Carrots were used in many recipes during WWII to add bulk, moisture and sweetness. The Ministry of Food in Britain spread the word, via newspapers that carrots were responsible for the success of the British fighter pilots. Of course, it was the secret radar system that was responsible for the excellent shooting by the pilots, but the British public did not know that. They bought into the myth that carrots would help them see better during blackouts.


450 grams (1 lb) whole-wheat flour, 120 grams (4 oz) sultanas, 450 grams (1 lb) brown bread crumbs, 120 grams (4 oz) butter, 45 ml (3 tablespoon) dried egg powder and 90 ml (6 tablespoons) water or 3 eggs, 225 grams (1/2 lb) sugar, 120 grams (4 oz) grated raw carrot, 180 grams (6 oz) currents or chopped dates, 90 grams (3 oz) peel or stoned and chopped dates, 5ml (1 teaspoon) nutmeg and spice (if available), milk to mix, 5ml (1 teaspoon) lemon substitute (white vinegar or citric acid mixed with water).


Wash the dried fruit and dry it thoroughly with a clean cloth. Grate the butter and rub it into the flour and breadcrumbs mixture to form crumbs. Add the sugar, carrots, spices, dried fruit, lemon substitute and the chopped peel or dates. Add the beaten eggs and enough milk to mix moisten the whole mixture. Spoon into a well-greased basin, cover with a cloth and steam for eight to nine hours.

The 16th century King’s Head Hotel in Bungay, pictured above, is reputed to be haunted by the ghost of Matilda. She was a hotel chambermaid who fell in love with a groomsman. He left her and fled when she became pregnant and she took her own life due to heartbreak and to avoid the shame of having a child on her own. Three hundred years later, Matilda’s ghosts is still said to roam the hotel in search of her lost love.

Have a lovely week.