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How Would YOU Survive on These Great Depression Meals?

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With all the talk about food storage and growing our own food, I did a little digging around to find out what some people ate during America’s Great Depression of the 1930′s.  Surprisingly, a few of these were made by my mother and grandmother,traditions, I’m sure, from a more frugal era.  I still have a soft spot for Chipped Beef on Toast!  How many of these are familiar to you, and do you have any others to add to the list?


selling apples Great Depression Could you stomach these Great Depression meals?
image by edenpictures

Milk toast

Chipped beef on toast

Cucumber and mustard sandwiches

Mayonnaise sandwiches

Ketchup sandwiches

Hot milk and rice

Turtle/tortoise

Gopher

Potato soup – water base, not milk

Dandelion salad

Lard sandwiches

Bacon grease sandwiches

Sugar sandwiches

Hoover Great Depression Could you stomach these Great Depression meals?

image by Tony the Misfit


Hot dogs and baked beans

Road kill

One eyed Sam – piece of bread with an easy over egg in the center

Oatmeal mixed with lard

Fried potatoes and hot dogs

Onion sandwich – slices of onion between bread

Tomato gravy and biscuits

Deep fried chicken skin

Cornbread in milk

Gravy and bread – as a main dish

Toast with mashed potatoes on top with gravy

Creamed corn on toast

Corn mush with milk for breakfast, fried corn mush for dinner

Squirrel

Rice in milk with some sugar

Beans

Fried potato peel sandwiches

Banana slices with powdered sugar and milk

Boiled cabbage

great depression washing day Could you stomach these Great Depression meals?

image by Blue Mountains Library


Hamburger mixed with oatmeal

American cheese sandwich, ‘American’ cheese was invented because it was cheap to make, and didn’t require refrigeration that may or may not exist back then.

Tomato gravy on rice

Toast with milk gravy

Water fried pancakes

Chicken feet in broth

Fried bologna

Warm canned tomatoes with bread

Butter and sugar sandwiches

Fried potato and bread cubes

Bean soup

Runny eggs with grits

Butter and grits with sugar and milk

Baked apples

Sliced boiled pork liver on buttered toast (slice liver with potato peeler)

Corn meal mush

Spaghetti with tomato juice and navy beans

Whatever fish or game you could catch/hunt

Tomato sandwiches

Hard boiled eggs in white sauce over rice

Spam and noodles with cream of mushroom soup

Rag soup: spinach, broth and lots of macaroni

Garbanzo beans fried in chicken fat or lard, salted, and eaten cold

Popcorn with milk and sugar – ate it like cereal


Lessons learned from this list? 

  

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by on Mar. 16, 2013 at 4:04 PM
Replies (51-60):
kirbymom
by Sonja on Mar. 17, 2013 at 11:33 AM

I remember that!  :) 

Quoting Bluecalm:

Coffee in New Orleans has chicory in it which was originally used to stretch the coffee beans. My dh told me as a kid he drank cafe au lait with rice in it for breakfast.

Quoting kirbymom:

You know, I was thinking that these recipes could be used for some history-culture lessons from right here in our own country.  

Quoting bluerooffarm:

 I've eaten a lot of these too.  We had other names for some of them... One eyed Willie, we called toad in the hole (my boys LOVE that).  Beans and wienies.  Rag soup we made with the bow tie noodles and called it butterflies in the field.  We put "stewed" (canned) tomatoes on anything...potatoes, bread cubes, grits, noodles.


My boys like most of these recipes.





kirbymom
by Sonja on Mar. 17, 2013 at 11:47 AM

OMG! Soooo many lessons here!  I am very positive that in those days they wer much healthier than in these days. The way food is processed today alone, shows how the foods then, were a lot healthier than today. And you are so right about pie plants and the like being eaten more then than today. Kind of sad when you think how much knowledge is being lost because of it too. :( 

Quoting bluerooffarm:

 There's ethnic food practices, nutritional values of the foods. Is that food still "cheap" in this economy?  Calorie counts, Would we work off the calories of those foods today with the activity levels required for our "average" jobs?  The kids could make a menu for a typical week for depression age and compare it to a menu for our families today and decide which really is more healthy (soda levels, potato chips, meat servings, fry oil, vegetable servings)?  Some really great lessons that may broaden our views.  We have this way of thinking we are so much healthier today, but are we really?  They ate much less soda and had fewer french fries and other already prepared foods, so what does that mean for the nutrition content of the diet in the time period.  I think we may find that they ate more plant based foods and calories than we do ... pie plant (rhubarb), cabbage, onions, tomatoes, sweet potatoes and squash were a much bigger proportion of their diet than many typical American families today.

Quoting kirbymom:

That is what I was going for with this post. Tying it into our schooling. There could be many different lessons here. 

Quoting bluerooffarm:

 I wonder if they could be tied to the different ethnicities.  Like did the Irish do the cabbage and potatoes and the Germans do the cabbage and noodles? Were we still holding onto our ethnicities more during the depression?  Great lessons there!

Quoting kirbymom:

You know, I was thinking that these recipes could be used for some history-culture lessons from right here in our own country.  

Quoting bluerooffarm:

 I've eaten a lot of these too.  We had other names for some of them... One eyed Willie, we called toad in the hole (my boys LOVE that).  Beans and wienies.  Rag soup we made with the bow tie noodles and called it butterflies in the field.  We put "stewed" (canned) tomatoes on anything...potatoes, bread cubes, grits, noodles.

My boys like most of these recipes.


 


 


kirbymom
by Sonja on Mar. 17, 2013 at 12:08 PM

I remember a lot of these as a child growing up. I am sure we could survive if we had to but I am prayin' that it never comes to it. I'm not sure that my tongue or stomach could handle the tastes today. :) 

Quoting mrs.miller89:

I love one eyed sams! I call them one eyed sandwiches, also have heard Roadhouse eggs and eggs in a basket. I've eaten a few of the others listed when I was younger and we lived with my grandpa. I COULD survive if we only ate the things listed, but I wouldn't enjoy it all the time.

Oh, when I was five, my best friend and I would eat mayo and sugar sandwiches! Sounds so gross now lol.


  

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kirbymom
by Sonja on Mar. 17, 2013 at 12:09 PM

Then I congratulate you on having an iron clad stomach. lol  :)  

Quoting shylynn22:

I could eat everything but the sandwiches


  

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Precious333
by Julia on Mar. 17, 2013 at 12:17 PM
Yes.....we have done these in our own financial depression a home. I have felt a bit proud to make something from nothing!
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kirbymom
by Sonja on Mar. 17, 2013 at 12:20 PM

Yes! I so know what you mean! Me too. :)   One time my hubby made this awesome rice casserole for only $5 and it fed our whole family of 9 with 3 regular size servings too. I was so proud of that meal. 

Quoting Precious333:

Yes.....we have done these in our own financial depression a home. I have felt a bit proud to make something from nothing!


  

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Precious333
by Julia on Mar. 17, 2013 at 12:57 PM
1 mom liked this
Ohhhh. I need that recipe!


Quoting kirbymom:

Yes! I so know what you mean! Me too. :)   One time my hubby made this awesome rice casserole for only $5 and it fed our whole family of 9 with 3 regular size servings too. I was so proud of that meal. 

Quoting Precious333:

Yes.....we have done these in our own financial depression a home. I have felt a bit proud to make something from nothing!



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mommy2kaelynn
by Member on Mar. 17, 2013 at 1:01 PM
I've eaten quite a few of those, ones o remember my Dad talking about were split pea soup, LOTS of times per week, with ham if they could get it, but not often!

And my Grandfather, who was an engineer used to hold meetings at a coffee shop. He would get there early and order hot water and use ketchup to make a fake tomato soup!
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lkane81
by on Mar. 17, 2013 at 1:04 PM
We ate alot of that and onion mayo sandwiches. Brings back memories of my dad haven'tng rice milk and sugar i liked my rice with just sugar. Or we would fix butter and sugar on white bread .
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kirbymom
by Sonja on Mar. 17, 2013 at 1:31 PM

We fix rice with some sugar and a little bit of butter  throughout the whole year. My kids love it. Plus, we even add peanut butter or a marmalade or some cocoa mix or some blueberries for flavor.  :)  

Quoting lkane81:

We ate alot of that and onion mayo sandwiches. Brings back memories of my dad haven'tng rice milk and sugar i liked my rice with just sugar. Or we would fix butter and sugar on white bread .


  

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