A blunder on our part on how many rationing points we can actually have for a family of 5 means a reduction in tinned, boxed and packed goods. With what we thought were our points was a box of cereal, 2 to 3 tins of baked beans a tin of corned beef and a packet of raisins every 2 weeks or so. [CLICK HERE FOR MORE ON OUR NEWLY UPDATED RATIONS PAGE]
This has now (more accurately) been dropped to one of the above items per week.
Although we we’re dependent on these items solely, theyre a great comfort and fall back (beans and corned beef) incase of emergencies. On a more positive note this is a great 2012 insight into how it would have felt in the 40’s when things became scarce or disappeared entirely. Also, its a kick up the bum to get more creative with our menu plans etc….for example making our own baked beans and using leftover meat in pies. With these new changes we’ve also looked over old rations (to spot any other blunders) and although none we found (checked and double checked) we are still only consuming two fifths of what would have been our meat ration for the week.
The meat ration was the only ration not to be governed by weight but by price at just over a shillings worth (about 5p to 6p in modern money), and would have bought just over 500g of meat per person per week. (rounded down to make it easier when shopping) That over 5 people is 2.5kg of red meat per week, which feels like allot considering we’ve been doing fine on 1kg per week). Bare in mind as well that people in the 40’s men and women, young and old, would have been undertaking a great amount of physical labour, and would have needed as much muscle building protein as possible. Meat was the easiest and best source of this. Vegetarianism was seen as a bit fad like and weird. There were few vegetarians during the war… those that were around then would get an extra portion of cheese to replace their meat ration.
Oats were unrationed during the war, as was national flour… however, they were (like so much) not always easily obtainable across the country all of the time. Apart from the obvious breakfast porridge they were also used in baking, cakes, and generally bulking out everything from stews to soups and sausages.
Even though we’ll be getting more than twice the amount of red meat in per week Im determined not to consume all of it in evening meals. Apart from being boring its also bad frugally. Each ration MUST be used to the max, which means planning for EVERY meal, snack and ‘just incase’ or guest staying for lunch or dinner. Its also a far healthier option to work in a fish meal and one or two vegetable only meals in the week.
Lunch: soup…. veggie box leftovers from previous week with some pre-frozen home made chicken stock
Evening meal: Ham and cheese toasties
Afters: Summer berry crumble cake
Lunch: Either ham or jam sandwiches
Evening meal: Beef stroganoff (our own wartime inspired version) and seasonal veg (yet to be determined… it depends on whats available)
Afters: Apple and cinnamon cake
Lunch: Baked potato with leftovers on top (have portion sized servings from previous meaty meals all frozen in freezer for just this sort of occasion)
Evening meal: Shepard’s pie and seasonal veg
Afters: individual strawberry cheesecakes
Lunch: Left over Shepard’s pie
Evening meal: Fish pie and seasonal veg
Afters: Wholemeal blueberry buns (will bake these in bulk, they make great ‘power snacks’ for the kids over the weekend, as for and after dinner treat I may make a little mock cream to accompany them.
Lunch: home made meat pies and hopefully home made ‘baked beans’
Evening meal: Lentil and (seasonal and local) vegetable roast with garlic bread
Afters: Orange cake bars (less than 3g of fat per serving/ square) (oranges were rare but those that did exist were usually given to pregnant women and children under 5)
Lunch: Ham sandwiches
Evening meal: Lamb stew with dumplings + seasonal veg
Afters: Old English cider cake
Lunch: meat pies or left overs or baked potato
Evening meal: Winter beef soup (includes veggies… that are… you guessed it, seasonal and local)
Afters: 1 egg sponge cake with a home made ‘chocolate spread’ filling
Other: In this menu you may notice we’re only using 2kg of our 2.5kg meat ration for the week… so we will be making pies from the other 500g…. these will be great for warm lunches or if the kids are really hungry when they get back from school and a sandwich just wont fill the gap.
And: Breakfasts this week (school week) are going to be either porridge or wholemeal toast…. due to sudden cut backs in point (WHOOPS!) there will be little or no store bought cornflakes etc. Oats are not on the ration, neither is bread, so apart from the odd weekend pancake treat, they will be the norm.
Also: We will be attempting to make our own ‘baked beans’… should be delicious to eat, but not sure if the kiddies will prefer them over store bought beans (tinned beans may be going along with the store bought cereal, as we can only have 1 item on points per week now)
More: All our meat will be bought at a butchers this week and , as you may have noticed, theres a fair bit of beef there in various forms. The theory is to buy the amount of beef we need (2kg), and divide it into 500g portions…. the freeze. When we need it minced, like for Shepard’s pie, we’ll just slice the portion of meat and run it through the mincer… (which I’ll take a photo of for you… its a lovely old meat grinder).