Bhutan, Meditation, Bread, Learning, Friends, Family, Music, Books, MT

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Nothing is Permanent

This "conversation" took place after my post about fish and chips.

1. Fish and Chips
The article was interesting but I didn't see mention of the National Federation of Fish Friers, which was established in 1913 and is in Leeds - only about a mile from where I live.
I can't remember the last time I ate f 'n' c because I buy some things from a fish friers' supplier and am dismayed at some of the additives used. :-(

2. Loaves and Fish (No Chips?)
Interesting Mary. The origins of foods always lead (Leed!) to disputes. Being a Kiwi, I know about the Pavlova debate with our Australian friends. I will update by blog though. Thanks.
We may get into trouble for going off the topic. However, we could argue that we are linking fish to bread with the Biblical account of Jesus feeding the masses with 5 loaves and 2 fish.
Does anyone know what kind of bread they would have been baking there and then? And how about a recipe for a loaf that will feed 1000, if my maths is correct?
Right, I must go and feed 5 with a packet of macaroni, milk, cheese and the remains of my loaf of bread.

3. Thread Drift
Sorry if anyone was irritated by this. I intended adding that as a child one of my favourite meals was a chip sandwich. A fried fish sandwich was even better but cost twice as much - 2d rather than 1d.
This was just after the war, Potters bakery was next door to the fish and chip shop and opposite the swimming baths, it was a real treat to have good chips between good bread!
Probably still would be but I'm trying to lose weight for a Special Occasion.

4. Chip Butty
Ah, the famous "chip butty". That was not something I had heard of until early adulthood.
Is Potters bakery still there? What kind of bread did you get there? My bread-memories are of returning from the local dairy with one of those loaves with two pieces joined together. Getting one of the two pieces (or both if you timed it well) to toast with butter and honey was a luxury. I think the two pieces often "fell apart" as I carried the loaf home, and I then had to pick at the fluffy pieces of bread that were exposed.
Later, that kind of loaf disappeared, replaced by the sliced loaf.

5. Potters Bakery
Still there? I don't know, I haven't been down there for, ooh, it could easily be the best part of some time. It's only about a mile away but since the polythene bag company moved across the city from the road between the baths and my school (both demolished a long time ago) there's been no reason to go.
If I remember I'll go and report. It's a fallacy that the memory gets worse as you age, the memory is perfect. The retrieval system however ...
The bread I remember most from Potters were teacakes. The plain ones were soft and had a coating of some powdery cream coloured substance I've never been able to reproduce.
I must have been about five years old when I was sent to Potters for some currant teacakes and I picked off the currants on the outside. This was wartime and we had very little sweet stuff. Then my little fingers delved for those currants just below the surface. Then the ones a bit deeper ... we lived just round the corner and across the road but by the time I'd dawdled home the tea cakes were like a rabbit warren. How did I think I could get away with it???

6. Drifting to interesting places... childhood memories of bread.
Fascinating hearing your memories, Mary.
Do you make teacakes yourself now? They must have looked like Swiss cheese when you finally got them home. All the bread, and big holes where the currants used to be. Yes, a rabbit warren. I look forward to hearing of Potters Bakery.
Another memory I have of bread, is of my grandpa. He had a funny way of buttering the bread first, then cutting the slice off. Well, it was funny to me at the time.
Then there was one of my friends. You remembered chip butties, well this guy made sugar sandwiches. White sugar. Not the best diet for a growing lad. Toast was what I liked. Every day, on returning home from school, I would make some. And if we had meat for dinner I always had to leave space for a meat sandwich. Dessert.

7. For Mark in Bhutan
So yesterday we happened to be going to town by a different route, one which took me past my now-gone primary school, the now-gone swimming/public baths and wash house and the parade of shops where Potters bakey was.
It's not there any longer, nor is Dobson's the sweet shop not the fish and chip shop not the strangely shaped off-licence on the pointed corner of two roads.
Nor is the street where I was brought up.
I wish I hadn't gone now, it was depressing. And I blame you for asking! :-)


  1. I don't know about the bread, but while finishing a motorbike ride last weekend with some friends, we shared a hipflask with scotch. It never seemed to finish at first and one friend asked the other (in Urdu), 'what is the English word for xxxx' (xxxx being an Urdu word/ phrase, which I can't remember, that essentially means: "when something is shared, it increases" (a bit like loaves and fishes and biblical scenes). The response was: "I don't think that happens in English".

  2. Carl, I can think of something else which increases when you share it.

    Did you see that an Indian whisky recently came third in an international competition? "Amrut Fusion", a cunning blend of Scottish and Indian barleys. Fused in Bangalore. Is that where they made the bomb? Our Maruti car is another Indian fusion. Not as strong as the whisky.

  3. This is the quite simply the best Spreydon influenced Himalayan blog I've ever read.

    You know I only let you win that day. I can't stand seeing a grown man cry.

    We're still frequently barbecuing squid. The Chinese have terracotta firepots too. Not quite as good as the Japanese ones - they're intended for heating claypots and have big holes in the side - but they do the job.

    I've just been reading Stieg Larsson too. I don't want to give too much away, but she solves Fermat's riddle, gets shot in the head at point blank range and buried, and then digs herself out of her grave all in a couple of pages.

    Bye Sweetie