Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Historic Recipe -- Low-Shortening and Apple Spice Muffins

Another historic recipe from Anna's Kitchen: a Compilation of WWII Ration Recipes...

During the war years fats were tightly rationed and in very short supply.  One technique for saving on fat was to render the leftover fats from cooking meats.  Another technique was to melt the fat off food wrappers.  Sometimes traditional recipes were modified to help conserve scarce ingrediants, such as the recipe presented here.  Today's health conscience cooks may find this recipe useful for those who wish to curtail their fat intake.  Enjoy.


1 1/2 cups sifted flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup milk
1 tablespoon melted shortening or oil

Sift flour once, measure, add baking powder, salt, and sugar, and sift again. Add egg, milk, and shortening. Stir only enough to dampen all flour. Bake in greased muffin pans, in hot oven (425 F) for about 22 minutes for large muffins, 15 minutes for medium muffins. Makes 8 to 12  muffins.


Mix muffins as directed above, adding 1/2 cup chopped, sliced apples with the egg, milk and shortening. Mix and turn into greased muffin pans. Sprinkle top with mixture of 2 tablespoons sugar, 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon, and dash of nutmeg. Bake as above, allowing 20 to 25 minutes.


  1. It's interesting how something that was once done out of necessity can be done at another time for a completely different reason. I am not familiar with ration recipes but I bet that plenty of them substitute applesauce for oil too. Sometimes the recipe ends up being a bit dry though. Does that happen with these muffins? I could be ok with that trade off since their kinder to my waste line.

  2. This post reminds me of my great-grandmother's pie crust recipe - made completely with oil rather than butter or shortening and somehow she always got her crust to be flaky! I don't think she used oil due to rationing, I think it was more of a heart-healthy decision, but your post reminded me of it.


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