Depression Cooking

My grandmother and her sisters, who grew up during the Depression, are all long-lived, strong women even in their 90s. I asked her once what the secret of their generation is, why everyone I know her age kicks more ass before breakfast than I do all day long. She thought about it for a minute and then said, “We ate potatoes. Every day, we ate a potato.” I went right out and bought a bag.

I thought of her when I saw this story aboutDepression Cooking with Clara:


5 thoughts on “Depression Cooking

  1. there’s as much vitamin C in potato as an orange.
    i have a rule for cooking i keep my potato, rice and pasta seperated. i need to make a pot of bean soup.

  2. In the 1930s where I lived, nobody hadheard of “pasta” unless they were “ethnic” or something. You either ate “noodles,” or you ate potatoes. People here didn’t start eating the bog-standard spaghetti with tomato sauce until after WWII, and nobody (except those “ethnic” types) drank wine until the 1960s.
    My mother was born in 1946 and never ate pizza or fresh pineapple until she was an adult, and she says that when she was a kid, “vegetables” in the winter either were carrots, potatoes, rutabagas, and cabbage, or else they came out of a can. They didn’t even start to really develop the concept of “nutrition” until the 1940s.
    Shit, man, I love living in the future…

  3. oh god. i grabbed some old ‘church recipe books’ at an estate sale. my god, i think only cookies + cakes seem worthy. OOOH, A FUCKING BAY LEAF IS ALL YOU NEED!

  4. Pasta e Fagioli is tasty, filling and cheap. It’s just white beans, some kind of macaroni, some garlic and seasoning, tomato sauce and water. It sounds less frugal if you call it Pasta e Fagioli instead of Macaroni and Bean Soup but it still costs the same 25c a serving. It freezes well too so make a big pot and party like it’s 1933.

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