By Marilyn Hess
This is good for keeping in your haversack to just take out and add hot water to at the ropeline. They can be prepared ahead of time at home or you can try making some up in camp.
Pocket soup is simply soup that is boiled down to a thick paste, then dried or powdered.
To Make Pocket Soup
Take two legs of veal, first cut off the knuckles, then the rest into pieces, and two necks of mutton, and stove all four hours; then season with pepper, salt, cloves and mace and faggot of thyme and two pounds of good westphailia ham, then strain it off clear; then put in your knuckles of veal in a pot with a top and simmer it two hours more. This quantity will make one gallon as strong as size; use it as you want it. —From The Complete Practical Cook, June 8, 1748
Boil down the meat to a thick jelly, season it with salt, spices, and wine, or brandy; when cold cut it in square inches, and dry then in the sun. Keep them in a tight tin vessel and when you use them put a quart of boiling water to one or two of the cakes, vegetables can be added. — Mid 18th-century recipe
Receipts from 1763
Pour it upon flat dishes, a quarter of an Inch thick and there let it stand until the next day; when you must Cut it out with round tins, a little larger than a crown piece [approx. 1.5" diameter]. Lay the cakes out on dishes and set them in the sun to dry. When the Cakes are dry put them in tin boxes, or a tin box with writing paper between every cake, and keep them in a dry place.
[To reconstitute] Pour a pint of boiling water on one cake, add a little salt, and you have immediately a bason of good broth. A little boiling water poured upon one of the cakes will make gravy sufficient for a turkey or fowls. The longer the cakes are kept the better. N.B. as the cakes are drying, be careful to turn them.
Respectfully, Marilyn Hess