BBC HomeExplore the BBC
This page was last updated in February 2012We've left it here for reference.More information

17 April 2014
Accessibility help
Text only
WW2 - People's War

BBC Homepage
BBC History
WW2 People's War Homepage Archive List Timeline About This Site Print this page 

Contact Us

Like this page?
Send it to a friend!

 

Did I tell you about? Wartime Pastry Making

by Terryvardy

Contributed by 
Terryvardy
People in story: 
Gerald Sawyer
Location of story: 
Sheffield
Article ID: 
A2140228
Contributed on: 
17 December 2003

This story is by Gerald Sawyer

Did I tell you about War- time pastry making?
Fats were always in short supply. If you were fortunate enough to know a friendly pig keeper or were on good terms with the butcher with whom you were registered, the occasional piece of pork fat may come your way. Gently cooked, or ‘rendered’ down, it produced precious lard. Whenever at a Church service or concert, the preacher or chairman says, “The choir will render the anthem…”, I always think of home rendered lard. An added bonus was the scraps that were left from the process. They were very tasty, but highly Cholesterolific, if such a word exists. Mind you, in those days we knew nothing of Cholesterol and its connection with heart disease. The fat saved from beef or lamb would be used to make savoury pastry, but the flavour was far too strong for sweet things. From time to time we would get an extra supply of American lard, along with dried egg and dried milk, subject always to the safe arrival of an Atlantic convoy.

One Christmas, We, the family that is thought that we had cracked it when one member of the family came home with a seven pound tin of Vaseline. Its label read ’White Petroleum Jelly’ for external use only.
Undeterred, Mum, Auntie Elsie and Grandma met at 155 a few days before Christmas and had a marathon baking session. The piles of jam and lemon curd tarts, mince pies and Bakewell’s grew on the kitchen table, as again anticipation of consuming them rose equally. After they had cooled, first tasting began. The pastry was a trifle hard, but none the less edible. Congratulations were offered to the one who bought the Vaseline
Christmas came and went, with no ill effects coming from our baking treats. However, a couple of years later, large packages of Vaseline were removed from the market, as research showed that eating even small quantities could trigger off bowel cancer. Thank God, none of our family were affected.

© Copyright of content contributed to this Archive rests with the author. Find out how you can use this.

Archive List

This story has been placed in the following categories.

Rationing Category
Sheffield and South Yorkshire Category
icon for Story with photoStory with photo

Most of the content on this site is created by our users, who are members of the public. The views expressed are theirs and unless specifically stated are not those of the BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of any external sites referenced. In the event that you consider anything on this page to be in breach of the site's House Rules, please click here. For any other comments, please Contact Us.



About the BBC | Help | Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookies Policy