This week, Tastes Like Vintage honors the veterans of WWII with a recipe that they called S.O.S.
Decorum prohibits me from telling you what the first letter stands for, but the last letters stand for "on a shingle." Full disclosure, according to Wikipedia, soldiers from WWI also found it on the mess hall menu. As civilians, we know it as the comfort food known as Creamed Chipped Beef or Creamed Dried Beef. And while it can be found at diners and in the Stouffers section of the grocery frozen food department, if you have ten minutes to whip up a white sauce and a couple of minutes to toast some shingles, you've got a genuine salute to military dining perfect for eating this weekend while you watch a classic vintage war movie like The Great Escape, Tora! Tora! Tora!, Casablanca, The Best Years of Our Lives or The Bridge over the River Kwai.
To be first class historically accurate, the recipe would be mess tent-scaled to serve hundreds. So we're settling for second best: the recipe comes from America's Cook Book, compiled by The New York Herald Tribune Home Institute, 1945 third edition including a Wartime Supplement.
Creamed Dried BeefApproximate yield: 6 portions.
2 cups medium white sauce (recipe follows)
1 package (4 oz) dired beef, shredded, and scalded
buttered hot toast
Prepare white sauce, omitting salt; add shredded beef and heat slowly, about 10 minutes. Serve on toast or with hot baked potatoes as desired.* One egg or two egg yolks, slightly beaten, may be stirred into creamed beef just before serving.
Medium White Sauce
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 cup milk, rich milk or light cream
1/2 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp pepper.
Melt butter and stir in flour; gradually stir in milk and stir until mixture boils and thckens, then cook 3 minutes longer, stirring occasionally; add seasonings.
*Editor's note: Rice is also lovely as a base.
Clockwise from top left: RetroReRun, Uptown Vintage Home, Look on my Treasures, Vintage Eclecticity, Rock This Vintage, The Little Things Vintage