I tasted a piece of potato from the soup pot to test its state of “cookedness” and was immediately transported back to childhood. That taste was so reminiscent of the times when there was a fire on the wood heap at home. Someone would have swept up the chips from the firewood cutting and made a tidy heap of them, lighting them to make the tidy up complete. This resulted in a glowing, safely slow burning fire.
We children would fossick out a used jam tin lid and beg a potato –or sometimes an apple. If the jam tin lid was available we would carefully place our slices of potato on it, or if this smart cooking utensil was not to be found we would opt for a suitable stick and attach a piece of potato to it. The fire was then used to “cook” our anticipated outdoor meal. The problem seemed to be that we were very anxious for the tasting and did not allow enough time for the actual cooking process. Our long-suffering and loving Grandfather who was visiting, would be plied with slices of half cooked potato or apple and pronounce them scrumptious. Of course we believed him because to us they were indeed scrumptious!
What a beautiful freedom we enjoyed in our country childhood. And what great parents and grandparents we had to people it, and to allow us our times of play, supervised or not, but always within the limits of behaviour we knew were there.
So my slice of not quite cooked potato, from the soup pot today, reminded me sweetly of the taste of those long-ago times of “outdoor” cooking.