For many of us, treasured childhood memories revolve around food, puddings especially. If you grew up in the ‘60s and ‘70s, take your taste buds on a trip down memory lane and see how many of these delightful desserts you can remember.
Made by Bird’s, Angel Delight burst onto the pudding scene in 1967, cornering the market for instant desserts in the ‘70s when “convenience foods” were the height of sophistication.
The TV ad said, “It’s delicious, it’s de-lovely… it’s delightful, it’s delectable, it’s de-lightest, it’s de-limit, it’s Angel Delight!”
It’s still available today, but back in the day, popular flavours included strawberry, banana, lime, chocolate and butterscotch. Which was your favourite?
Tinned Fruit Cocktail
Speaking of sophistication, a tin of Fruit Cocktail totally trumped a tin of peaches back in the day.
Serving the sticky, syrupy mix of pears, grapes, peaches and cherries added a touch of class, and those who really liked to push the boat out might go all the way with some Dream Topping…
Decorate a dessert with Bird’s Dream Topping, and you could get carried away!” Which pieces did you pick out to trade with your siblings?
In the 70s, Rum Baba was the pudding of choice for any dinner party hostess with the mostest.
The fact that it contained more than a splash of rum didn’t seem to limit the servings dished up to the kids sitting at the “little table”.
Given the choice, I think it’s fair to say they’d all have opted for Angel Delight any day.
Lemon Meringue Pie
Another special occasion pudding served up in the ’70s came in a convenient “just add…” packet. Bird’s had packaged everything the modern cook needed – shortcrust pastry mix, lemon filling mix, and meringue mix – just add water!
Okay, it didn’t hit the spot like jam roly-poly and custard did for most kids, but it was still pudding – and it all had to be eaten up in 1 sitting because it wouldn’t keep. What’s not to like?
Tinned Rice Pudding
Ambrosia became the first company to produce tinned ready-made rice pudding in the ’30s and then during World War II much of what was produced made its way into Red Cross food parcels.
By the ‘60s Ambrosia Creamed Rice was a firm family favourite, joined by Ambrosia Devon Custard in 1969, but as for tapioca – not many ‘70s kids have such fond memories of that one!
The tagline we all came to know was, “Devon knows how they make it so creamy,” but the only thing we really pondered over was whether to have it hot or cold, with a swirl of jam or without, with a sprinkle of cinnamon or without?
Ah, Arctic Roll! No list of puddings we remember fondly would be complete without this retro gem.
Vanilla flavoured ice cream and raspberry flavoured sauce all rolled up inside a sponge cake – what could be better?
Bird’s Eye first sold it in 1968 and it flew off frozen food shelves until 1997 when falling sales led to its disappearance.
According to Bird’s Eye, at the height of its popularity in the ’80s, over 25 miles of Arctic Roll were sold each month, and due to “overwhelming consumer demand”, it reappeared in supermarket freezers in 2008 – perhaps proving the point that you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone.
- Knickerbocker Glory – What child could resist the temptation of a pudding that was almost as tall as them?
- Viennetta – This combination of ice cream and crackling chocolate didn’t appear until 1982 but it soon became the pudding of choice for spoiling ourselves.
- Bird’s Trifle – In 1969, the TV ad said, “When the people of Britain stopped bothering to make trifle, the Empire started to crumble…” Thank goodness Bird’s saved the day with their “just add water” packet mix! The strawberry flavoured custard variety perhaps holds the fondest memories.
- Flan – The combination of a ready-made flan base, a packet of Quick Gel and a tin of mandarin orange segments was all you needed to rustle up a show-stopping pudding! Just add Dream Topping for extra special occasions!
- Jamaica Ginger Cake and Custard – Another family favourite that could be rustled up in minutes, thanks to McVitie’s and Bird’s.
And last, but not least!
Who remembers treating themselves to a home-made coke float back in the day? Ah, the simple pleasure of adding a scoop of ice cream to a glass of your favourite fizzy drink, and sucking up the resulting gloop through a crazy straw – what fun we had!
Which childhood pudding brings back your fondest memories? Tell us which ones we’ve missed.