For the Historical Food Fortnightly challenge 9 – Mock Foods, I made World War One mock sausages and cutlets. Meat was scarce in the war, so I found many meat substitute recipes from different countries. Here’s a recipe for mock sausages made with lima beans from 1912: Soaked, boiled, pureed lima beans were mixed with breadcrumbs, salt, pepper and sage, egg and butter; shaped into sausages, breaded and fried in oil. In 1915 in Germany, sausages, patties and ‘roast beef’ were made with soaked and boiled peas, mixed with carrot, onion, salt and mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris). Sausage and deli meats were made with 3/4 part beans and 1/4 part lentils. The vegetarian sausage dough was sewn into a piece of muslin, and smoked for one day at the butcher’s. It’s said to taste like liverwurst.
I chose to make 1914 vegan lentil cutlets and sausages published in One Hundred Meatless Dishes. Vegan lentil cutlets are like vegan lentil croquettes of today.
- 1 cup lentils
- 1 onion
- 4 tbsp tomato paste
- 2 tbsp sunflower seeds
- ca. 1 tsp salt
- flour and breadcrumbs
- optional: 1 egg
Soak lentils overnight, cook for 20 to 30 minutes with enough water, and strain if necessary. Add onion, tomato paste, sunflower seeds, salt and pepper. Puree all together in a blender till smooth. Thicken the dough with flour and breadcrumbs, and optional one egg (but the egg isn’t necessary for the dough to hold together).
Shape the dough into croquettes or ‘cutlets’ and roll in the breadcrumbs (for a vegan version), or egg and breadcrumbs.
Fry the mock sausages and cutlets in oil.
With the meatless sausages and cutlets, we had German fried potatos, fried egg and a soy yogurt dip.