How The Hell Do You Make Cornflakes?

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Years ago there was a TV series which I can’t remember the name of now that basically followed survivors of a nuclear war, now I don’t recall much about this it must be at least 20 years ago now but something of it has always stuck in my mind. First was how they survived which was because they were in the same railway carriage as a scientist who was carrying some kind of freezing gas, the train was in a tunnel as the nuclear weapons hit and the canisters of gas are set off as the train derails in the tunnel and they are effectively sealed and frozen in this carriage for 10 years.

The other things I remember are 2 small parts of one or other of the series episodes, one is just a line, someone saying “children are going to grow up without knowing what an orange or banana looks or tastes like” or something to that effect and the other is a scene where a man is actually selling food from the back of a large van, taking money in the hope of being rich in the event of things getting back to normal. This memory often pops into my mind however briefly when I’m thinking of how things are made or where they come from. All these things we take for granted that are there as if by magic I put into two groups that’s the grown and the made. With the grown there’s not so much mystery its trees or plants, comes out of the ground subject to climate etc, some of which of course are the raw materials for the made.

As a person who would ideally like to understand and know everything there’s plenty of scope for interest, I am of course at the moment thinking in terms of food and drink but I am just as interested in finding out how a bridge is built for instance. When not typing I am sipping a cup of coffee, granulated and instant, ready in a jar, I have no idea how it was made and these days I hope I can be forgiven for wondering if it’s ever been a coffee bean or even something that once was beside one. Cornflakes I put in the title because I did see a documentary a while ago and I hoped to get you thinking “you open the box, empty them into a bowl, add sugar (or not) and pour milk over them. The documentary had a short snippet showing a bit about how they are made, not much detail I only remember big cylindrical drums where involved and steam being mentioned.

Chocolates have just popped to mind how do they get the fillings in the middle?, I’m thinking liqueur here as much as anything else, there’s a circular maize snack I eat quite a lot, maize seems to be something you can mould into any shape, right now I realise that if raw maize was in front of me I wouldn’t know it. Lets here it for all these things that make life just plain nice, complicated or not I’m a fan even if I don’t like to eat or drink it myself. Maybe, I think, I will look up some of these things…….you have been warned.


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