Great Depression Cooking: When America Survived on Beans and Bread
The Great Depression is never a fun topic to explore or think about, but with the interesting way that our history is playing out in 2020, I thought that looking back to the Great Depression for ideas about how our ancestors survived might be a good idea! 🙂
The Great Depression of the 1930s began officially on October 24, 1929 on Black Thursday. The stock market crashed after Wall Street opened that morning. From that point on, America entered a new era in which life became a lot more about survival and hard-scramble living than the luxury of the earlier decade had held.
One of the misconceptions of the Great Depression that I have found is that food was hard to come by during that time. Food was not hard to come by. The money to pay for food was often hard to come by. Hunger was common, but starvation was not even amongst the very poor.
And since many people did not have money, they turned to other ways to feed their families, make good meals and help food to stretch. Creative recipes that used simple ingredients, swapping vegetables with neighbors, stretching expensive ingredients by using a little of it at a time, buying food that was close to its expiration date, canning and gardening where some of the ways that housewives and others found to get through those trying times.
Americans got use to simple, homemade meals without a lot of frills or extras. They learned to survive on a little and appreciated when they were given more. Those days made it easier for many families to learn how to cope with the rationing years that came during the World War II era of the 1940s.