Do You Remember ‘Home Economics’?
In around three weeks, I am moving house for the 14th time in ten years! I suppose that is the hazard of working on construction projects.
I have adopted a system of packing up one room at a time, cleaning it and closing the door on it as I go. Then I put a post-it note on the door to remind me it is cleared. That way I spread the effort and stress of moving day.
Today, it is the turn of the kitchen.
In the Republic of Ireland and here in Southern Spain all the houses I have rented have been fully furnished – including kitchen equipment.
I love cooking, baking, juicing etc so I now have a range of domestic electrical devices that move with me. I also keep a UK extension lead so I can power them up anywhere in the world!
As a rule, when I move into a rental house, I pack up all the landlord’s kitchen equipment and substitute my own, so today – I will reverse the process – and manage for the next three weeks.
This morning I opened the larder and realised I don’t want to be moving all this food from one place to the next. In fact, there is money tied up in this food – and this is where the practice of ’home economics’ will come in.
It was called ‘Home Economics’ when I was at school, but I just thought it was another term for ‘cooking’. Now, I understand that it goes much further – and it is actually an art-form; a set of skills.
Between the ages of 11 and 15, I learned how to cook, plan meals, make my own dress patterns, sew (though it was my father that taught me originally).
When I lived in The Republic of Ireland, just after the ‘crash’, I noticed small sewing shops popping up everywhere. Some of them even offered sewing classes. Magazines featured articles on ‘make do and mend’ and similar blogs appeared on the internet. It became a trend to become self-sufficient, make use of second-hand clothes – which are now called ‘vintage’.
I guess this is a sign of the times. The materialistic days of the eighties, nineties and noughties gave way to ‘necessity’ being ‘the mother of invention’. People now have to save huge deposits to buy houses, or a share in a house; and this is why practicing home economics is experiencing a revival.
Back to the cupboard.
Firstly; list everything in the cupboard. Everything. The freezer and fridge too. Then on a separate piece of paper write menus for every day – using up the items and ingredients.
This is the fun part!
I have tins and packets of dried legumes: puy, yellow and green lentils, chickpeas and kidney beans. I adore chickpea dahl; so, I am going to make some – using a recipe from the internet.
The fun continues…
As I research recipes, I get the offer of 30 Healthy Recipes Every Woman Should Know (Elizabeth Ryder).
Stuff for free!
This Home Economics thing is really working!
I can also re-learn what to do with dried pulses.
And I get put on a newsletter mailing list that is relevant to me!
If you have any time and money-saving tips for moving house or home economics – just leave me a comment at the bottom of this blog.