemble. Today I feel like the recipe has changed (cynically I have related this to the exclamation on the box that there is ‘no artificial flavours or added colours’ ) maybe for good reasons but it didn’t stir up any feelings and we had this dish often. I also wonder if I cursed it by using fancy adult 3 year old cheddar and NO sour cream (Mike and I may fight over this until our teeth are no longer our own) someone else please try and report your findings! A disappointment, have to hand it a NAY.
Grab a bib and a stack of serviettes because it’s Sloppy Joe time. For the last few years I’ve been making my own, from scratch, Sloppy Joes with a lentil base. And I swear it comes very close to the real deal. Sloppy Joe’s when using canned Manwich is so ridiculously easy to prepare you almost feel like your doing it wrong. The conclusion is a YAY even if it’s a little bit messy.
School lunches have to trigger some sort of memory, if only because it was a social experiment in trading and bartering. I can’t say too many kids were climbing over tables to get at my bologna sandwiches, my favourite combo being Cheese Whiz and Bologna. But sure enough, today I’m giving it a YAY, because to me it’s just as good as I remember. Mike is a hard NAY on this, and that’s the only meal we disagreed on.
Okay time for some dessert! My grandma (everyone’s grandma really) made the best chocolate chip cookies ever! She kept them in her pantry in a tin box with a slice of white bread to keep it fresh (it works just make sure to switch up the bread every couple days). We never had her recipe, but one night after watching an episode of Friends where all Monica wants for her wedding is the chocolate chip cookie recipe from Phoebe’s grandma, the said recipe turns out to be an old Nestle recipe on the back of a wrapper.
Searching for this recipe we learned a little bit about the origins. The first chocolate chip cookie was baked in the late 1930’s and thanks to Wikipedia we found the original cookie recipe. Baking time was not included so we decided on a pre-heated oven at 375 for 12 minutes. Let’s just say they were pretty darn close! That being said, we have tried many recipes from Pinterest etc and we feel like we have had better cookies so I’ll give it a NAY. That being said, my grandma are still the best.
I had such a fun time with this experiment, what was really great was all the sharing Mike and I did. We even learned a few new things about each other.
I am pretty shocked how normal it was to eat these processed and prepared foods, considering now, Mike and I make it a point to shop whole whenever we can.
Thanks so much for reading! Let me know some of the foods you grew up with and if you still eat them!
P.S I think Mike might be slowly falling in love with Cheese Whiz lol.
30 almost 40 something gregarious nice girl. Homebase Prince Edward County. Always looking for the next adventure, whether in my own backyard or travelling the world. I get excited over pugs, unicorns and rainbows.