Quotes from The Virago Book of Food: The Joy of Eating
1940 - 92
The house was entirely quiet. Melanie decided to adventure downstairs to the kitchen, where she had not been. She wanted to learn the new domestic geography as soon as she could, to find out what lay behind all the doors and how to light the stove and whereabouts the dog slept. To make herself at home. She had to make herself at home somehow. She could not bear to feel such a stranger, so alien, and somehow so insecure in her own personality, as if she found herself hard to recognise in these new surroundings. She crept down the lino-covered stairs.
The kitchen was quite dark because the blinds were drawn. There was a smell of stale cigarette smoke and some unwashed cups were stacked neatly in the sink, but the room was ferociously clean. It was quite a big room. There was a built-in dresser, painted dark brown, loaded with crockery, a flour jar, a bread-bin. There was a larder you could walk into. Melanie experimentally walked into it and pulled the door on to herself in a cool smell of cheese and mildew. What did they eat? Tins of things, they seemed particularly fond of tinned peaches, there was a whole stack of tins of peaches. Tinned beans, tinned sardines. Aunt Margaret must buy tins in bulk. There were a number of cake tins and Melanie opened one and found last night's currant cake. She took a ready-cut slice of it and ate it. It made her feel more at home, already, to steal something from the larder. She went back into the kitchen, scattering crumbs.
The Magic Toyshop