In the 1950s, the Second World War was still a vivid memory for many. Although New Zealand was not greatly deprived during the war years, immigrants fleeing the horrors in Europe remembered the privations all too well. At school, my Scottish cooking teacher urged us never to waste a morsel, but by the time the sixties began, we were starting to relax.
Swinging London sang its siren song as we scrambled to catch up in our island fastness 13,000 miles away. There was actually less scrambling required than we thought, food-wise. While England had wrestled with rationing until 1954, we had dined like kings. Our fat sheep and cows, golden wheat fields, orchards dropping abundant fruit, and waters chock-full of swimming edibles all produced food fit for the finest restaurants abroad. But did we know it? Not at all. Even so, we did joke that Kiwis ate nine meals a day. Unfortunately, this was true.
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