Five a day

Prompt: You’re being exiled to a deserted island and your captors will only deliver 5 foods. What do you choose?

As someone who loves their food, I thought this prompt looked fun 😀


A loaf of bread, a glass of wine and thou … 
If it’s good enough for Omar Khayyam, it’ll do nicely for me. And there’s also the fact that I simply adore bread. While it’s been a life-long love, I’ve also recently discovered the joys of sourdough bread being kinder on the digestion – or mine anyway – hence my first choice being sourdough bread. I considered other forms of starch, like rice – Tilda Basmati in particular – nearly made the grade, but was shaved into second place by my next choice …


Give me a good sharp knife and a good sharp cheese and I’m a happy man …
So sayeth no lesser being than George R.R. Martin – and I couldn’t agree with him more. While in this scenario, it’s likely I’d be provided with supermarket slabs of plastic enclosed cheddar, I can always dream that my kidnappers are French or Italian, and shop at local markets. A tangy chèvre, a creamy delight of garlic & herbs, a sharp blue, a humble (or not so) cheddar, crumbly wensleydale, a gooey raclette … the choice is endless and luscious in my second selection – cheese.


“Home grown tomatoes, home grown tomatoes
What would life be like without homegrown tomatoes
Only two things that money can’t buy
That’s true love and home grown tomatoes.”

These words were sung by John Denver …

I did find another quote on tomatoes from that doyenne of cookery – Elizabeth David – but it eulogised about the impact of tomatoes on the processed food market, and I’m all about the fresh raw tomato, so it was rapidly rejected. Although not depicted in the photograph I selected, the day I discovered heritage tomatoes, I thought I’d died and gone to heaven. The tomato may not come in as wide a variety as cheese, but they both play oh so nicely together with a crusty loaf.


I’m strong to the finish ’cause I eats me spinach …
The immortal words of Popeye.

This was a more pragmatic selection. I knew I needed to add a green leafy vegetable for … well, all those reasons that you need green leafy vegetables 😉  I almost went for a generic salad leaves option, but spinach having the added benefit of being an excellent source of iron swung it.


Someone once threw me a small, brown, hairy kiwi fruit, and I threw a wastebasket over it until it was dead …
Thus spake Erma Bombeck, US comedian, and – frankly – who can blame her 😀

My final selection of kiwi fruit was also largely a pragmatic one. I was after a source of vitamin c and there is no better source than kiwi fruit. I also rather like them if I’m being honest, for a satsuma is certainly neater to eat.

What might you choose for your five-a-day … and why?

© Debra Carey, 2020

9 thoughts on “Five a day

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  1. You’ll be amused to hear that the Popeye connection was due to an incorrectly placed decmal point – spinach is good for iron, but not as good as the Sailorman thought. I forget if it’s out by a factor of 10 or 100, but it was certainly a major selling point until a re-study. Toms are good for vitamin C too. I confess that once or twice I’ve used kiwis as a replacement for toms in cooking, when I’ve started and then discovered the lack of ingredients…


  2. Clementines because sweet and juicy, eggs cause I font get bored, cheese cause its cheese, good butter cookies, tea


  3. Apples. Cheese. Bread. Green beans. Olive oil. Will there be salt and pepper available? I hope so. I’ll want them, too. And coffee or tea? Those are beverages, so maybe they don’t count in the 5 food tally.


  4. OK, before I can even begin to answer this I need to know if it a one-time consignment that has to last and last, or a daily menu that can be changed. This matters! 🙂

    There needs to be fruit: apples for preference but one of the heritage variety and not the modern marketing man’s idea of an apple. Definitely not Golden Delicious which is neither golden nor delicious.

    There needs to be nuts: preferably walnuts, preferably ready shelled although the milky crunch of new walnuts freshly shelled is beyond compare.

    Cheese, of course and yes, not the plastic-wrapped plastic apology for cheese. Red Leicester would be a good choice providing I was allowed some pickles alongside.

    Salad leaves, possibly mixed. I have discovered that young beetroot leaves make an acceptable substitute for spinach, but I would like to include a lettuce (NOT Iceberg) and perhaps some peppery rocket.

    Bread, of course. If we are limited to a one-time consignment then it would need to be a granary batch. If we can substitute on a daily basis then I’d include sourdough, focaccia and ciabatta on a rota.

    I’m assuming that condiments, olive oil and curry powder would be automagically included.

    If I can’t have walnuts I’ll have rice.


  5. @breakerofthings – I did not know that about Popeye 😀 What a swizz, I’ll have to re-think my green leafy vegetable/iron source!


  6. LA, I’d have chosen eggs too for their excellent protein content and the varied ways in which they can be cooked. For some reason I assumed there would be no cooking facilities, so whatever it was had to be eaten – and enjoyed – in its raw state. But yeah “cheese cause it’s cheese” is the best reason in the world 🙂 Also love your addition of butter cookies – good call!


  7. Ally, I assumed beverages were separate … but olive oil is an interesting addition. I do love to dunk a hunk of bread in some good quality olive oil, so I cannot argue with that choice of yours at all 😀 As for condiments, I’d hope so too, although have been learning to live without salt due to Himself’s diagnosis with uber high blood pressure earlier this year. I do miss it though – hugely – but am trying to be supportive. We have been using a lot more spices in cooking as a result, but I miss it on eggs.


  8. Alan, I assumed that the list would be a one-time thing, but that the meal would be repeatedly made up from that list. Like you, I’d hope that variations of the listed items would be provided within the daily menu, but the prompt didn’t specify. I suspect that’s why so many people have opted for cheese – in the hope that the massive selection of options available would mean they’d experience variety.


  9. Part 2!

    I suddenly realized whilst eating my evening meal last night that I – dedicated carnivore* that I am – had gone vegetarian in my list! 😦 Where was the bacon and eggs; where the pork chop, the steak and mushrooms, the veal and ham pie?

    Sorry, if it’s a one-time list I a’int going!

    * Ok, Ok – it’s omnivore really


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