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    • bouicca21
    • By bouicca21 1st Feb 18, 11:41 AM
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    bouicca21
    Proper old style! Living on WW2 rations
    • #1
    • 1st Feb 18, 11:41 AM
    Proper old style! Living on WW2 rations 1st Feb 18 at 11:41 AM
    The initial problem is that there is no such thing as a definitive list of rations. There was also a points system which is even harder to track down. And of course even if something was theoretically available on the ratio/points system, shortages meant that it wasn't necessarily available in the shops.

    But I am nothing if not determined and the idea isn't to impose hardship on myself but to live frugally and healthily.

    I managed to find a list of rations and points as of 1 December 1942. So:
    .
    4 oz Bacons and ham
    8oz sugar
    6 oz butter and margarine of which not more than 2 oz to be butter
    2 oz cooking fat
    2 oz tea
    12 old pence of meat (I reckon this is about 2.50 at today's values)
    8oz cheese (vegetarians, certain categories of workers in E agricultural workers and miners, sufferers from diabetes mellitus or pituitary diabetes got 16 oz)
    4 oz Jam, marmalade, syrup, mincemeat or treacle
    3 oz sweets and chocolate

    Points per 1 lb of
    1 plain biscuits; 2 sweet biscuits; 4 chocolate biscuits
    16 dried fruit
    4 prunes
    8 syrup
    32 grade 1 or 2 Canned salmon; 16 for grade 3
    12 canned herrings in tomato sauce; ditto for pilchards in tomTo sauce
    8 canned pilchards in brine
    4 sago, rice etc
    4 cereal
    8 Tinned sweetened milk
    6 medium tin tomatoes
    8 large tin tomatoes
    4 tin Beans in tomato sauce
    1 tin beans in brine
    Bread not rationed. Nor is offal or fresh fish, fresh fruit.

    Additionally I think everyone got the equivalent of 4 pints of milk (1 pint fresh, 3 dried) and 4 eggs (also 1 fresh and 3 dried) a week.

    Somewhere in the net it says it was 16 points a week.

    People complained about being forced to use wheatmeal flour and eat wheatmeal bread, but the interesting thing about this list is that, given no shortages, it is actually quite easy. Obviously you have to have some vegetarian/vegan meals regularly. No problem about getting your 5 a day! Dried pulses were either ration free or 8 points for 1 lb (not sure which). In the spirit rather than the letter of the system, I'm happily substituting puy lentils for the orange ones that were the only lentils my mother knew of.

    I've done a month. Saved lots of money! Aim to do it for February too and there are some dishes, like vegetable and lentil shepherds pie that will stay in my repertoire, long after the self imposed WW2 challenge is over.
Page 4
    • bouicca21
    • By bouicca21 6th Feb 18, 10:13 PM
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    bouicca21
    I loved rose hip and syrup of figs too. Fortunately no cod liver oil in our house.
    • JackieO
    • By JackieO 7th Feb 18, 9:48 AM
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    JackieO
    I remember being dosed up every Friday night for some reason with Califonia syrup of figs and if you had been grumpy of bad temempered Mum would say 'dose of syrup of figs for you child, get rid of your bad temper ' rose hip syrup my late dad would make himself for us kids, but then he was a chemist which helped I guess. he also had a big bottle of what we called "the black bottle" it cured virtually all ills and it tasted disgusting, and if you thought you could wangle a crafty day off of school out would come the "black bottle' and even the threat of this revolting stuff was enough to make you feel better and want to go to school

    I also remember some vile green stuff called I think Minadex which was given after an illness to get you appetite back, that too was an incentive to eat rather than have a dose of this 'tonic'

    Strepsils or penicillin tablets for a sore throat, and my late Mu swore by a hot lemon PLJ drink every morning which gave me a love for anything lemony. Cod liver oil caplsules at school at milk break time I only once bit into one to see what it tasted like and everything tasted horrible for ages afterwards.
    Beechams powders cured all ills when I was small, and pink germolene in a tiny tin for knocks and scrape on your knees

    We rarely went to a Drs at all as my Dad would cure us with something from his shop. I remember being terrified when I saw a Dr for the first time as I had rheumatic fever when I was about 10, and there was talk of going into hospital and then a convalescent home and I was petrified that I was going to be away from my Mum, and for some reason I wouldn't be able to return home. Thankfully Mum said 'No she would nurse me at home' which she did. I am still not keen on going to the Drs even now well over 60 + years later
    Quot Libros,Quam Breve Tempus.
    2018 Food spend so far this year Three months totals 96.53 April 8.98 . this morning short shop was 5.62 only bought essentials
    • bouicca21
    • By bouicca21 7th Feb 18, 10:14 AM
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    bouicca21
    Big bottle of black stuff? Our doctor prescribed something disgusting like that all the time. His repertoire consisted of yellow pills or the black stuff. You had it by the tablespoon and it was horrible, horrible, horrible.
    • monnagran
    • By monnagran 7th Feb 18, 10:20 AM
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    monnagran
    Ditto JackieO. Except that my dreaded tonics were Parish's Food, full of iron and had to be drunk through a straw because it did dire things to teeth, and Scots Emulsion, that had the appearance and consistency of milk of magnesia plus a very strong fishy taste. I date my hatred of fish to being forced to take spoonsful of the revolting stuff in a bid to build me up.
    I wish they hadn't bothered, I've been attempting to 'unbuild' myself ever since.

    Like you, a small round tin of pink Germolene cured everything. The modern tubes don't even come close.

    We'd better be careful. Sooner or later some spoil sport will be along to remind us that this is a thread about rationed food and our peaceful trip along Nostalgia Lane will be stopped abruptly.
    I believe that friends are quiet angels
    Who lift us to our feet when our wings
    Have trouble remembering how to fly.
    • bouicca21
    • By bouicca21 7th Feb 18, 10:26 AM
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    bouicca21
    Monna, I take up the challenge to get back to rations. Had loads of over ripe tomatoes to use up so made puttanesca. Can't find out whether anchovies were on points during the war, but according to the Times they were 2 points in 1946 before
    coming off the points system later that year. So I think puttanesca is authentic, even though I can't imagine my mum ever making it.
    • bouicca21
    • By bouicca21 7th Feb 18, 1:56 PM
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    bouicca21
    From a patriotic ad by the Stork margarine company, Oct 1940, 'in the confident belief that when victory has been finally achieved Stork Margarine will once again be available to the discerning housewife.' It doesn't tell you how long to steam it for!

    Savoury pudding
    2 sheep's hearts
    2 sheep's kidneys
    2 tablesp seasoned flour (flour mixed with 1 salt spoonful salt, tsp pepper)
    1 tablesp chopped fresh mixed herbs
    8 oz self raising flour
    4 oz chopped suet or dripping
    tsp salt
    Water

    Cut hearts and kidneys into small pieces and toss in seasoned flour.
    Mix suet with flour (or rub in dripping), mix with water to a stiff paste.
    Use of the paste to line a pudding basin.
    Pack in the meat, scattering chopped herbs between layers.
    Add a little cold water for gravy and cover with remaining paste.
    • bouicca21
    • By bouicca21 7th Feb 18, 2:05 PM
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    bouicca21
    Another from Stork

    Fig and apple pudding without eggs

    4 oz suet or cooking fat
    1 large cooking apple, peeled and cored
    8 oz figs
    4 oz stale breadcrumbs
    3 oz self raising flour
    2.5 gills milk [a gill is 0.25 pint according to Wikipedia]

    Chop or mince suet, apple and figs together.
    Mix them thoroughly.
    In another basin pour the milk over the breadcrumbs, then mix soaked breadcrumbs and fruit together.
    Add the flour.
    Steam for 2 and half hours.
    Serve with honey, golden syrup or custard.
    • monnagran
    • By monnagran 7th Feb 18, 3:00 PM
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    monnagran
    Oh bouicca, I still have my mum's Wartime Stork Cookery Book. It's falling apart, extremely battered and very precious.

    I have quite a few reprints of wartime cookery books but most of the authentic ones did a runner during one of my moves. I can only assume that it was an accident as anyone who knows me would know how I treasured those grubby, stained, well used books and leaflets.

    The only one that I tried in vain to find was a booklet by Elsie and Doris Walters -- Gert and Daisy. They used to broadcast on The Kitchen Front.
    I believe that friends are quiet angels
    Who lift us to our feet when our wings
    Have trouble remembering how to fly.
    • JackieO
    • By JackieO 7th Feb 18, 10:49 PM
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    JackieO
    .

    The only one that I tried in vain to find was a booklet by Elsie and Doris Walters -- Gert and Daisy. They used to broadcast on The Kitchen Front.
    Originally posted by monnagran
    Wern't they Jack Warners sisters ??? him of Dock Green fame
    Quot Libros,Quam Breve Tempus.
    2018 Food spend so far this year Three months totals 96.53 April 8.98 . this morning short shop was 5.62 only bought essentials
    • Prinzessilein
    • By Prinzessilein 8th Feb 18, 8:25 AM
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    Prinzessilein
    Wern't they Jack Warners sisters ??? him of Dock Green fame
    Originally posted by JackieO
    Indeed they were!

    I am loving this thread!

    I was born after the War...but to parents who had both lived through it - and as money was always tight, Mum used much of her experience in helping to stretch the pennies.

    Her war-time memories will be slightly different to many of those here....as she was from Germany. I know that bread was rationed in Germany during the War - and if I am right, then it was never rationed in the UK?(From what I have read, the UK was encouraged to eat wholemeal bread...the 'National' loaf....and I think there was some rationing AFTER the War but not during)

    Mum tells how she grumbled once to her Mum (my Omi) about the lack of food....she had a real hankering after a 'proper' sandwich!...Omi went into the kitchen and returned with a plate of sliced meat and cheese with bread....Mum's eyes lit up and she made grabby-hands...only for Omi to place it in front of her and explain that this was a week's rations, Mum COULD use it for her between-meal sandwich snack, but then there would be nothing for the rest of the week!

    The fish-oil thing was still going strong when I was young...but we were lucky!...we had ours in the form of haliborange.

    I also have fond memories of malt tablets...you would suck them like sweets...they were very sweet, but I loved the warm-maltiness. ...and they supposedly were 'healthy' for us.
    • monnagran
    • By monnagran 8th Feb 18, 8:43 AM
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    monnagran
    Wern't they Jack Warners sisters ??? him of Dock Green fame
    Originally posted by JackieO
    As Prinzessilein says, yes they were. I loved them on the radio, they often turned up on Workers Playtime.

    I had two hens called Gert and Daisy. Their chicken run mates were Hinge and Bracket and French and Saunders.
    I believe that friends are quiet angels
    Who lift us to our feet when our wings
    Have trouble remembering how to fly.
    • Ilona
    • By Ilona 8th Feb 18, 10:05 AM
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    Ilona
    I don't know if anyone is interested but there is a Blogger who is living on war rations for the rest of this year, in a bid to save enough to pay off her mortgage. She is documenting everything, growing her own and recipes, with a breakdown of all her costs. Worth a look.

    http://achallengingyearonawelshhillside.blogspot.co.uk/2018/02/rations-and-points-overview.html

    Ilona
    I love skip diving
    • mardatha
    • By mardatha 9th Feb 18, 9:44 PM
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    mardatha
    Monna my hens were Hinge and Bracket too
    • JackieO
    • By JackieO 10th Feb 18, 10:24 AM
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    JackieO
    Ilona what an interesting blog thanks for that I have bookmarked it. I was listening on the car radio yesterday and they did an obit for Hannah Hauxwell who died at 91 last week when her life was on TV as a hill farmer she was living on a fiver a week !! but what an amazing lady she was I would love to have met her as she seemed so relaxed and unfussed about her life
    Perhaps thats why the return of the OS ways are so popular and although I remember war time rationing very well I don't think I would want to return to the strictures it placed on people.)I enjoy my spices too much ) but cutting back on over consumption wouldn't be a bad idea for a lot of folk. Perhaps its the return of basic cooking that is the pull or making the most of what you have, and adapting things in recipes. To me a well cooked HM meal is also a comforting thing for so many folk I would much rather eat hot buttered toast than a burger and chips from a take-away in a cardboard box but them I am pretty OS myself
    Quot Libros,Quam Breve Tempus.
    2018 Food spend so far this year Three months totals 96.53 April 8.98 . this morning short shop was 5.62 only bought essentials
    • joedenise
    • By joedenise 10th Feb 18, 10:50 AM
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    joedenise
    Ilona what an interesting blog thanks for that I have bookmarked it. I was listening on the car radio yesterday and they did an obit for Hannah Hauxwell who died at 91 last week when her life was on TV as a hill farmer she was living on a fiver a week !! but what an amazing lady she was I would love to have met her as she seemed so relaxed and unfussed about her life
    Perhaps thats why the return of the OS ways are so popular and although I remember war time rationing very well I don't think I would want to return to the strictures it placed on people.)I enjoy my spices too much ) but cutting back on over consumption wouldn't be a bad idea for a lot of folk. Perhaps its the return of basic cooking that is the pull or making the most of what you have, and adapting things in recipes. To me a well cooked HM meal is also a comforting thing for so many folk I would much rather eat hot buttered toast than a burger and chips from a take-away in a cardboard box but them I am pretty OS myself
    Originally posted by JackieO
    You and me both Jackie! Fortunately I love cooking so make HM meals most days, although I do batch cook so some meals come from freezer but still cook the carb part & veg to go with it!

    Denise
    • PipneyJane
    • By PipneyJane 14th Feb 18, 1:36 PM
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    PipneyJane
    I don't know if anyone is interested but there is a Blogger who is living on war rations for the rest of this year, in a bid to save enough to pay off her mortgage. She is documenting everything, growing her own and recipes, with a breakdown of all her costs. Worth a look.

    http://achallengingyearonawelshhillside.blogspot.co.uk/2018/02/rations-and-points-overview.html

    Ilona
    Originally posted by Ilona

    Thank you! I'll have a read.


    To the OP, good luck with your challenge. I've only just found this thread so have some catching up to do before I can chime in properly.


    A decade or so ago, I was lucky enough to attend a talk by Marguerite Patton about cooking during the war years. (It was at the Cabinet War Rooms.) I have her war time recipes cookbooks. The only thing I recall making were some "Carrot Cookies" which came out similar to rock cakes and prompted my husband to utter the immortal words "I don't like Frugals. I don't like any kind of greens!" when I told him it was a good, frugal recipe.


    - Pip
    "Be the type of woman that when you get out of bed in the morning, the devil says 'Oh crap. She's up.' "

    C.R.A.P R.O.L.L.Z. #47 Official Brain Harvesting Body Counter
    • bouicca21
    • By bouicca21 14th Feb 18, 3:35 PM
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    bouicca21
    I had thoughts of trying carrot cookies but I am doing so well with the sugar ration that I don't need to bother. Perhaps just as well judging by your husband's reaction. I also ended the week with a spare egg, butter, a couple of crusts of bread and milk. So I rediscovered the delights of bread and butter pudding, made a rice pudding with the rest of the milk and made a crumble topping to go with the apricots that I got cheap in the market.

    Feeling smug.
    Last edited by bouicca21; 14-02-2018 at 5:09 PM.
    • MrsLurcherwalker
    • By MrsLurcherwalker 14th Feb 18, 4:19 PM
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    MrsLurcherwalker
    Carrot cookies are yummy as are the oatmeal macaroons in the Marguerite Patten Victory cookbook. I make them because we like them as much as because they're economical.
    Thumpers mum was right - if you can't find anything nice to say don't say anything at all!
    • mardatha
    • By mardatha 14th Feb 18, 8:44 PM
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    mardatha
    MrsL the oatmeal macaroons sound lovely
    • PipneyJane
    • By PipneyJane 15th Feb 18, 2:26 PM
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    PipneyJane
    Flour wasn't actually rationed but people were dissuaded from using it due to the difficulties in shipping wheat. What there was consisted of whole wheat flour that was not universally loved! Just because it wasn't rationed didn't mean that it was always available. The baker was only allowed so much and instead of having daily deliveries of bread, (by horse and cart) ours only called 3 times a week. People could be prosecuted for throwing crusts out for birds.
    There was a big campaign to get people to eat more potatoes, you may have heard of the cartoon character Potato Pete, to replace the carbohydrate lost from not having as much bread. We could grow our own potatoes.
    The National loaf was grey and gritty. People used to white bread hated it. It was never rationed during the war, but it was in 1946 when austerity began to bite and we were helping to feed the starving millions in Europe, many our recent enemies.

    Here ends the history lesson.
    Originally posted by monnagran

    From what I've read, rationing got considerably tighter after the war, with the rations in 1947 being the smallest. It had to be done - there was very little food to go around, much of Europe had been devastated and labour was going into rebuilding, not into farming. Additionally, much merchant shipping had been devastated and docks destroyed, so even if a country could buy (say) Australian wheat, there was no guarantee that it'd be shipped or that there would be a dock available at which to unload it.


    What is rarely discussed now is how much both Wars cost Britain. The country did not recover during the 20 years in between. In fact, we haemorrhaged money because, as well as paying for the Great War, we'd acquired a lot of almost bankrupt German colonies that had to be supported.


    During WW2, while they were still standing on the sidelines, the Americans made a lot of money out of us. We virtually gave them our gold reserves. Once they joined the war effort, the terms of the lend-lease program meant that Britain was still paying off the debt decades later. (I understand that the final war debt was repaid in the 1990's!)


    In some respect, I think we're still living with the financial consequences. I can't think of any other reason why the country is still so poor when it is currently the sixth largest economy in the world. (source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economy_of_the_United_Kingdom) In 1946, we were bankrupt. We didn't have the money to invest in our infrastructure or in modernising our factories*. What else can explain why Germany continues to have such a strong manufacturing sector, when we don't? They were totally rebuilt after the war, while we weren't. Interestingly, Wikipedia tells me that we were the largest recipient of Marshall Plan money, getting about 20% of the total pot. Nobody ever mentions that.


    I had thoughts of trying carrot cookies but I am doing so well with the sugar ration that I don't need to bother. Perhaps just as well judging by your husband's reaction. I also ended the week with a spare egg, butter, a couple of crusts of bread and milk. So I rediscovered the delights of bread and butter pudding, made a rice pudding with the rest of the milk and made a crumble topping to go with the apricots that I got cheap in the market.

    Feeling smug.
    Originally posted by bouicca21

    DH was just kidding when he said "I don't like Frugals! I don't like any kind of greens!". He has a sweet tooth and had been looking forward to eating something akin to regular cookies, so was disappointed when they turned out to be rock cakes and not half as sweet. They were lovely split open and lightly toasted, with a little butter spread on top.


    - Pip






    * There were other factors involved, too, such as wasting what money there was trying to hold onto colonies instead of pushing them to independence. But even factoring in that, I can't completely explain why a comparable colonial power like France did far better after the war than we did and continues to do so. (Like sibling rivals, Britain always compares itself to France and usually says "see? We're doing it better", whatever "it" is.) I really don't know the reason why Britain still acts as if it is living one pay-cheque to another, with some of the most deprived municipalities in the EU. (Tower Hamlets, for example.)
    "Be the type of woman that when you get out of bed in the morning, the devil says 'Oh crap. She's up.' "

    C.R.A.P R.O.L.L.Z. #47 Official Brain Harvesting Body Counter
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