Methinks yesterday’s legal-inspired menu is calling to be followed up with another theme-dinner. I give you a menu from an Engineer Officers Training Camp in Virginia.
SECTION B. COMPANY 1
CAMP A. A. HUMPHREYS, VA
JANUARY 31, 1919
COME AND GET IT
DONE IN THE FOLLOWING MANNER
Hoist Down That Flag Pick Up Your Brass
BLUE POINT COCKTAIL
CELERY A LA ABATTIS OLIVES DRAB
SHRAPNEL SOUP HOPPE NO. 9
8TH SQUAD SALAD PICKLES
A LA SHRIMP 1ST SQUAD DILL
SALMON (not from the Q.M) SARDINES (Close Order)
Continue the March
ROLLS (Bedding) HARD TACK
MESS HALL HASH SQUARE EGGS
HOMINY HOT DOGS
E.O.T.S YAMS ASPARAGUS (long balks)
TURKEY ROASTED (Gorelangton Style)
Flankers HAM (as you were) Flankers
POHICK CRANBERRIES ACCOTINC DRESSING
PUMPKIN PIE (open faced) PERSIMMONS (home grown)
NUTS (volunteers) CHEESE (porous knit)
ICE CREAM CAKE
COFFEE (not chemically treated)
For Smokers For Chewers
CAMELS BLACK JACK
FATIMAS TUTTI FRUTTI
For Those Who Neither Smoke or Chew
DEWITT’S LITTLE EARLY RISERS
NORMAL SIGHT 20-20
The actual dishes served at this dinner will remain a mystery of course. They were no doubt regular dishes simply re-named for the occasion.
So, to keep the military theme, I give you recipes from the same era in another country.
From the Examiner (Launceston, Tasmania, Australia) of 1 October, 1941:-
Most families have a soldier relation at the war, or an airman or a sailor, and at this time of the year cakes and puddings are being made to send to the men overseas. This week the cash prize has been awarded for recipes for a soldier's cake and a soldier's pudding. The recipes were sent in by Mrs. J. J. Glover, Scone Street, Perth.
Half pound butter, ½ lb. sugar, 4 eggs, 3 tablespoons sherry, ½ lb. seeded raisins, ½ lb. currants, ½ lb. sultanas, 2oz peel, 2oz. blanched almonds, 10oz. plain flour, ½ teaspoon carb. soda, 1 dessertspoonful caramel or Parisian essence, 1 teaspoon spice.
Cream butter and sugar. Add well-beaten eggs gradually, then sherry. Then add well-sifted flour, carbonate of soda and spice, with well-prepared fruit. Add the caramel. Turn into prepared tin and place in a hot oven; turn heat down very low and allow to cook slowly from 2 ½ to 3 hours. To test the cake place a skewer through the thickest part and if it comes out quite free from cake mixture the cake is cooked. Remove from oven and allow to remain in tin until cold. Approximately 3 ½ lb. cake when baked.
Half lb. plain flour, ½ cup breadcrumbs, ½ lb. sugar, ½ lb. butter, ½ lb. raisins, ½ lb. sultanas, 2oz. peel, 2oz almonds, 2oz. cherries, 2 tablespoons rum or sherry, 1 teaspoon carbonate of soda, spice to taste. Sift flour and spice, rub in the butter, add sugar and fruits, mix with eggs and spirits, lastly add dissolved soda. Three-quarters fill dried milk or treacle tins, well-greased, place lids on firmly. Boil three hours or steam five hours. On day of using boil one hour. Open round edge of tin. Serve with cream or sauce.
Funny. A book that I own on patterns of 18th & 19th c silver flatware illustrates one rare mid-19th century pattern with a quite heavily-mangled dinner fork. The author observes that the fork is engraved with the crest of a British regiment and remarks that generally speaking, officers' mess regimental flatware tends to have been subjected to a pretty high level of abuse.
On Michigan State University's Feeding America website they have a reproduction of a turn of the (last) century army cookbook. Dishes include Bombshells, Cannonballs, and Artillery Pie.
The last recipe instructs us to "mix with eggs", doesn't specify the quantity with the ingredients.
I'm guessing 4-5, thereby making the dish a boiled pudding version of the original pound cake, containing equal weight of flour/butter/sugar/eggs, + additions?
I had to look up "Dewitt's Little Early Risers." Turns out they're a "laxative and cathartic" (the Smithsonian has a tube). I guess if you don't smoke or chew you're probably a teetotaler as well and, er, "clean."
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