Tuesday, October 08, 2013

1943 in the Kitchen, at the Shops, and in the Larder.

The British Food Ministry published hundreds of Food Facts leaflets over the course of World War II, and a number of them have featured in previous posts here. Leaflet number 130 was published in The Times on New Year’s Day in 1943, and it summarised some of the plans and suggestions for the year ahead.

The leaflet featured a ‘Poet’s Corner’ which began with an amusing cautionary tale about wasting food, and continued with two more rhymes on the same theme.

Aunty Threw Her Rinds Away,
To the lock-up she was taken.
There she is and there she’ll stay
Till she learns to save her bacon.
When in winter Nature limits what the cows hold
Your trusty grocer helps you out with ‘Household.’
Don’t waste fuel
On a vegetabuel;
It’s more to your credit
To shred it.


1.      See that each one of the family has his own full rations, and remember this includes Dried Egg and Household Milk. Make the most of your cheese ration.
2.      Eat at least 1 lb. of potatoes every day. Don’t peel them. Cook them in your skins. They are better for you and tastier too.
3.      Eat plenty of green vegetables and salads, and when you cant get greens eat root vegetables, especially swedes and carrots.
4.      Cook your vegetables the modern way. Use very little boiling water. Shred or slice your vegetables first. Cook very quickly with the lid on. Eat as soon as cooked.

5.      Do your shopping in as few bits as possible. It will save the shopkeeper’s time and paper. Try and buy a week’s supply of goods at one time. This isn’t easy for you, but your shopkeeper, who is very short-handed, will be very grateful.
6.      Take paper or piece of cloth to wrap your shopping in. Especially save paper at the butcher’s whenever possible.
7.      Always return milk bottles well rinsed and don’t forget to save the milk bottle caps for the milkman.

8.      Don’t throw away a scrap of food. Bits of leftover fish or vegetables make splendid sandwich fillings. Odds and ends of bread can be used in puddings. Use cheese rind for flavouring sauces. Shred the outside leaves of cabbages and use them in soups and stews.
9.      Don’t hoard your Dried Egg. It is meant to be used now. Keep it in a cool dry place.
10. Dont forget to ask for your Household Milk at the grocers. And read the instructions on the tin before you use it.

The recipe for the day is from another Food Facts leaflet, No. 118, in October 1942.

Savoury Loaf.
Cooking time: 1 ½ hours.
Ingredients: 1 rasher bacon, ½ steak or ¼ lb. cold meat, liver, or kidney if possible, 2 carrots, 2 oz. oatmeal, ¼ lb. mashed potato, 1 teaspoonful Worcester sauce, 1 tablespoonful vegetable stock, 1 reconstituted dried egg, salt and pepper.
Quantity: Four helpings.

Method: Mince meat, bacon, carrots. Mix in mashed potato, egg, oatmeal, Worcester sauce, salt, pepper, and stock to form a stiff mixture. Put mixture into well-greased basin. Cover, steam for 1 ½ hours. 15 mins. Before serving put green vegetable in same saucepan. Serve with the loaf. This can be served cold with salad. If you have a steamer, cook a pudding over the saucepan.

1 comment:

A Kitchen Witch said...

how neat it is to see how times have changed. :) Thanks for sharing.