Today, August 7th …
With the War under way, the employees of the British Ministry of Food must have been working overtime by August 1940. Some lessons learned in the First War were put to good use, as this newspaper article from this day in 1940 shows:
WASTING FOOD AN OFFENCE.
An Order under which it will be an offence punishable by fine or imprisonment, or both, to waste food was made yesterday, and will come into force next Monday. Mr. Boothby, Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Food, said that it closely resemble a similar one made in the last War. Cases brought under that Order included the following:-
A woman who fed 14 dogs on bread and milk, fined ₤5.
Another woman who gave meat to a St. Bernard dog, fined ₤10.
A workman who left a loaf of bread in a cottage from which he moved, fined ₤20.
A furnaceman who, dissatisfied with his dinner, threw the potatoes in the fire, fined ₤10.
A woman who burned stale bread on her lawn, fined ₤5.
A farmer who fed seven stone of rock cakes to his pigs, fined ₤10.
Another farmer who fed his stock on bread, imprisoned for three months.
Under the present Order the penalties will be: On summary conviction, imprisonment not exceeding three months, or a fine not exceeding ₤100, or both. .... Mr Boothby said that the Order was not intended as a scourge, but only as a general direction to the public not to waste food. “It is not going to be harshly interpreted,” he said “I can guarantee that.”
The farmer feeding rock cakes to the pigs caught my eye - that is a lot of rock cakes (a stone is 14 lb). Was Mrs Farmer a terrible cook? More likely a local baker supplied them. Did the baker get fined too?
I always thought the name ‘Rock Cakes’ sounded unappetising and not salesworthy. Rock Cakes are something between a scone and a muffin – quick cakes which don’t keep well. Perhaps some of the older housewives of WW II pulled out this recipe from their clippings – it is taken from a newspaper milk advertisement of 1919.
Libby’s Orange Rock Cakes.
Mix together 8 oz of flour and 4 oz of sugar. Grate in the rind of one small orange and add a pinch of carbonate of soda. Stir in gradually the juice of an orange, a cupful of Libby’s Milk, and one well-beaten egg. Half fill small buttered tins and bake 15 minutes in a moderate oven.
Tomorrow’s Story …
Quotation for the Day ….
My mother didn't really cook. But she did make key lime pie, until the day the top of the evaporated milk container accidentally ended up in the pie and she decided cooking took too much concentration. William Norwich.