Wartime Rations – Day Twenty-One

Long – long – blog tonight, so let’s get started.

Dinner tonight was leftovers – again!  This time, Haggis burger with roasted brussels sprouts and baked potato. For pudding, baked apple stuffed with honey and raisins.


In honour of Burns Night yesterday, I tried to bake some shortbread – my first attempt in about 30 years.  Although they don’t look very pretty – next time I’ll use a pastry cutter! – they tasted good.  At least, the small portion I managed to rescue did. About three seconds after taking this picture, I knocked the plate on the floor. Let’s just say that if dogs can smile, mine had a grin from ear to ear, with shining eyes and a very waggy tail to match!

Although I could laugh it off, in wartime it wouldn’t have been nearly as funny.  Making the shortbread took up 1/10 of our fat allowance for the week. When resources were scarce, that would have been no laughing matter!

* * *

Moving on…

hshopAs promised, here –  for my husband’s colleagues who can’t believe I’m bringing in a grocery shopping for two at around $60 per week –  is my menu, shopping list and bill for this week’s rations. Please remember this isn’t absolutely everything I need for my weekly menu – I already have staples like flour/tea/treacle/sausagemeat etc. on my shelves and in the freezer.

Also, the bill has been adjusted to show the price of my actual rations allowances.  Some things – like bacon – I could only buy in a large packet so I had to remove the bacon allowed for this week and freeze the rest.

Main Course: Haggis Burger, Cheese Dumplings, Sausagemeat Loaf, Steak and Pot Pie, Steak and Pot Pie leftovers, Bacon Turnovers, Corned Beef Hash, Toad-In-The-Hole

Pudding: Breton pears, Padded pudding, Dark Gingerbread, Welsh cakes, Apple crumble, Pear crumble, Bread and Butter Pudding, Baked Apples.


Rations (for two):

Bacon – 8ozs 226g:  $3

Meat –  1lb/455g: $3.96 (Stewing steak)

Milk – 12 pints/6.8 litres: $9.99

Cheese – 4ozs – 112g: $2.50

Butter/fats – 1 lb /455g : $3.49

Sugar – 8 ozs/224g: $0.44c (It should be 1lb between the two of us, but I’m still haven’t used up our first week’s sugar ration.)

Eggs – 8 (2 shell and 6 powdered) $1.86

Preserves: 4ozs/112g:  $1.00

Non rationed food:

Sausages: $2.50

Corned Beef: $4.83  (on points when available!)

Bread: $3.29

Potatoes: $3. 98


Beetroot: $1.72

Leeks: Not available – it’s wartime.

Apples: $3.98

Pears: $5

Strawberry Jam:$1

Red cabbage: $2.29

Onions: $2

TOTAL: (IF my maths is correct!) $60.82Cdn: $54.96US: $63.25 Australian: 33.36GBP

As I said, I do have some staples already on my shelves and veggies left over from last week, and when I figured out the price of my morning porridge, without milk it comes to 14c per portion.

So it is possible to eat a very healthy, filling diet on a budget  But if you’d like to read more about eating well and cheaply, please check out THIS website.  Jack Monroe is a 25 year-old single mother who found herself forced to feed herself and her child on 10GBP a week.  ($18.23Cdn:$16.48US: $18.96Australian)


4 thoughts on “Wartime Rations – Day Twenty-One

    • I did get hungry for the first couple of days – but that was right after Xmas/New Year. Now I don’t. Part of that – I think – is because I’m eating real meals – porridge for breakfast, soup/sandwich/fruit or leftover for lunch, and a three course meal at night rather than grazing and stocking up on high calorie snacks. In fact, I’m not snacking any more. However, if I DO get hungry, I know I can make myself a piece of toast and a latte/coffee made with milk.
      Although this is called a wartime diet, the idea behind it back in the 40s, was NEVER for the population to lose weight. Just the opposite. They needed to ensure the whole population ate well (unlike during WW1) to keep the factories etc going. By the end of the war, most people were actually eating around 3,000 calories a day. But rather than it being 3,000 calories of the empty highly processed food we eat now, if was real food cooked from scratch, and I think that’s the important thing.

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