Sunday, August 16, 2015

Going Back to the Wartime Farm and the Wartime Kitchen and Garden

As I sit and crochet I have been enjoying two series of YouTube Videos related to the home front in Britain during WWII.  I have always been a history buff and as I grow older I have become more interested in how people coped during the difficult days of The Great Depression and WWII.  There are lessons to be learned here that we actually might be called upon to use during some of our darker financial days.

Although, even I can not see myself making a substitute mayonnaise using boiled potato, mustard, salt, vinegar and oil.  If I don't have the egg I think I would rather do without.  I know, heretical.  I also cannot see myself eating steamed nettles in place of other green leafy veg.  Or, the "black bread" made with silage as the raising agent instead of yeast.  Nope.  NOT going to happen.  Even I have limits with food experimentation.

But, I might try the slices of corned beef encased in stiff mashed potato and then covered with a white sauce and baked.  That actually sounds rather good and VERY filling.  I also might try the leek pudding which is basically seasoned chopped leeks encased in pastry and cooked until very golden brown.   Or the baked chocolate cake type pudding sweetened mainly with grated carrot and only a very small amount of the precious sugar ration.  Sounds yummy to me.

I was interested to see how people improvised needed machine parts from odd  bits and pieces; made toy airplanes out of tin cans; learned to make clay roof tiles to repair buildings when commercial tile was unavailable; wove baskets from willow locally harvested, and so much more.  This often required learning new skills never before contemplated but necessity gave them no other choice. 

I wonder if I would have the stamina, mental and physical, to get the job done today if required.  One can only hope. 

But, in the spirit of the thing, I am off to work on my mock meat for dinner:  mock Italian sausage patties made from barley flakes cooked in beef broth and seasoned with fennel, garlic, onion, thyme, sage and a pinch of cayenne.  It actually might work.

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