Thursday, March 31, 2011

Victory Gardens

Perhaps it is the anticipation of my own garden, but I have been fascinated with garden history lately.

Victory Gardens (or War Gardens) were first brought about during World War I where food shortages and the fear of escalating food prices brought people of all statures to come together and plant gardens.  During this time the efforts were so successful that the National War Garden Community estimated a produced crop valued at over $350 million.  And all of this was grown in back yards and vacant lots!

The second time communities came together and planted Victory Gardens was in the 1940's during World War II.  Because of transportation and labor shortages, people were again encouraged to plant gardens in the name of patriotism.  Anything to help the war effort.
Inspired by these stories - and tired of eating the same old stuff - I went in search of a cookbook with recipes focusing on the produce derived from the Victory Gardens.  Lo and behold, I found "The Victory Garden Cookbook" by Marian Morash.  A book filled with over 800 recipes, tips on how to grow that particular vegetable in your own garden, and picking the vegetable out at the market (in case you don't want to grow that vegetable.) 

As soon as the book arrived in the mail, I curled up on the couch and went through it page by page.  Each recipe I would say, "ooohhhh I'm going to make this" or "yum, this sounds good!"

From stuffed cabbage to pumpkin cranberry cookies, I drooled over each recipe.  Making menus of the recipes I find to serve.

So this weekend, I will venture out to the grocery store and purchase some items for our Victory Garden dinners (it's still too soon to plant my garden here, but I am looking forward to trying these recipes from freshly picked vegetables in the garden -- -- Hurry up Spring!!)

Here is one website I read if you are interested in reading more about Victory Gardens.  And here is another that has the history of farming from the 1920's to today.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What is interesting is talking to my mom about my grandfather's victory garden. My grandfather worked with several others to grow gardens in empty lots, like you said. It sounds so wonderful and you know I like everything that is communal. I have seen that cookbook before, in fact I think I had it at one time. It was great! That was when I tried to feed the kids more fresh vegetable. Of course, later I became lazy and used frozen. BUT I TRIED! Georgi