Wartime Candies

Sugar was something that needed to be on ration during World War 1 per “Foods That Will Win The War And How To Cook Them” (1918) by Goudiss and Goudiss.

From the Book:

“One ounce of sugar less per person, per day, is all our Government asks of us to meet the world sugar shortage. One ounce of sugar equals two scant level tablespoonfuls and represents a saving that every man, woman and child should be able to make. Giving up soft drinks and the frosting on our cakes, the use of sugarless desserts and confections, careful measuring and thorough stirring of that which we place in our cups of tea and coffee, and the use of syrup, molasses or honey on our pancakes and fritters will more than effect this saving.

It seems but a small sacrifice, if sacrifice it can be called, when
one recognizes that cutting down sugar consumption will be most
beneficial to national health. The United States is the largest
consumer of sugar in the world. In 1916 Germany’s consumption was 20 lbs. per person per year, Italy’s 29 to 30 lbs., that of France 37, of England 40, while the United States averaged 85 lbs. This enormous consumption is due to the fact that we are a nation of candy-eaters. We spend annually $80,000,000 on confections. These are usually eaten between meals, causing digestive disturbances as well as unwarranted expense. Sweets are a food and should be eaten at the close of the meal, and if this custom is established during the war, not only will tons of sugar be available for our Allies, but the health of the nation improved.

The average daily consumption of sugar per person in this country is 5 ounces, and yet nutritional experts agree that not more than 3 ounces a day should be taken. The giving up of one ounce per day will, therefore, be of great value in reducing many prevalent American ailments. Flatulent dyspepsia, rheumatism, diabetes, and stomach acidity are only too frequently traced to an oversupply of sugar in our daily diet.”

If I were to compare 1918 sugar consumption to 2010’s sugar consumption, I can confidently say that we blow their numbers out of the water. The differences are mind blowing when everything we eat has sugar, natural or processed, in it.

Below are some of the recipes for Sugarless Candies Goudiss and Goudiss suggested making.



2 teaspoons gelatine
2 tablespoons cold water
1/3 cup corn syrup
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/4 cup chopped nuts
1/2 cup chopped dates
1/2 cup chopped raisins
1/4 teaspoon vanilla

Mix cornstarch with 1 tablespoon cold water. Heat corn syrup to the boil, add cornstarch and cook for three minutes. Soften the gelatine in two tablespoons cold water for five minutes; stir into the hot syrup after taking from fire. When gelatine has dissolved add the fruit and nuts and flavoring. Chill, cut in squares, and roll each in powdered sugar.


2 cups corn syrup
1/2 teaspoon soda
1 teaspoon water
2 tablespoons vinegar

Boil the syrup for fifteen minutes, then add the soda. Cook until a
little snaps brittle when dropped in cold water. Add the vinegar when this stage is reached and pour into oiled pans. When cool enough to handle, pull until white; make into inch-thick rolls and clip off into neat mouthfuls with oiled scissors, or chill and break into irregular pieces when cold.


1 cup corn syrup
1 tablespoon fat
1 cup peanuts

Boil syrup and fat until brittle when tested in cold water. Grease a
pan, sprinkle the roasted and shelled peanuts in it, making an even
distribution, then turn in the syrup. When almost cold mark into
squares. Coconut, puffed wheat or puffed rice may be used for candy instead of peanuts.


Put equal quantity of seeded raisins and roasted peanuts through the food chopper, using the coarsest blade. Moisten with molasses just enough so that the mixture can be molded into a loaf. Chill, cut and serve as candy. Chopped English walnuts combined with chopped dates or figs make a very delicious loaf sweetmeat.


1 cup corn syrup
2 tablespoons vinegar

Cook syrup for fifteen minutes, add vinegar, then when a little snaps when dropped in cold water turn over popped corn, mix well, and form into balls with oiled hands, or if fritters are desired, roll out the mass while warm and cut out with a greased cutter.


1 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup chopped dates
1/4 cup corn syrup
1/8 teaspoon mapline

Mix corn syrup and mapline. Add enough to the dates and coconut to form a stiff cake. Mold into neat square at least an inch thick. Let stand in the refrigerator for one hour, then cut in squares and roll each in cornstarch.


Mix one-half cup each of chopped peanuts and raisins. Add a teaspoon of lemon juice and two tablespoons of cream cheese. Remove stones from fine large dates, and in their place insert a small roll of the cheese mixture. These are nice in place of candy or can be served with salad.


1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup nuts
2 tablespoons honey, maple syrup or corn syrup
1/2 cup figs or dates

Put fruit and nuts through the food chopper, using the coarsest
blade. Add enough syrup or honey to make a stiff loaf. Place in the
refrigerator for one hour; slice and serve in place of candy, rolling
each slice in cornstarch.


Cut a slit in the side of dried figs, take out some of the pulp
with the tip of a teaspoon. Mix with one-quarter cup of the pulp and one-quarter cup of finely chopped crystalized ginger, a teaspoon of grated orange or lemon rind; and a tablespoon of lemon juice. Fill the figs with mixture, stuffing them so that they look plump.

One response to “Wartime Candies

  1. Pingback: Great Depression Era Real Food Recipes | More With Less Mom

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