Traditional cooking skills such as poaching an egg and making shortcrust pastry
are now almost obsolete, according to a new survey.
Over two thirds of today's mothers do not know how to make gravy from scratch, compared with just a third of their own mothers.
And just 15 per cent know how to make custard, compared with nearly half of mothers 35 years ago.The study of 2,500 women aged between 18 and 70 found that traditional
cooking skills have deteriorated so much that even the tea-making process has changed dramatically.
While most modern mothers will simply squeeze a teabag into a cup of boiling water, her Seventies counterpart would warm the pot and stew the tea, before straining the leaves and adding milk. Sixty-five
per cent of the women polled admitted that their mothers cooked more
family meals from scratch than they do.
Just one in four know how to poach the perfect egg without the use of gadgets, compared with 75 per cent of the older generation, who have the skill mastered.
And while half of all women who were parents in the Seventies can make shortcrust pastry without the aid of a recipe, only 16 per cent of today’s generation know the basic ingredients and method required.
The research, conducted by Waitrose, revealed that most of today's parents are confident cooking meat such as chicken, bacon, beef mince and sausages, but their children will rarely be served cuts such as kidney, liver or lamb hearts - staples of a Seventies mother's repertoire.
Neil Nugent, Executive Chef at Waitrose, said: 'It’s sad to think that the traditional kitchen skills, which our parents and grandparents used on a daily basis, are now becoming less frequently practised. 'It’s obviously inevitable that over the years lifestyles have changed
along with palettes, but basic skills such as poaching, braising and baking should be passed down from generation to generation.'