Samantha’s recipe corner
With kitchen staples such as meat, eggs and dairy in short supply during the Second World War, British men and women had to use their imaginations to cook up tasty family meals on meagre rations. ‘Mock’ dishes were a creative way of livening up an otherwise grim dinner table. ‘Goose’ could be made from lentils and breadcrumbs, while carrots could replace sugar in an apricot tart.
Despite not tasting remotely fishy, mock crab was a popular meal of the day and there are lots of different versions of the dish. Like others in the 1940s might have done, I added a tomato to this recipe to make it look a little more ‘crabby’.
½oz margarine 2 tbsp reconstituted dried egg powder (or 2 eggs) 2 tbsp water 1oz grated cheese 1 dstspn salad dressing 1 tomato, peeled and chopped A few drops of vinegar Salt and pepper to taste 1940s salad dressing: 4 tbsp salad oil (I used olive oil) 2 tbsp vinegar Pinch of dried mustard Pinch of sugar Pinch of dried herbs Crushed garlic clove (optional)
METHOD To make salad dressing:
Mix all ingredients together and put to one side
To make mock crab:
Melt the margarine in a saucepan on a low heat. Add the reconstituted eggs (or beaten eggs). Scramble until half set. Still with the pan on the heat, add cheese, the tomato, salad dressing, vinegar and seasoning. Scramble until set.
Serve as a sandwich filling, on hot toast or over mashed potatoes.
“A quick and tasty meal”
Difficulty: 1/10 Time: 20 minutes
Based on a recipe from the1940sexperiment.com
Every issue, picture editor Samantha Nott brings you a recipe from the past. This month it’s a vegetarian favourite from the home front
No crustaceans were harmed in the making of this dish