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Mum’s Memorable Meals

Celebrating Mother's Day in Oz!

By Angie the Archivist 📚🪶Published about a month ago 3 min read
Mum’s Memorable Meals
Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash

Yay! Ginger Mutts! my famished family cheer... Nana’s trusty Ginger Nut recipe with an accidental twist (SR flour instead of Plain). Swooping like ravenous ravens towards the laden, oven tray, we liberate crazily, shaped biscuits from it. Mmm! Crispy crust encases their soft, spicy centres.

Rewind almost five decades to my angel faced, impish baby brother as he huffed and puffed… his open palm patting his gasping mouth.

Can I have another Huh Huh biscuit? he’d beg. Mum’s Ginger Nuts sure could singe our mouths! Was she in a hurry or simply distracted by her other 57 urgent tasks, each clamouring for her attention? Other times, many biscuits emerged from the oven as charcoal rocks. My fortunate father regularly scored these in his tuckerbox as smoko specials! A firm believer in the motto Waste not want not, some days it was just smarter to share his bounty. Duffy dog… his faithful building site foreman, eagerly snaffled them down. Problem solved!

Mum’s reputation as an excellent cook was as readily accepted as her Black Forest Cherry Cake by famished guests. Her scope was extensive. A few of my favourites were: Beetroot Soup; Beef Stroganoff; Pavlova; Caramel Squares; Russian Caramel and birthday cakes… boiled fruit cake ornately decorated with royal icing and marzipan (sans almond essence… otherwise believed by me, to be crushed cockroaches). Obviously, I had simple tastes!

Most days before heading off to school, we’d ask what was for tea and even barred (claimed) the right to scrape out the pot! Look out if Mum lost track of who she’d promised it to earlier that morning, and accidentally gave it to another child. Before main course was devoured, we’d demand What’s for dessert? Woe betide us when, on the rare occasion we heard the unbelievable response Nothing… you can have some fruit. We thought our throats were cut! One mere generation later, the question is irrelevant. With my dear mother no longer on the scene… dessert only makes an appearance on special occasions or when we’re entertaining visitors! Sad times!

Every dish was a culinary delight … except… when it wasn’t! With an A+ score for 98.7% of Mum’s cooking efforts, naturally, the family laughingly reminisce about those rare, epic failures. So sad to think that out of fifteen thousand plus, marvellous meals made and served up, we still recall those memorable disasters.

Scrumptious Shepherd’s Pie was set before the hungry hordes…

Eew! This is awful! we recklessly whined.

There’s nothing wrong with it… eat up! Mum retorted.

With two towering avocado trees weighed down with ripe fruit, smuggling avocado into the dish was her frugal, foolproof solution to the glut. Despite never experiencing arsenic poisoning, the bitter flavour convinced us that Tonight was the night! The proof of the cooking was definitely in the eating… we reluctantly ate up… gagging on each teaspoonful. One unjustly criticised cook was later observed surreptitiously scraping her untouched gourmet delight into the scrap bucket!

Unfortunately for my family, I neither enjoy nor excel at cooking. As I view it as a necessary evil, I rely almost totally on my mother’s reliable, economical, easy to cook recipes. Her cheese and garlic minced beef rissoles make an almost weekly appearance at our dinner table, while golden syrup steam pudding is one of the few homemade desserts to grace our visitor menu. Mum’s loving legacy lives on. Thanks Mum!


Ginger Nuts/Mutts: (Mum’s original recipe converted to metric)


1 cup butter (225g) softened at room temperature

1 1/2 cups sugar

2 eggs

1/2 cup treacle

3 cups plain flour (450g) [Ginger Mutts: half or all Self Raising flour]

2 teaspoons bicarbonate soda

2 teaspoons ginger powder



1. Beat butter and sugar to a cream

2. Add eggs and beat

3. Add treacle and beat

4. Add sifted flour; bicarbonate soda and ginger

5. Mix

6. Drop small teaspoonsful onto greased baking trays

7. Cook 10-15 minutes in moderate oven or until brown (of course the raw mix is brown, so tricky to judge!)


When I bake Ginger Nuts… this recipe makes approximately 40 elephant sized, misshapen biscuits! Of course, your biscuits will probably behave themselves and emerge from the oven as perfect little discs… in which case beware… you might end up with 87 of them!

I hope you enjoy them!


Below is a typical tale of my dear Dad’s chaotic capers, without my Mum alive to keep everything ship shape!

recipehumanityfact or fiction

About the Creator

Angie the Archivist 📚🪶

Addicted to reading, especially fiction and poetry.

Personality of a Labrador.

Attention span of a gnat! 😳

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Comments (5)

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  • Shirley Belkabout a month ago

    I had to look up "treacle," but found out that the American version is probably best known as "sorghum" molasses. It is more bitter than the lighter syrups, but we mixed butter together with it and "sopped" our biscuits in it when we were kids. I don't think I've had any since then that I can remember...but not too many people make homemade biscuits now, either.

  • Judey Kalchik about a month ago

    The taste of a sweet can put you right back into that long ago moment. The time spent mixing, baking, stirring, and making all contribute to the last love of those memories

  • Hannah Mooreabout a month ago

    Ew, avocado in shepherds pie.

  • Dharrsheena Raja Segarranabout a month ago

    Does is taste similar to gingerbread? Also, what is Russian Caramel?

  • Mark Gagnonabout a month ago

    Black Forest Cake, is one of my favorites! A nice tribute to your mom.

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