Saturday 23rd February 2019

Ideal Meal. #LifeThisWeek 31/52. 2017.97.

Ideal Meal. #LifeThisWeek 31/52. 2017.97.

So, who picked this prompt? Ummm. It would appear that I DID. How interesting then when I cannot EAT all of the foods I am about to list….so let’s go! It is a story about ‘my ideal meal.’

One day, perhaps next year some time I WILL be able to eat these again. Mind you, they would not have been cooked by Mum. Sadly.

Let’s venture back to the 1960s and 1970s for this. Although I must add that this meal combo does still occur! I am making this prompt a tribute to my late Mum. She made these meals many times for friends AND family. My mum was a superb cook and was self-taught. She had many guides and recipes but in the end she followed what she thought would work. I notice I am a cook like that too.

Dad misses Mum’s cooking too but he is managing for himself very well these days! 2006. Mum’s last Mother’s Day.

Even though I could never eat 3 courses any more, I am presenting my ideal meal thus:


Simple ingredients: shelled cooked prawns, shredded lettuce, a sauce of tasty tomatoey-goodness. Accompanied by little triangles of brown bread with butter.


Lots of ingredients: Ham, Cooked Chicken, Cooked Pork, Turkey, Roasted Potatoes & Pumpkin & Sweet Potatoes. Cooked green vegetables and carrots. Accompanied by apple sauce, Mum’s gravy (made from the pan leftovers), cranberry sauce. This photo is as close to one of Mum’s baked dinners that I could find!


Few ingredients. In fact, the one Mum, my daughter and I make is the recipe on the back of the Nestle Condensed Milk can. Yummo! Not accompanied by anything. Warm or cool. Fine. Must have at least one slice left over to the next day.×680.jpg

So, there it is. An ideal meal where there would have been the company of family and most of all my parents.

However, I have made all of these meals too, over the years but with only me and one husband to cook for we tend to eat much more lightly.

What is your ideal meal?

Are you salivating over this page like I did when I wrote it?

How hungry are you now?

Denyse. I link up here on Mondays too: Alicia’s blog  for Open Slather and Kell’s blog  for Mummy Mondays. This is my link-up: Life This Week. You can link up something old or new, just come on in. * Please add just ONE post each week! * Feel free to go with the prompt for the week to add your ‘take’ on the prompt. Or not. * Please do stay to comment on my post as I always reply and it’s a bloggy thing to do! * Check out what others are up to by leaving a comment because we all love our comments, right! * Add a link back to this blog in your post somewhere. I don’t have a ‘button’ so a link in text is fine! *Posts deemed by me, the owner of the blog and the link-up, to be unsuitable for my audience will be deleted without notice. * THANK you for linking up today! Next Week: Selfie Time.



  1. Oh wow, reading through your ideal meal made me realise it’s kind of mine as well. Right down to the lemon meringue pie. I love that your mum was a self-taught cook and did things that she thought would taste good.
    I’m such a big fan of the prawn cocktail that I secretly think that I was born in the wrong era! Sorry to hear that food is still presenting issues, but hopefully you’re still on the mend!

    • Thanks Kat! I am eating much more than I could initially but anything has to be small and easily swallowed and I have no top teeth at all so .. yep it will be well into next year for the implants I believe! Nevertheless I have been doing as much as I can to bring variety into each day as I get bored easily! Still have soups and casserole type dishes in the freezer so I will be fine. I loved that you too like a good old-fashioned comfort meal like this and especially a prawn cocktail! They are delish! Denyse x

  2. My ideal meal is roast lamb made by my gorgeous Nana, She unfortunately passed away many many years ago but no one else has come even slightly close to roasting a better, more mouth watering lamb than her.

    Her Napolean cake was also extraordinary!


    • Oh wow! So true about trying to replicate a meal isn’t it? There is something that the beloved person like your grandmother or my mum “added” to a meal that no-one else could. And she made Napoleon cake! Wow! I remember Mum buying napoleon cakes but never making them. I wonder if you can still buy them! Denyse x

  3. I adore roast turkey and roast potato! The only thing xmas has going for it! Fond of prawn cocktail too, as a kid I thought it was so fancy in the tall glass!

    • It’s a bit mouth-watering isn’t it seeing this food? Yes, prawn cocktail in the fancy glasses! I think Mum had ones that were just for prawn cocktails! Denyse x

  4. Well now the peanut butter toast I just finished eating seems a bit lame haha. I love a good roast. So filling and so easy to put on and ignore! I cook much the same – get an idea of what others do from a recipe and throw my own flare in. The one thing I don’t get is lettuce in the prawn cocktails … to me it has alway seemed like the cellophane filler in a gift basket!

    • Yes, I just had boring rice bubbles eaten with a teaspoon as that’s the size that can fit in my mouth ! Roast dinner is the best and we no longer have them with just two of us.. sad to say! The lettuce in the prawn cocktail was both decorative and for some people added to the prawn made it right. I have been known to make a meal of a prawn cocktail by adding mango and avocado! Very filling an delish in summer! Denyse x

  5. I’m a tad torn. Although I love baking dessert, I don’t tend to eat it, so rarely would have 3 courses. I am, however, with you on the prawn cocktails – I just love all their retro yumminess – with Mooloolaba prawns, of course. If really pressed for a decision, I’d opt for a Hainanese chicken. Perfectly poached chicken, allowed to cool wrapped in sesame oil brushed cling film and sliced. Rice cooked in the stock, and the whole thing served with a hand mixed chilli dipping sauce, a ginger, garlic & shallot dipping sauce, some kecap manis and a little bowl of the soup. Yum.

    • Wow! You are a much more adventurous cook and gourmand than I! I am a very conservative eater and cook so I guess for me it is what you know! The chicken you described sounds yummy! Yes you are in the right territory for fresh prawns and a retro cocktail for sure! Denyse x PS my mum was a great cook but she rarely ate dessert! She was more of a savoury tooth than a sweet tooth! But she loved cooking cakes and desserts for others!

  6. Oh Denyse your post brought so many memories back about my Mum. I remember in the 70s she thought she was very ‘continental’ because she made Spaghetti Bolegnaise! I love your perfect meal except for some reason I’ve never been a Lemon Meringue Pie girl. In fact, I’m not really sure I would have a favourite dessert. It is also funny how these meals are coming back into fashion but with different names like: deconstructed lemon meringue pie which is really just putting all the ‘elements’ on the plate Oh I’ve been watching Master Chef for too long LOL:) Have a great week, Denyse and hope each day you are feeling better xx

    • Goodness me, de-constructed Lemon Meringue pie! What a load of …. My mum wasn’t much of a sweet tooth at all and rarely ate her desserts or cakes but she did enjoy making them for others. Spag Bol! Such memories! In 1970 I was in my first year of teaching and in a share house and one of the responsibilities on a rostered basis was to cook. I learned how to make spag Bol there and even though I have made it about a million times since it is a firm memory and learning back then. Mum did not make anything like that but when I learned to make lasagne I recall sharing it with mum and dad. Interesting how meals bring memories flooding back. I am going well. Eating with more variety but I won’t be able to chew anything well until next year so I continue to have soups and casseroles with small pieces of meat/veges that I can cut into very small pieces and manage to get down without choking! Thanks for checking on me! Denyse x

  7. What a beautiful memory of your mum, Denyse. It’s the kind of meal that will bring smiles and love to all who share it with you.

    SSG xxx

  8. I absolutely love Lemon Meringue Pie! I’ve never made one but I’m planning on baking a few sweet dishes that I’ve never made before in the coming months and LMP is one of them! Yum!

    • It truly is the easiest recipe…especially if you use a pre-made shell or mini-shells. I used to make mini versions by buying the frozen 12 pastry shells and cook them up, then add the ingredients for the pies and put back in a low heat oven. Recipe is on (or used to be on!) the Nestle Condensed Milk tin. Denyse x

  9. These are all favourites of mine too Denyse – I make a fantastic lemon meringue pie (if I do say so myself!) but, like you, I don’t tend to eat these much anymore now that there’s just two of us at home. They get saved for special occasions – and that keeps them as favourites doesn’t it?

    • Yes indeed it would but unfortunately they are few and far between especially on special occasions these days as we insist the family not drive to see us because the road between here and Sydney gets crazy-busy! One day, though, I think that we just might make ourselves a baked dinner when I have the teeth to celebrate being able to eat meat again!! Denyse x

  10. I’ve gone very much off-topic but linked up my post about the romance writers’ festival I’ve been at.

    My mum’s roast is still a fave meal of mine, though I can appreciate beautifully cooked steak or takeaway at my favourite Chinese place!

    • Looking forward to reading it too Deb. I think that it is wonderful you can have your fave meal at Mum’s…I was drooling at your photo the other night!

  11. Denyse, seeing your picture of prawn cocktails has brought back so many memories from my childhood. I can just picture eating out at the local Cobb & Co and celebrating some family occasion, all dressed up and feeling so glam eating a prawn cocktail. I’ve got some frozen prawns stashed away in the freezer, so might just have to have a prawn cocktail for lunch.