A one-of-a-kind recipe collection from World War 1 St. John’s
One overlooked aspect of Ayre’s remarkable life was a recipe
collection she wrote in a small notebook, starting in 1917. She didn’t bother
with traditional recipes- not a boiled dinner or pan-fried codfish to be found-
but collected out-of-the-ordinary dishes for the time, along with ingenious
ways of being frugal with leftovers.
Intrigued by this historical document and curious about what
exactly the lady of a middle-class household in World War 1 St. John’s would
feed her family, Roger Pickavance and Agnes Marion Murphy (Ayre’s
granddaughter) set about cooking all 140 recipes in the century-old notebook.
Most worked well, some did not, and many would make a welcome addition to a
modern cook’s repertoire.