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Food Friendly May: The Instructional Video Edition | Manolo for the Big Girl

Food Friendly May: The Instructional Video Edition

I adore my cookbook collection, but there are times when a picture – especially a moving one –  is worth a minimum of a thousand words. This is where the instructional video comes in handy.

Instructional films have a long and storied history. I have vivid memories of the brief introduction to personal hygiene I was shown in the mid-seventies, which was at least thirty years old at the time. In it, we were informed that hair ought to be washed at least once every two weeks. I know this is true, because I recently found a copy and re-watched it for terrifying laughs.

But there are others that have advice that stands up better over time, and ones that aren’t meant to be taken seriously in the first place. I’d like to share one of each with you today.

The first was sent me by my brother the medieval historian, who enjoys spending many of his off-hours wandering the archives of YouTube for gems of forgotten wisdom. That’s how he found this charming – if rather stagy and slightly bizarre – PSA on cooking cabbage from 1941.

The second is more deliberately humorous. It’s an episode of Posh Nosh, in which The Hon. Simon and Minty Marchmont (Richard E. Grant and Arabella Weir) pompously teach us how to make leftovers from scratch.

Bon appetite!

2 Responses to “Food Friendly May: The Instructional Video Edition”

  1. Julie May 16, 2009 at 12:25 pm #

    Ha! I like “The Children…. as Themselves”

    Thanks for sharing that one. I’m trying to remember which scholar I’ve read who said that the MoF had an “obsession” with trying to get people not to overboil vegetables. What these campaigns were meant to do was make people more satisfied with their rations while also insuring that they were getting all the nutritional value possible. On the one hand, if people liked what they were eating they’d (hopefully) be more satisfied with the portions and the absence of alternatives. On the other, people were working exceptionally long factory shifts and needed nourishment, not to mention the fact that the whole ration system was based on fairly intricate nutritional calculations. Overboiling was wasteful both in the sense that people might not want to eat the product and because the overboiled veg would have lost its nutritional value. Add a hefty does of paternalism and you get government resources poured into teaching people how to boil cabbage.

  2. Julie May 17, 2009 at 4:02 am #

    Ha! I like “The Children…. as Themselves”

    Thanks for sharing that one. I’m trying to remember which scholar I’ve read who said that the MoF had an “obsession” with trying to get people not to overboil vegetables. What these campaigns were meant to do was make people more satisfied with their rations while also insuring that they were getting all the nutritional value possible. On the one hand, if people liked what they were eating they’d (hopefully) be more satisfied with the portions and the absence of alternatives. On the other, people were working exceptionally long factory shifts and needed nourishment, not to mention the fact that the whole ration system was based on fairly intricate nutritional calculations. Overboiling was wasteful both in the sense that people might not want to eat the product and because the overboiled veg would have lost its nutritional value. Add a hefty does of paternalism and you get government resources poured into teaching people how to boil cabbage.
    Oops…forgot to say great post! Looking forward to your next one.