Anyone familiar with cookery shows will know the phrase “a quick meal made with everyday ingredients from your larder”. Yeah, right.
Whilst watching Everyday Gourmet I heard this phrase and my groans were cut short by Justine’s mention of tinned tuna. Yes, a tin of tuna. I have one of those, I thought. In my larder. Bloody hell! Justine went on to make fish croquettes with wasabi mayo. I don’t have any wasabi, but you can’t win them all.
This made me think about my own attitude to what constitutes an ‘everyday’ ingredient and my initial snobbishness about using tinned fish. Justine aims her programme at families, people on a budget or those short on time. A seemingly far cry from Nigella’s luxurious pantry, the size of a small shed.
Ingredients will no doubt differ depending on: status (single, family, shared accommodation), location (city or rural), what you can afford etc.
Masterchef Australia has a challenge that involves cooking a fine dining meal using everyday items from an everyday family’s cupboard. No cinnamon infused sugar a la Nigella or a canister of liquid nitrogen that Heston surely keeps at home. Frozen food, tinned fruits, biscuits and cereal were their ingredients. Some successful results but many failures.
So, I wonder, what is the most random item in your larder and what is the most ridiculous thing declared an everyday ingredient by a TV chef?