Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Day 19


Porridge or Jam on Toast


Cheese Sandwiches or Bread & Dripping*


Cheese, Leek and Potato (Homity) Pie

As we mention to people along the way about being on rations we get a few 'Oh have you tried?' or ' I remember...' *Bread and Dripping was the suggestion of the lady that runs the local vintage clothing store :) Todays supper was a rather successful homity pie! Hot and filling it was well welcomed!!
Homity Pies were invented by the Land Girls in the Second World War using the ingredients they could grow in the fields. I've been making these for years without knowing the history of them!

Day 18

Sorry Blogger isn't letting me upload photos today! :(

Todays Menu is a direct result of a real 1940s style shortage at the butcher!! I went in to our local butcher earlier in the week and asked for OxTail. He didn't have any but would order some in from his supplier. I went back today and found out his supplier had none either - bother!! As I walked out the door I uttered those words I had been dreading since the start of this experiment...."You haven't got any rabbit instead have you?" Of course being a country village - he did!

It shouldn't have but my heart sank. A few people have told me how rabbit got them through the war, either wild or from the garden, rabbit pie was a weekly dish in the country. So I hid my sqeamishness, asked the butcher to chop it into 'unidentifyable portions' and took ine home to make rabbit and ham pie for supper.


Toast & Marmalade


Soup & Bread


Rabbit & Ham Pie, Kale and Mash

I told the kids it was chicken thighs and ham! The children had thirds and asked to take it cold for lunch the next day!!!

Thursday, 23 February 2012

A Lovely Surprise - the kindness of strangers...

This morning, when I  returned from the school run I had a cryptic message from hubby. I need you to come  quickly and pick something (me?) up. My mind raced was he hurt? I've occasionaly had to collect him from work when hes hurt himself and can't drive. Had the cat gone to work with him? We lost sweetie for a week before xmas because she'd hid in the van and got out at a customers in the next village, without hubby knowing!! Or was he giving another unwanted pet a home? Don't laugh I never know who he will bring home next!!
Anyway, it was none of the above, it was a gift from one of his elderly customers. He'd told he what we were doing and our interest in the 1940s and ww2. She had several used ration books in her home and gave him one to bring home! Hubby didn't want to damage it and was very excited , thats why he had asked me to come and collect it from him!!

She'd even written a list inside for me of what was rationed and what was not available. We have a couple of repro books, but no real ones, used ones!! I'm over the moon with this gift!

I'm hoping to bake the lady some cakes to say thank you! How very kind of her.

{Wartime Recipe} Potato Floddies

Someone asked what these were, sorry cant find the comment now to say who  :( but here you are.....

A kind of potato Cake Floodies are to have originated from canal workers who cooked them on a shovel over the fire!

Grate a raw potato into a bowl , you can also add grated carrot. Sprinkle with flour and add household milk (milk made from powder) or milk from rationsuntil a batter is made. Spoon into a hot frying pan and cook until golden turning halfway through.

These can then be served warm with sugar for a sweet snack or as they are for a belly-warming elevenses!!

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Day 17

Today, as funny noises came from my NEW breadmaker, I caved in a bought a new food processor. I made a bread dough in it and baked a small loaf. Neither doughs seemed to rise well - maybe too cold? So I now have 2 small loaves for us tomorrow. If the processor one is good as or better than the troubled breadmaker loaf, I will return the bm and not replace it!


Bread and Jam or Flakes


Soup or sandwiches -cheese and chutney


Jacket potatoes and sausages

Today was pretty difficult, dizzle all day, miserable moods, we kinda fell in a slump and resorted to full strength tea (we've been having 1/2 amouynts to make it go further) and dipping into our sweet rations a bit heavier!!

Day 16 - Pancake Day

Today was Pancake Day, traditionally a day to go wild with stacks of Pancakes - piled high and smothered in syrup!
Not today! Not willing to go pancake free today I looked at how we could make them a bit more ration friendly....

Batter - Well milk, flour,  eggs , if you have them from your rations use them, if not do as we did and use powdered egg instead of fresh and household (dried) milk made up.

Size - I swapped to our smallest pan and noone complained, possibly the didn't notice!!

Fillings - I'm a sugar & lemon girl so i just used a scant amount from our ration. Other fillings could be jam spread sparingly, or fruit compote.

Wanting to have a whole pancake meal for supper, I looked up for savoury pancake ideas and found one for a sausage and potato pancake (no batter in this recipe its just the pancake shape that gives it its name) I added carrot too and it made a great supper dish. This isn't the best photo but it was delicious and filling!


Toast & Jam


Lentil Soup & Bread


Sausage and Potato Pancake

Pancakes with lemon & sugar

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Is the World Trying to tell me something?

1940s Kitchen

Do you ever get the feeling the World is trying to tell you something? Now when I started this it was never going to be an actual recreation of an actual wartime existance, I live in a modern house with modern things! It was just to see if a modern family can live on the restrictions of a 1940s ration diet. But within the last week I have a distinct feeling the world is trying to tell me something.... first my breadmaker broke and yesterday my trusty food processor died! Ok these are nothing compared to bombs raining down overhead, but its blooming annoying. I'd love to just not replace them but due to problems with my wrist I really do rely on them!
Whats a girl to do?

Monday, 20 February 2012

Day 15 - Week 3 and weekly weigh-in

Well today marks our half way point in our journey!! A quick ask of the family and everyone is still pretty happy to be staying on the rations although we're all missing certain things....

Kids - Chocolate (no surprise there! funnily they only chose sweets for their rations not chocolate!)
Hubby - Snacks in between meals and beans on toast! And most of all bigger portions!
Me - Tinned Tomatoes - didn't expect it to be that did you! I used alot of tomatoes in my pre-ration cooking!

We weighed ourselves this morning...

Weight this week :-
Hubby  = - 0.2kg   overall =  +3.2kg
Me =  - 0.8kg        overall =  -1.9kg

I havent been very active this week and we've had more  'nice' food and puddings because of the birthday tea! So I'm pleased its a minus figure but not surprised its low.

A deliberate change this week has been to swap our plates to smaller ones - makeing the food look bigger / more!
Not so deliberate, i keep forgetting to take photos till we're half way through / finished!!!


Toast and Jam or  Cornflakes


Cheese Sandwiches or egg and cress sandwiches


Mashed Swede & Potato, Carrots, Gammon

Day 14


Bread and Honey or cornflakes


Savoury Onions and cheese on toast


Tea at Grannys (mostly non rationed goods)

Today we tried to spend some time at the allotment digging it over but yesterdays rain put pay to that! Instead we stayed inside and planned what we need to grow for the coming year instead!!

[Wartime Recipe} Mums Pork Rissoles

This is a recipe handed down to me from my mum (and probably from hers too!) so please excuse the lack of exact quantities!

Left Over Roast Pork - I used pork shoulder
Stale Bread made into breadcrumbs or Oats
1 Egg or Powdered egg made up

Mincer the pork in a mincer or food processor. Finely chop an onion and add to pork.  Add the egg and mix thoroughly. Next add enough breadcrumbs / oats to stiffen the mixture so you canmould  it. Roll into balls, flatten slightly and fry in lard until golden on both sides.

Serve with Wartime Champ for a lovely warming meal!

This recipe is pretty forgiving so play around with it a bit for variety. I think it would be lovely with some diced apple or grated carrot included!!

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Day 13

Honey Biccies


Bread and marmalade


Rissoles and wartime champ - leftovers from yesterday


Cauliflower cheese and baked potato

Potato floddies, honey biscuits

Day 12


Toast and jam


Ham and cheese !


Pork rissole and wartime champ

We had a bit of a disaster on the bread front today as the breadmaker died in the night! As a result I pulled a few slices of shop bought bread from the freezer, big mistake, it was hollow and empty and by lunchtime we were starving! We went out and brought a new one asap! We tried out the new meat Mincer today too! A bit of elbow grease needed but we got there in the end! Te resulting rissoles were gorgeous and definitely didn't feel like we were making do!

Friday, 17 February 2012

Valentines Day on Rations

Day 9 as well as being our daughters birthday, of course was valentines day!! No romantic meal out for us of course but hubby did have a rather nice surprise for me.....

Dressed in his USAAF uniform he brought me American chocolate!! How sweet!!  Not to be too naughty and so I didn't hurt his feelings, I broke off one square to eat then put the rest away for the month!!!

Day 10

I never would have said we were a wasteful family, before this experiment  but we  have definitely been super, super good for the past 10 days. I even noticed it in the bin when we emptied a 1/3 full one for the bin men instead of one where we struggle to put the lid on!! 
Everyones been finishing their meals too, I left a spoonful of something the other day without thinking and hubby called me back to finish it - during ww2 wastefulness  was quite a crime and even punishable by a prison sentence!


Porridge or toast


Cheese and chutney sandwiches*
* grating the cheese makes it go further, a thin spreading of chutney means you don't need any butter!


Bubble and squeak and bacon

Thursday, 16 February 2012

Day 11

Breakfast Welsh rarebit Lunch Jaket potato or jam fritters Supper Roast pork, roast potatoes, veg Snacks Leftover birthday cake I chose pork for this weeks meat ration. Leftovers can be sliced and used as a 2nd roast meal tomorrow or minced and eaten as rissoles. Luckily I found a meat grinder for sale yesterday - unused in a charity shop! So I think I'll try my hand at rissoles instead of fishcakes I was planning this week. On the downside our breadmaker died last night and wasted the ingrediants, so we're having to go buy another one. We've been loving the homemade bread we've been making for this experiment and it was one of the first things the kids have requested continue after! I used to hand make but a problem in my wrist means I can't anymore.

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Day 9 Birthday Party on rations

Today was our daughters 10th Birthday!! 
When we started this month of rationing I knew we would have a problem on this day and kinda decided we would probably have to havethis day off rations. However, as the first week progressed I thought harder and decided with a bit of extra planning we could probably manage something special within the constraints.

In the end we stuck to rationing with one small concession - a bag of popcorn.

I read up on life on the homefront and found out that fish and chip shops still opened in the war and were an occasional treat (you could buy or swap ration vouchers for them). So our birthday Lunch was proper fish and chips wrapped in paper and eaten in a Park!!

With that for lunch I knew we wouldn't be too  hungry at supper, but it would be nice to organise a special meal for her. I saved some of my rations and points from last week and looked for recipes that werent overly eggy or sweet! I had enough for a  sponge a carrot cake (requested by daughter) and a trifle!!
Served alongside cheese or Jam sandwiches it was more like a birthday tea from my childhood (minus the cheese and pineapple hedgehog!)  than a normal party fare these days!

The children and their grandparents thoroughly enjoyed it and we have leftovers for the next few days!!


Bacon Butty or Pancakes


Fish and Chips

Rations Birthday Tea

Cheese Sarnies
Jam Sarnies
Eggless Sponge
Carrot Cake with cream cheese icing* decorated with sweets from my rations!!

* Icing cakes was banned in 1942.

Extras / Treats

Popcorn at the cinema (you're only 10 once I couldn't refuse

Day 8 - Week 2 on rationing and weekly Weigh In!

We've made it through our first week of rationing!! We celebrated by, well, staying on the rationing!!

We weighed ourselves this morning...

Weight this week :-
Hubby  = +3.4 kg
Me = - 1.1 kg

I'm not listing the childrens, but will keep an eye on it at home.

We didn't start this as a diet plan, but quite a few people on facebook have asked if we've lost weight so I though we'd include it. I I have no idea how to explain this difference between us? Mines quite obvious , no snacking etc but for hubby to have put on quite a bit is confusing!? The only thing I can think of is that rationing was designed to put  people into their healthiest position, so a slightly underweight hubby may well 'bulk up' on it? where as overweight me would lose weight? what do you think?


Toast & Jam


Cheese sarnies, Apple.


Bunny Pie, Veg, Potatoes , Apple Crumble.


Potato Floddies

Monday, 13 February 2012

Day 5

We're surrounded by snow today so have turned to more warming comfort food.

Apparently its a bit of a myth that in ww2 they wouldn't have curries. They were just drier and more authentic than the ones we have in Britain today. I've tried to include a few more warming snacks to help hubby feel more satisfied - Potato Floddies seem to have done the trick!


Welsh rarebit, Jam / Marmalade on Toast


Bacon Turnovers, Potatoes, Veg


Potato & Spinach curry and rice

Snacks (between us not each!)

Potato Floddies / Apple / Pear / Carrot Cookie

Day 6 / 7

  A rather meager offering of Belted Leeks (minus the bacon) and Potatoes

 Day 6


Toast & Jam


Baked Poatoes & Cheese


Poatoto and Carrot Curry and Rice
Suet Pudding


Drop scones
Camp Coffee
Ginger cordial

Day 7


Bacon, Sausage, Fried Egg,Fried Bread


Belted Leek and Potato


Bunny Pie*, Cabbage, Sprouts, Potatoes
Apple Crumble & Custard

* not rabbit! This is our name for a veggie shepherds pie using carrots!!

 I've put these days together as it was a weekend! Its all getting a bit harder now so I did a crumbleon Sunday to boost our spirits! The weekends seem alot tougher, everyone is moaning too - but we're sticking at it. We went out Saturday night and as I was waiting for my drink to be served (Ginger Cordial) my eyes couldnt help scanning the packets of snacks on sale. I definitely was not hungry, it was just habit when ordering a drink to buy a bag of something too - luckily i resisted!
My body changed Saturday too , maybe a result of the mild spices in the curry or the coffee (or maybe something completely different...) Imy tummy was soooo bloated, I felt awful. :(

I'm also trying to get together some of the recipes I've used so I can blog them, bere with me, its half term and the kids are keeping me busy!!

Friday, 10 February 2012

Day 4

Today I think the realisation of our diet really kicked in! For me though I'm feeling alot less bloated (I used to feel this all the time) and I'm not hungry between meals at all - just at the next mealtime!

I forgot to check the bread levels last night so had to hurrily bake a loaf this morning so there was enough for everyone!!

The children have basically eaten everything I've put on their plates by the end of the meal even though they protested they don't like sprouts / cabbage at the start. They are still only choosing 3 or 4 small sweets a day from their rations.

Hubby is the one that complaining the most though! Despite proclaiming the meals - better than before rationing (well more filling anyway) he's missing his in between snacks...


Welsh rarebits for everyone!


Bacon Turnovers and Potatoes

Apples / Pears / Carrot Cookie / Jam Sarnie


Bubble and Squeak, Vegetables and Bacon Rashers

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Struggling with rations - Extras and obstacles

Something thats creeped into our menu pages on the last two days have been 'Extras' its been difficult to know how to handle these whilst sticking to the rules!

1. Coffee at friends - On Tuesday I was invited to a friends for coffee. Now I'm sure people were invited to friends houses for a hot drink during rationing, so of course I went, and I did actually have coffee (In rationing i'm sure I may have been offered ersatz coffee!) Before the visit, I had decided that I would decline any biscuits and cake offered, BUT my friend said hearing I was on rations instead of baking, she had gone out and specially bought coconut macaroons that she thought were a ww2 recipe. It was so kind of her, so when she offered I had one! (normally we'd get through a small packet between us or a few slices of cake!)

I hope that you agree this should be permissible? It wont happen again during the month.

2. Children Cooking elsewhere - Both children have baked either at school or Brownies this week, 2 x fairy cakes and 1 x biscuit.

I've let them eat both of these freely, replacing ration snacks i had planned.
Likelyhood is I'd have enough ingredients on ration to make these

3 Well meaning Friends & Family -

These include Suggestions that ...

"surely anything could be bought 'on the black market' so why don't I bend the rules"
uh nope I'm trying to do this as straight as possible!

"If you eat it at my house it doesn't count"
Generally if the goods are off ration, we'll eat them freely there (veg etc) but meat we would take off our ration. I'm not counting  cooking oil etc.

"As long as it existed in 1940 and wasnt rationed you should have whatever amount you want"
No, I will only buy what points will allow.

4. Freely available but hard to comeby foods

Lots of foods are listed as such, so I've set up a plan for this. I'm planning to only buy one of these things a week. eg 1 pack of sausages week 1, Fish in week 3 etc.

5. Things I would have had anyway

I live in the country, I bake my own bread, I preseve and make from scratch, so if I can make it i'm calling it allowable.
Eg I will make Soft cheese and yoghurt but will take the milk from my allowance.
I have chutneys and pickled onions in my store cupboard....so i can add them to meals.

As long as we don't abuse this i think this is fair.

Day 3

Onto day three and I'm starting to realise that the right breakfast is able to carry you right through to lunch - yesterday's hunger was actaully just a rumbly tummy right on cue at lunchtime!! Only having enough oats left for one more portion of porridge  and wanting a change from fadge. This morning we had welsh rarebit....

Welsh Rarebit Recipe
1 tbsp margerine
1 tbsp SR Flour
2oz Cheese *
1/2 tsp mustard powder **
Wholemeal Bread

* add what ever amount you have  - this is what we had and was enough for 4 of us
** mustard powder brings out the cheesyness to a low amount of actual cheese

Melt margerine in a small saucepan, remove from heat and add 1/2 flour. Stir together briskly and return to heat, still stiring! Pull to side and add rest of flour - stir! return to heat and stir until roux is formed.
Pull to side and add a drop of milk, stir! Return to heat and stir Repeat method adding milk until a nice thick sauce is made. Stir in cheese and mustard powder until melted.
Toast slices of bread on one side only. 
Turn over and spread thick layer of sauce on untoasted side. Return to grill until golden........yum!!

 Day 3 Menu 


Welsh rarebits


Toad in  the hole & Potatoes  _ kids

Jam sandwiches & Soup - adults

(Lunch was grabbed on the run today for hubby and I,  so nothing too exciting!)

(We were invited to my mums for tea)

Beef* and Root Veg casserole, Veg and Potatoes

* I've counted this on our ration!


Fairy Cakes-  Made at school  (children had these as an afternoon snack)

Yoghurts -  (Children had these for pudding at nannys)

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Day 2

I was definitely starting to feel hungry during the day today but I think honestly thats the lack of Tea Drinking in between meals I'd normally do. Hubby has taken a larger packed lunch today as he felt yesterdays was too small!


Fadge or Porridge

Both Children had Fadge today, grown ups had porridge (although this has almost used up the 2 points worth of oats I bought, with only enough left for 1 more bowl) tonight I'll decide whether we need to buy more or will look for more ration friendly breakfast recipes!


Soup and Bread (children)

Jam sandwiches, ww2Potato Salad*, Parsnip Soup
Potato, Mustard and Lettuce sandwiches

* Poatoes boiled in stock, chopped herbs


Carrot Soup

Toad in the Hole, Potatoes and Veg

Stewed Apple


Lollipop (Class reward for son)
Biscuit ( Cooking at Brownies for daughter)
Coffee and biscuit (Offered at a friends)

Todays evening meal was a definite success! Potion sizes were generous and everyone was very satisfied. We'll repeat this one I think!

So why the picture of cabbage heading up today, welllll, today I managed to Burn the cabbage for tea!!  What I didn't really think about was the amount of time I'd be needed in the kitchen and with 2 kids homework to supervise I didn't quite make it back to the kitchen in time to pour the boiling water into the pan of cabbage when interupted!!

I'm finding myself thinking about food alot more now. Not the fantasizing but the praticalities of it all. Driving to school I declared to the children 'Oh no!' 'What mummy?' 'I've forgotten to drain the fat out of the pan, to save for later!' Suddenly the little things matter!

Today presented a few firsts (see extras above) for today i'll just list them and do a seperate post on this tomorrow.

Low Points

Burning the cabbage!! And then serving it up anyway - covered in gravy!!!
Reading a post on FB with everyone reliving childhood crisps, (snaps, frazzles, fish & chips crisps in a newsprint bag etc ) then being able to think of nothing else so going to bed early!!!!

High Points

Coffe and a coconut macaroon with a friend.
Finding more recipes on the internet!

Monday, 6 February 2012

Day 1

Well we've made it through our first day!! Here's what we've had....


Porridge or Fadge

Most of us had porridge but daughter doesn't like milk (or cereal for that matter) so she had fadge - A WW2 recipe of mostly potatoes and flour! For the first time in recent history we didn't hear those words from her before school........'I'm hungry, what can i have?' success!!


Soups with bread or Salad Sandwiches

After School Snack
  Carrot Cookie


Parsnip Soup
Pigs in Clover

For dessert we had some of our sweet rations, and wheaties.

Low Points

Hubby washing up and accidently throwing away the veg water I was saving for stock.
Eating supper then realising I'd left the gravy in the kitchen!!!

High Points

Not feeling I've starved myself . 
The kids finishing their packed lunches at school and eating all their veg at supper without question!

Sunday, 5 February 2012

The beginning.....

We have decided to see if it is possible for us, as a modern day family, to live on rations of WW2 for a month...

This blog will document our journey over the weeks

So starting tomorrow  today we will be following the regulations for a family living in 1940. Which will give us the following rations to live off...

January 1940 rations  (per week unless otherwise stated)
bacon and ham  - 8oz/230g 
Sugar - 16oz/455g.
Tea - 4oz/115g.
Cheese -  8oz/230g 
Jam - 1lb/450g (a month)
marmalade - 2lb/900g (a month)
Butter - 8oz/230g
margarine - 12oz/340g.
Lard -  3oz/85g a week.
Sweets - 16oz/455g a month.
Meat other than pork is listed at a shilling and tuppence a week.The equivalent  amount we will work to is £1.30
The above amounts are fer adult, childrens rations are half the amount each. We are a family of 2 + 2 so as a family we will have enough combined rations to purchase 3 x the above amount.
This list show no limits for eggs or milk, for this experiment I will set other wartime limits of 3pts of milk each and 1 egg each per week*
* We do actually own 3 chickens so if they lay any eggs during this months these will be seen as free and on top of ration amounts.
We will also assume that we would have access to an allotment or similar so will allow ourselves to buy UK grown in season fruit and veg.