Probably a little late for rationing but...

You all seem to be such proficient chefs. Well here is a place to share some of that cooking knowledge. Or do you have a cooking problem? Ask away. Jams and chutneys go here too.
Post Reply
User avatar
Green Aura
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 9231
Joined: Thu Feb 07, 2008 8:16 pm
latitude: 58.569279
longitude: -4.762620
Location: North West Highlands

Probably a little late for rationing but...

Post: # 293905Post Green Aura »

...OH and I have decided we'll have a go at rationing - WW2 style.

We've been on a low carb diet for the last couple of years, with good success. The current situation, with supermarket shortages, difficulty getting delivery slots (still!) and having quite a stash of unused pulses etc had already lead to us ditching the preferred way of eating for a while. Not having eaten this way for a while, though, I don't feel like I'm in control of what I'm eating suddenly. It's probably a little late as things seem to be lifting, although that doesn't necessarily mean supplies etc will get better instantly - especially for those of us in remote rural areas, still under lockdown.

Anyhow, we're starting tomorrow. The allowance, based on stuff I found on t'internet, for two people, for one week, is as follows.
Butter: 100g
Mary’s blend: 150g
Cooking fat/lard: 150g
Sugar: 440g (Erythritol and/or inulin - we don't use sugar these days, except for wine or beer making)
Bacon or ham: 225g
Meat or fish: 900g
Milk: 3000ml (we'll use almond or coconut milk)
Cheese: 225g
Eggs: 12 (the actual ration was 2 plus dried eggs, but it said rural areas often got more - we may not use them all but we get a dozen weekly from a neighbour, so I'm not going to disrupt that)
Tea: 70g
Jam: 100g - unlikely we'll use this but it's there if we fancy it. Plus, I've just been given a jar of marmalade in exchange for a couple of masks I made for a friend
Chocolate: 100g - the allowance was more than this but we decided to keep it to 1 bar 90% dark chocolate and use it in cookies etc, with ingredients from elsewhere, to make it go further
Flour: 1000g - there was no rationing on this until after the war, but we need some limit so I can count the calories etc
Potatoes: 1000g - again I've had to put a figure on these, they weren't rationed and seemed to play a part in everything!
Veg will come from our veg box delivery and anything we grow. Fruit we haven't eaten much of for ages, but I've added some apples and some dried fruit.
This comes to about 1400kcal/day. Pulses will have to be counted on top - they were rationed but apparently could be bought as a special item (as with the dried fruit). We won't be eating huge amounts though, despite the allowance being 8lbs every couple of months! I'm not sure we'd eat that much in a year. :lol:

Anyway I've started my prep today, making a meal plan for the coming week and making the dough for the "National loaf" which I'll bake in the morning. I hope mine will be better than the original recipe - I don't think they did slow fermentation. The plan is to use the rationing as a guideline to amounts and I'm quite interested in trying a few of the recipes I've found, but not use it to punish ourselves.

The original National loaf recipe

1 ½ lb wholemeal bread flour
1 ½ tbsp salt
1 ½ tbsp dried yeast
1 dsp honey or treacle
450 ml tepid water
Mix together all the ingredients and knead for about 10 minutes until you have a soft dough. Place the dough in an oiled bowl, cover with a tea towel and leave until dough has doubled in size (around 2 hours).
Knock back the dough, give a short knead then cut into two equal pieces. Place in 1.5 litre loaf tins, allow to rise for a further 2 hours.
Pre-heat oven to 200°c then bake loaves for 30 min. Allow to cool on a wire rack.

National loaf 2020 style
578g white flour it was all I could get, to which I added 102g oat fibre - to make it similar to the 85% wheatmeal flour in the original. 680g = 1.5lb
15g salt (I use grey salt, which isn't very salty, so if using ordinary salt cut this down to 7-10g)
2g dried yeast - much less needed because of slow ferment
1 dsp blackstrap molasses (I wouldn't normally add any sweetener but thought as a first go I'd stick as close as I could to the original. It's unlikely I'll add it again)
510 ml cold water (70% hydration. I started with the advised amount but it was far too stiff, maybe due to the fibre I used)
Mix together all the ingredients and knead for about 2 minutes. Place in bowl and do 4 stretch and folds at 30 minute intervals. Cover bowl with clingfilma and refrigerate for 12-24 hours.
Next day, remove from fridge, cut dough into two pieces and shape into 2 loaves. Allow to rest in parchment-lined baskets to come up to room temperature - about an hour or so.
Pre-heat oven to 200°c fan, with two cast iron casseroles inside. When dough is ready to bake, take lids off the casseroles, drop dough (on the parchment) into the casseroles, put the lids back on and put back in oven. Bake for 20 mins then remove the lids, rotate casseroles 180°and bake for a further 20 mins. Allow to cool on a wire rack.

I'll let you know how we get on!
Maggie

Never doubt that you can change history. You already have. Marge Piercy

Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage. Anais Nin

User avatar
Flo
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 2078
Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 10:12 am
Location: Northumberland

Re: Probably a little late for rationing but...

Post: # 293906Post Flo »

Hmm well yes. Step father's family were farmers mostly so the wartime rations looked a bit different. But swapping went on. My earliest memories before mother married step father were of cut down dresses for me, unravelled knitting wool for toys, cut down items for the doll's cot. Mum's mum had a way with making things. I can remember some lovely toys.

User avatar
Green Aura
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 9231
Joined: Thu Feb 07, 2008 8:16 pm
latitude: 58.569279
longitude: -4.762620
Location: North West Highlands

Re: Probably a little late for rationing but...

Post: # 293909Post Green Aura »

All rationing was finished by the time I came along, but the affect it had on my Dad, and later Step-mum was very evident.

The interesting thing, for me, looking back at some of these recipes, is how similar my family's Ish ways of food growing, prep and way of eating is remarkably similar (although not rationed obviously). We have a much broader range of options but growing what we can, using as much of it as possible, preserving gluts for leaner months etc all fit in very nicely. I'm guessing that's my upbringing again.

We've never eaten pies much, I'm not a great lover of pastry. OH is really happy that's about to change. Only for the short-term though. :roll: :lol:

Dad also, as I've mentioned elsewhere, took great care of all his tools and his shed was his pride and joy, as well as his retreat no doubt! I've still got a wooden stool he made, very battered but still very strong.
Maggie

Never doubt that you can change history. You already have. Marge Piercy

Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage. Anais Nin

User avatar
Odsox
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 5444
Joined: Tue May 27, 2008 2:21 pm
Location: West Cork, Ireland

Re: Probably a little late for rationing but...

Post: # 293913Post Odsox »

I remember rationing, but like Flo I was raised on a small farm, or large smallholding (about 15 acres) and so apart from no chocolate or sweets didn't affect me much at home.
Where it did affect me was school dinners and has affected me for life as we seemed to have lentil hotpot incessantly, and to this day I still HATE lentils.
I don't know if it was the war or whether it was common country practice to grow everything you wanted to eat and preserve anything worth preserving, but that has certainly affected me all my life and even more since I gave up working for a living. But certainly what rubbed off from wartime living most was not wasting any food whatsoever, leftovers rehashed the next day and scraps for dog or chicken food.
Tony

Disclaimer: I almost certainly haven't a clue what I'm talking about.

User avatar
Flo
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 2078
Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 10:12 am
Location: Northumberland

Re: Probably a little late for rationing but...

Post: # 293935Post Flo »

So come on - tell us more, tell us more. How's things going and what you've been eating ....

User avatar
Green Aura
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 9231
Joined: Thu Feb 07, 2008 8:16 pm
latitude: 58.569279
longitude: -4.762620
Location: North West Highlands

Re: Probably a little late for rationing but...

Post: # 293936Post Green Aura »

We've kept to the list above, plus veg and a few apples. I've run out of bread, but have oats and rice left. The bread's OK but next week will be without the sweetener, which we could taste.

Sausage and mushroom fritatta with veg for dinner and cold with salad for lunch the next day.
Devilled fish (a WW2 recipe) was very nice.
Chicken and vegetable pie with WW2 potato pastry (which was very nice) has done two dinners.
I made some marmalade cookies, planning to have one with a cup of tea each afternoon but they started to get a bit stale so we finished them yesterday. We've got 60g of our chocolate allowance left.
Cheese and beetroot butties for lunch - an old favourite anyway.I forgot the veg soup
We've enough meat/fish allowance to have fish pie on sunday and we'll have dal and rice tomorrow night.

We've been busy trying to make sure the greenhouse is safe so I've spent less time planning the week's meals than I would have liked. We'll do better next week. On the whole I don't think we've done too badly though. I definitely feel like we're more in control.
Maggie

Never doubt that you can change history. You already have. Marge Piercy

Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage. Anais Nin

User avatar
betonyjoy
margo - newbie
margo - newbie
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2017 5:54 pm

Re: Probably a little late for rationing but...

Post: # 293948Post betonyjoy »

Just giving this a gentle bump. I'm very interested how you've been getting on Green Aura!

User avatar
Green Aura
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 9231
Joined: Thu Feb 07, 2008 8:16 pm
latitude: 58.569279
longitude: -4.762620
Location: North West Highlands

Re: Probably a little late for rationing but...

Post: # 293949Post Green Aura »

It sort of fell by the wayside, I'm afraid. Thanks to all the bread etc we both put on almost half a stone!

I'm sure that was not by doing the rationing - that probably stopped the upward gallop, but scared us both enough to go back to our low carb lifestyle. Fortunately we've been having more luck with T4sco recently which makes it easier.

If this predicted second wave hits and we're back in strict lockdown again at least I'll have all the info to hand.
Maggie

Never doubt that you can change history. You already have. Marge Piercy

Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage. Anais Nin

User avatar
Flo
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 2078
Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 10:12 am
Location: Northumberland

Re: Probably a little late for rationing but...

Post: # 293951Post Flo »

We were all supposed to be skinny with the rationing in the war. Perhaps it was going from shop to shop buying things rather than ordering it all on line wot did it. It's too easy to get everything nowadays at the click of a button.

User avatar
Green Aura
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 9231
Joined: Thu Feb 07, 2008 8:16 pm
latitude: 58.569279
longitude: -4.762620
Location: North West Highlands

Re: Probably a little late for rationing but...

Post: # 293952Post Green Aura »

I think the damage was done pre-rationing, Flo. We went seriously off the rails for a while.

I think you've got something there though - we get exercise in the garden but I'm sure a good walk round a supermarket would help enormously. :wink: :lol:
Maggie

Never doubt that you can change history. You already have. Marge Piercy

Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage. Anais Nin

User avatar
Odsox
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 5444
Joined: Tue May 27, 2008 2:21 pm
Location: West Cork, Ireland

Re: Probably a little late for rationing but...

Post: # 293953Post Odsox »

Flo wrote:
Fri Jun 05, 2020 2:57 am
We were all supposed to be skinny with the rationing in the war. Perhaps it was going from shop to shop buying things rather than ordering it all on line wot did it. It's too easy to get everything nowadays at the click of a button.
Not in my case Flo, we had a butcher and a general grocer deliver every week. The butcher would take the next week's order on delivery, and the grocer had a "boy" who biked round mid-week to get the order. Not that much different to today!
The "boy" was a very fit middle aged bloke. :iconbiggrin:
Tony

Disclaimer: I almost certainly haven't a clue what I'm talking about.

Post Reply