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10 foods to take you back to your childhood

Posted on 13 October 2016

Grab a brew and tuck in to this…

What we eat has changed a lot since the war. We tuck in to spicy and exotic delicacies from across the globe without hesitation. But many of us were raised on much simpler fare, because that’s all there was, if not all we could afford. Back then, fried spam and spuds was considered a feast. We ate everything on our plate and were grateful for it.

The wonderful thing is, food is so much more than fuel. It connects you to your past and to those around you. Just the smell of a baking cake can have you back in mum’s kitchen licking the spoon.

So wash your hands, sit up straight and enjoy these 10 foodie favourites we’ve rustled up for you.

Beef dripping and bread

Nothing beats the flavour of beef dripping smothered over bread, warmed on a toasting fork over the fire. The gamey-tasting spread and that rich brown jelly at the bottom of the basin were pure heaven.

Family sitting at a table at teatime

Cockles and whelks

Bought at the seaside or from the cockle man doing his rounds, these chewy seafood favourites were splashed in vinegar, sprinkled with pepper and were a popular choice for Sunday tea.

little girl pouring vinegar over her plate of cockles

The first banana

Last to come off ration in 1954, many kids had never tasted these strange looking fruits. Luckily when bananas returned to the shops, the Labour government decreed that every child should taste a banana. It was probably the only way to stop mums and dads scoffing them all.

Man eating a banana post-rationing

A quarter of sweets

When sugar rationing finally ended, there was a stampede to every corner shop in Britain! Ignoring mums’ cries of “don’t ruin your dinner” kids pondered over the penny tray and waited excitedly as sherbet lemons and dolly mixtures were shaken from the jar to the scale’s bowl.

Children buying sweets in the corner shop

The aroma of a Lyons Corner House

Open the door to any Lyons Corner House and you’d be hit with the smell of chocolate, flowers and baking. It was home to the ‘Nippy’ waitresses, the best-tasting tea and the “salad bowl” lunch that let you grab a bowl and pile it as high as you could.

People sitting at tables inside a Lyons Corner House

The whiff of tripe

Remember the smell of tripe cooking? Or even worse, the taste of it? Seeing that wet, alien-like rubbery blob on your plate always made the tummy churn but it was cheap and nan loved it.

Older woman holding up a large piece of tripe

Kippers for breakfast

A hearty breakfast treat was rusty coloured kippers with thickly buttered bread to help get the bones down. It would be teatime before the fishy smell finally cleared from the house… and your clothes!

Two men holding rods of smoked kippers outside a smokehouse

Burgers at Wimpy

In the 1950s Wimpy bars landed on every high street. A very British take on the American diner, they were packed with eager teenagers eating a Polynesian, shanty or bender burger with knives and forks. How civilised.

The inside of a Wimpy burger bar

The arrival of the exotic

The 1960s and 70s ushered in a host of exotic new flavours. Taste buds were introduced to the delights of chicken tikka masala and chop suey (usually from a Vesta packet) and many an evening was spent trying to spin spaghetti on forks.

Children trying to eat spaghetti in a restaurant

Fondue and wine

In the 1970s, no dinner party was complete without a fondue set. Families and friends across the country sat with their teak-handled forks, digging bread out of bubbling cheese, while sipping on Mateus Rose.

Stylish 1970s 20-somethings enjoying a fondue party

And one more because we couldn’t resist… Birds Custard

Smothering, definitely not drizzling, this silky delight over sponge pudding or apple pie was a joy like no other. Bright yellow and not a vanilla pod in sight. Yum!

Little boy licking a pudding bowl

If these sweet and savoury memories have got you feeling nostalgic, you might also like our look back at house prices then and now and the days when make do and mend was a way of life.

SunLife offers a range of straightforward and affordable products including over 50s life insurance, funeral plans, life insurance, pet insurance, ISAs and Will writing services.

Here's the information that you need to know about who we are and the other companies that we work with in order to provide our products and services.

Who are SunLife? 

Phoenix Life Limited trades as SunLife and is the provider of the Guaranteed Over 50 Plan, SunLife Insurance and the life insurance policy payment option for Funeral Plans. Phoenix Life Limited’s registered office is at 1 Wythall Green Way, Wythall, Birmingham, B47 6WG (registered in England, no. 1016269). Phoenix Life Limited is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority and is entered on the Financial Services Register (registration no. 110418). As part of SunLife’s commitment to quality service and security, telephone calls may be recorded.

SunLife Limited distributes financial products and services and is a company limited by shares, registered office: 1 Wythall Green Way, Wythall, Birmingham, B47 6WG (registered in England, no. 05460862). SunLife Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and is entered on the Financial Services Register (registration no. 769427).

You can contact us by post at SunLife, PO Box 1395, Peterborough, PE2 2TR or by phone on 0800 008 6060.

If you choose to add Funeral Benefit Option to your Guaranteed Over 50 Plan the funeral services are arranged and provided by Dignity Funerals Limited. Dignity Funerals Limited is a company registered in England and Wales No. 00041598. VAT registered No. 486 6081 14. 4 King Edwards Court, King Edwards Square, Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands, B73 6AP. Telephone No. 0121 354 1557. Fax No. 0121 355 808. Part of Dignity plc. A British Company. Dignity are not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority or the Prudential Regulation Authority but are registered providers with the Funeral Planning Authority.

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The funeral services are arranged by a funeral director selected by Golden Charter Ltd. Golden Charter Ltd are not required to be authorised or regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority or the Prudential Regulation Authority in relation to funeral plans but are registered providers with the Funeral Planning Authority.

If you choose to pay for your funeral in one go, with a single payment, you will have a contract with Golden Charter. The funeral services will be arranged by a funeral director selected by Golden Charter Ltd.

If you choose to pay for your funeral with a life insurance policy, the policy will be provided by Phoenix Life Limited, trading as SunLife. The funeral services will be arranged by a funeral director selected by Golden Charter Ltd.

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My Smarter (ISA) is provided by Scottish Friendly Asset Managers Limited. Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Details can be found on the Financial Services register, registration No. 188832. Member of The Investment Association. Registered Office: Scottish Friendly House, 16 Blythswood Square, Glasgow G2 4HJ.

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The information contained on this website is based on Hugh James' understanding of the law of intestacy in England and Wales only as at April 2014. The law in Scotland and Northern Ireland is significantly different. This is for information purposes and is not intended to be legal advice.

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SunLife Family Life Insurance is provided by Scottish Friendly Assurance Society Limited which is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. Details can be found on the Financial Services register (registration number 110002). Registered Office: Scottish Friendly House, 16 Blythswood Square, Glasgow G2 4HJ. 

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