Food Flash: Go Easy with Bread

In 1939 over 60% of Britain’s food was imported, much of it from Canada and the USA, and once war was declared it became vital to increase domestic food production. Britain’s merchant ships – which were needed to transport vital war materials, weapons, munitions and troops – were constantly at risk of attack by German U-boats. Potatoes were relatively easy for people to grow themselves, and took up less space than wheat to grow commercially, so the public were encouraged to ‘Go easy with bread – eat potatoes instead’. The Ministry of Food’s Food Flashes series included a good few short films on this theme, including this one that is pure 1940s bossiness and brisk common sense!

Don’t forget, you can find out more about digging for victory at the forthcoming series of events: In the Company of Cooks. On 12 June Sophie Grigson and Jane Fearnley-Whittingstall will show you how to make the most of your own produce in an exclusive talk at Imperial War Museum London. Get your tickets now!

7 Responses to “Food Flash: Go Easy with Bread”
  1. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Kevin Martindale, Jeff Clark and 20th Century London, Imperial War Museum. Imperial War Museum said: Friday afternoon…time for a Ministry of Food Food Flash! [...]

  2. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Kevin Martindale, Lizzie Parker, Jeff Clark, 20th Century London, Imperial War Museum and others. Imperial War Museum said: Friday afternoon…time for a Ministry of Food Food Flash! [...]

  3. anenthusiast says:

    Love the blog and can’t wait to come over to see the exhibition. I was really excited to find out about this very timely exhibit as we’re doing a food experiment at home this week eating wartime recipes and topping it off with a VE day tea party on Saturday! Hope to visit you by then. Last night’s tea was Cheese and Tomato Charlotte- good for using up old bread and hard bits of cheese!

    • Jesse, IWM Web Team says:

      Thanks for the kind words! What has been your most/least favourite wartime dish so far? (Those cheese fritters looked great!) When you make it to the exhibition definitely report back and let us know what you thought!

      • anenthusiast says:

        Hi Jesse- the fritters were delicious in fact! Although I must say the sausages in cider were pretty special and am very much looking forward to my VE Day teatime party to try some Crumb Fudge (using leftover breadcrumbs) and some Potato Biscuits!

  4. Tammy says:

    I made the cheese & tomato charlotte for my family just last week & it was delicous. I use the receipes from Marguarite Pattern’s Victory cookbook, which 3 books in 1 “We’ll Eat Again”, ” The Victory Cookbook” & “Post-War Kitchen” and have used several. I am a serial committee member and the cakes from the We’ll Eat Again section always go down really well! I have visited the exhibition twice & love it. I have just booked my ticket for Marguarite & Valentine’s demonstrations. I can’t wait!!

    • Jesse, IWM Web Team says:

      Thanks for your comment, and glad to hear you’ve enjoyed the exhibition. We’re all looking forward to the upcoming cooking demonstrations – they should be really interesting and entertaining! What are some of your favourite wartime-inspired recipes to make? Do you find you have to tweak them at all for a more modern palate, or do the recipes still hold up today?