The Wartime Kitchen and Ration Book Cooking – Day Three:
Eggs and Egg in a Nest: WW2 Mock Fried Egg Recipe
Today is day three of my Wartime Kitchen and Ration Book Cooking challenge, and today is all about eggs. Yesterday was a vegetarian day for us, and I made a rather tasty Woolton Pie, you can read all about it here: The Wartime Kitchen: Living of Rations with Ration Book Cooking – Day Two & Lord Woolton Pie. Janice and Fiona have also been busy in their wartime kitchen too, and you can read all about how day two was for them here: Farmersgirl Kitchen and London Unattached. But today is a walk on the wild side, enter the Black Market and the currency of EGGS! Whilst poring over my copy of Wartime Farm, that was very kindly sent to me by Fiona Smith at Octopus Books, I was intrigued to read that eggs became unofficial currency and were linked to the black market. The egg ration, according to BOTH my parents, was one of the hardest of rations to endure – we take eggs for granted today, but if you think how useful and nutritional eggs are in the kitchen for baking, breakfast and supper dishes, you can better understand how hard it must have been to try to live off one egg per adult per week. You were also allowed a packet of dried eggs in your ration, (one packet every 4 weeks; each packet contained the equivalent of 12 eggs) but they were universally hated, mainly due to not being reconstituted correctly; my mother still hates eggs to this day some 78 years after the start of WW2.
If you lived in the country you were more likely to have more eggs; I keep chickens, so during the war, my hens’ eggs would not only have been a boon for cooking family meals, but I could have engaged in a bit of “under the table” activity and maybe I could have sold them on the Black Market or bartered with my neighbours for other rationed ingredients. If you kept hens, you could give up your right to the egg rations, such as it was, and in exchange you would have received chicken meal/food. I have tried to keep RIGIDLY to the constraints of WW2 rationing and thus far we have lived exactly to our allotted rations, but today I am using one of my precious eggs, although I presently have about a dozen at my disposal! So, breakfast today was a very thrifty way of feeding TWO adults with one egg, and we both LOVED the recipe: Egg in a Nest: WW2 Mock Fried Egg. The recipe I made comes from a Ministry of Food Leaflet – Number 11 called Dried Eggs. I wanted to try some powdered eggs, but I didn’t manage to get any in time for my ration book challenge, so I used ONE shell egg as a substitute, as the original recipe calls for ONE reconstituted egg.
I saved some bacon dripping the other day (from another WW2 recipe that I made and will be sharing this week) and so I was able to add some extra flavour into these mock fried eggs, which were filling and very tasty as it happens. Served with a dollop of brown sauce, which was still available during the war, it made a wonderful breakfast for a chilly frosty morning. The recipe is below…….
But on to my menu for today, day three:
Daily Meal Plan for Wednesday 7th November:
Breakfast: Egg in a Nest – Mock Fried Egg and two cups of tea with milk
Lunch: Leftovers – Woolton Pie with Salad two cups of tea with milk
Tea: Leftovers of Nettle and Watercress Soup (Recipe to follow) and two cups of tea with milk
And what I have left for the rest of the week is:
WW2 Rations 1940: Two Adults
Butter: 3 3/4 ozs (90g)
Bacon or ham: 200g (8oz)
Margarine: 6 1/2 ozs (160g)
* Cooking fat/lard: 200g (8oz) Used 20zs (50g) – 60zs (150g) left
Sugar: 14 1/2 ozs (440g)
Meat: To the value of 2/4d – about 2lb (900g)
* Milk: 5 pints (3000mls) – Used 1 pint (600ml) – 4 pints (2400mls) left
Cheese: 8oz (200g)
Eggs: 2 fresh egg a week – NOT taking this ration up as I have my own chickens
* Tea: 30zs (70g) left – Used 1/2 oz (15g) – 2 1/2 ozs (55g) left
Jam: 900g (2lb) every two months. 120g (41/2 ozs) left
Dried eggs: 1 packet (12 eggs) every four weeks
Sweets & Chocolate: 700g (1lb 8oz) every four weeks
As you can seen from my latest ration stores, due to eating leftovers, I still have a considerable amount left for the rest of the week, and I will be using some of my meat, cheese and butter rations soon, as well as some of my points. Points were put in place which you could use to purchase extra non-rationed goods; these included store cupboard ingredients such as dried fruit and pulses, tinned fish, meat or imported goods. 16 points were available in your ration book every 4 weeks, and those 16 points would enable you to purchase one tin of fish or meat, or 2lbs of dried fruit or 8 lbs of split peas, although, the points for these items did change according to shopping losses and the local market.
That’s it for day three, do pop back tomorrow to see what I am cooking up in my wartime kitchen, where I will be talking about the British Restaurants……bye for now, Karen.