More About Chips, Crisps or Fries (and Bananas)

In my last post I raised the issue of chips/crisps/fries and preferences for eating them.  This reminded me of my dad who liked chips but absolutely never came to terms with eating them in a bread bun…

Banana Sandwiches or Chip Butties?

I will get onto chips in a minute but I just want to talk a little bit about bananas. It seems almost impossible to believe but it was only in 1954, the year that I was born, that war time food rationing was only officially ended a couple of weeks later on July 4th.

It began in January 1940 when bacon, butter and sugar were rationed and this was followed soon after by meat, tea, jam, biscuits, breakfast cereals, cheese, eggs, milk and canned fruit.  As the Second World War progressed, most kinds of food came to be rationed along with clothing and petrol.

I mention this because the very last food item to be released from the shackles of rationing in Britain were bananas, which for me is quite a significant fact.  My Dad loved bananas and I could never quite understand why but I suppose he was only twenty-two in 1954 and hadn’t had the pleasure for fifteen years and in fact it is quite possible I suppose that he had never had a banana before in his life.

Interestingly, fish and chips were considered so important during the Second-World-War that it was one of only a very few food items that were never rationed.

The return of the banana was hailed as heralding an end to austerity and to the curse of the ration book.  The Labour government even instigated a national banana day in 1946.

This was only a one year event but in the USA they continue to this day with several banana themed days – February 23rd Banana Bread Day, March 2nd Banana Cream Pie Day, August 25th Banana Split Day and most important of all, April 15th National Banana day!

The USA also has some other weird food days – July 15th National French Fries Day, even though they don’t know the difference between chips and crisps and most odd of all National Hot Cross Bun Day on September 11th.  Now, I know that Easter is a moveable feast but I don’t believe that it has ever fallen as late in the year as September!*

My dad liked all sorts of strange banana combinations, weirdest of all being banana sandwiches on brown bread with sugar, but he was also very fond of chopped bananas in custard.  Personally I’ve never been that keen on bananas at all but this rationing fact explains a lot about my dad’s unusual dietary preferences.

Once a week we all had to have bananas for a pudding until one day when I was about fifteen I could take it no longer I planned a teenager protest and I refused to eat them.  It was the only time I can remember him getting really upset with me but I stood my ground even though he severely chastised me and wouldn’t let me leave the table.  I continued to stubbornly refuse them and eventually I think I wore him down and he ate them up for me because he liked them so much. That is what you call a win/win result!

Now, getting back to chips and the point of the story because at about the same time as he was gorging banana sandwiches dad used to turn his nose up at a chip butty and found this quite unacceptable, which for a man who would slap a banana between two slices of bread and put sugar on it was always a mystery to me.  He would have a slice of buttered bread with his chips but the idea of making a sandwich he considered rather common!

Chip Butty

So, in response to the comments received after my previous post I started to think about all the other chip combinations that he would disapprove of and I think his top five would be:

1  Cheesy Chips

2  Chips with Curry

3  Chips with Mayonnaise (and he wouldn’t have liked Reservoir Dogs either)

4  Chips in foil packets (because these are crisps)

but most of all, and thank you to my friends in Canada for this one…

5  Poutine with curds of cheese and gravy

Graphic content warning – do not proceed beyond this point if you have a weak stomach or are of a nervous disposition…

 

…this is Poutine from Canada…

Poutine

When I first heard of this I was convinced that it was some sort of wind-up, but apparently not, you can even get it in McDonalds, but thankfully only in Canada…

McDonalds Poutine

Try eating that in your car without making a mess of your trousers while you are driving…

So, now please tell me about any of your own dining peculiarities or personal favourites?

*The timing of Easter seems somewhat confusing because it is termed a moveable feast that is not fixed in relation to the civil calendar as for instance is Christmas Day or my Birthday.

Easter falls at some point in a thirty-five day period sometime between late March and late April each year and the exact date is determined by the cycle of the moon.  After several centuries of disagreement, and prompted by the Roman Emperor Constantine in the year 325 to sort things out, all churches accepted the basis of the Alexandrian Church that Easter is the first Sunday after the first fourteenth day of the Paschal Full Moon that is on or after the ecclesiastical vernal equinox.  To you and me this is the first Sunday after the first full moon following the spring equinox which is that moment in time when the centre of the Sun can be observed to be directly above the equator.

 

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41 responses to “More About Chips, Crisps or Fries (and Bananas)

  1. I clicked on this because I like chips, I didn’t expect such an informative, historical post 🙂

    I tried poutine for the first time last year but grew up with chip butties which are popular here in New Zealand. I can appreciate a good chip buttie but these days I get full so easily I’d rather fill up on something else.

    This post would make a great submission to Our Growing Edge, which is a link up party for food adventures. This month’s theme is “Nostalgia” and I think your post would fit right in. More info here: http://bunnyeatsdesign.com/our-growing-edge/

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  2. Rolling on the floor laughing here in Canada. Delighted to be ‘featured’. 🙂

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  3. I’m not a big banana fan (or even a Big Banana fan) but I do recall as a child having a liking for sliced banana with cream and coffee sugar. It had to be coffee sugar – you know, the sugar in the big granules. I don’t know why. I think I liked the crunchiness of it.

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  4. I remember as a kid eating banana with fresh french bread. Nothing to do with war limitations here in Argentina, but maybe my parents inherited tjis habit from my spanish grandparents that migrated here from impoverished Spain at that time. Who knows, but I love banana and bread. Also I love smashed bananas with cream cheese and or dulce de leche (caramel)

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  5. I’ve had poutine once. I even helped make that same poutine. And I blogged about it. It’s sure worth trying—at least once.

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  6. Throw in the good old meat pie and sausage roll with tomato sauce and I’m in Heaven – High School days all over again – without the banana though 🙂

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  7. Changing the topic very slightly…what about Mars bars in batter? My daughter said deep fried haggis was OK-ish, but is confectionery in a savoury context just a step too far?

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    • I went to Scotland last year John but was never brave enough to try the deep fried mars bar! I did have some deep fried ice cream once, I think it was in Italy. Despite sounding very unlikely it worked quite well.

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  8. I must say, I find the idea of a chip butty abhorrent- carbs upon carbs ….yuk! It wasn’t until I was a student that I even heard of such things!

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  9. Maybe the Yanks have made hot cross bun day 11th of September to remember the twin towers. Anyway one thing I remember about my dad was the first time he had a Greek salad and he spent some very exasperating moments chasing a green olive around his plate trying to spear it with his fork and then when he got it he cut it in half with his knife. A bit fussy eating anything without the correct knife and fork. Spaghetti was also a knife and fork job and he had to cut the long pasta into small pieces. It took hours.

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    • Did you know that 28th May in Australia is National Burger Day?
      Great memories of dealing with unfamiliar food. My mum always tells a story that served lasagne for the first time my dad’s reaction was ‘what’s this muck?’. He once threw a chicken kiev in the bin after assuring her that he had eaten it and enjoyed it but after a couple of days the smell of garlic gave him away.

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  10. Banana sandwiches (with sugar) every Sunday have turned me off for life. I like a banana, just not rammed in between two pieces of bread. Chip butties now that’s a different story – love them!

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  11. I adore banana pudding, which for us is vanilla custard with bananas and vanilla wafers – and perhaps a meringue. My mom made a version that included sweetened condensed milk, whipping cream and who knows what other calorie packed ingredients. I actually like bananas all by themselves unless I’m in a car. Then something about the smell makes me nauseous, to the chagrin of my banana loving husband. Chip butties? No thanks.

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  12. What amused me most about this post was the chance I got to say ‘banana’ in a British accent so many times. Ahh – the simple pleasures of life from California, where hot cross buns can be eaten any time of the year.

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  13. Mashed Banana on toast is a big favourite of mine. I’ve even been known to have a cheese and banana toasted sandwich. Far better when making it in one of those toasting machines rather than toasting two slices of bread and adding the cheese and banana.

    Somebody mentioned Hot Cross Buns. Can’t get them in our local bakery in December. No, you have to ask for Winter Spice Buns before they will sell you Hot Cross Buns! Oh, and don’t forget that the Cadburys Creme Egg will soon be making its appearance once again. Only another 17 days to go before they appear in a shop near you!

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  14. Oh, give me my hot fries with ketchup. Once per week I’ll enjoy these. And, Mick D’s (McDonalds) does a great job when they are fresh.Banana chips are the best when they’re crispy and fresh as well. I can’t see myself consuming a ripe banana sandwich. But, never say never. Your dad is truly usual and a brave soul….interesting palate.
    Cheers!

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  15. You must have had a cool family if the only thing you had to rebel about was bananas in your dessert.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Pingback: National Potato Chips Day (USA) | Have Bag, Will Travel

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