Would you fancy kipper pudding?

Would you fancy kipper pudding? Honestly? I love kippers, but no, I wouldn’t fancy kipper pudding, but if you only had two kippers and you wanted to make a more satisfying meal, and if the was was on so most things were rationed, then maybe you might take your two kippers, cook them, remove the skin and the bones (what a very fiddly task, all those tiny fine hair-like bones which can catch in your throat or tonsils) flake them, add chopped chives and put into a pastry made with raw grated potatoes lining a pudding basin and steamed for 1½ hours. You might then serve your kipper pudding, maybe with mashed potatoes and steamed or boiled vegetables from your vegetable patch which might once have been your garden, and you never know, you and your family might be hungry enough to enjoy it. Maybe sitting round the table with you are your children home from school, or your daughters who are working for the war effort on the land or in factories or driving buses and trains. Perhaps you’ve used their ration book to get extra kippers to make a bigger pudding. Maybe you old parents, your dad having fought in the war to end all wars, might also be at table with you. Maybe you are fortunate enough for your husband to be in a reserved occupation and be sitting opposite you with the biggest portion of the kipper pudding.

It’s easy to look at these recipes and almost laugh at them and be horrified by mock meat roll made with potato pastry and filled with finely chopped onion and shredded carrot and parsley. After the war, rationing continued into the 1950’s, but the rationing mentality continued much longer, the idea of not wasting food, substituting expensive ingredients with cheaper ones.

Rations per person per week, minimum to maximum :

  • Bacon and ham –  4- 8 oz
  • Sugar – 8 – 16 oz
  • Loose tea – 2 – 4 oz
  • Meat – Is – 1 s. 2d.
  • Cheese  – 1 – 8 oz
  • Preserves – 8 oz – 1 lb per month, 2 lb marmalade
  • Butter 2 – 8 oz
  • Margarine 4 – 12 oz
  • Lard 2 – 3 oz
  • Sweets 8- 16 oz

My featured image is of some piccalilli I made, ideal in times of rationing, any veg can go in really!


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