From The Trenches To Afghanistan: Food On The Frontline
There’s no doubting that the face of army cuisine has changed over the last 100 years- but how do modern rations compare with WWI?
There’s no doubting that the face of army cuisine has changed over the last 100 years; Army chefs recently served up an impressive menu at the annual Grill Fest in Estonia, featuring smoked pork sausages, apple, black pudding and rosemary sat on beetroot jam, with fondant potato and caramelized carrots and a beef caviar.
During World War One, it was a different story.
According to the Imperial War Museum, the British were sending over 30 million kg of meat to the Western Front every month - mostly in the form of tinned beef stew.
As the war continued, field kitchens struggled to cope with the volume of food they had to produce; despite the vast quantities of meat being imported, the average tommy could only expect to receive 6 ounces of ‘bully beef’.
One of the most important breakthroughs when it comes to military cuisine is the ‘three-year pizza’ - the “holy grail” of the ration pack.
British rations contain many much-loved brands to remind the troops of home - Kenco Coffee, plenty of Typhoo Tea, even Tabasco!
And of course, there’s that British staple, chicken tikka masala for main.
Troops are encouraged to consume around 3,800 calories when operating in field conditions, and although they might not be the tastiest in the world, their ration packs are designed to cater to their specific nutritional needs.