Episode 10: Navy Cooking at 110%

Ep 10 - Ray Boutwell, Navy

With Ray Boutwell, Navy Cook

Feeding squadrons of pilots and hungry officers trained Ray Boutwell for a life in food service.

Ep 9: Feb 10, 2020

Wait, but how did the food get made in World War 2?

In this episode of Service, Navy veteran Ray Boutwell shares how he cooked at a training camp in New Jersey toward the latter part of the war: what equipment they had in the kitchen, what dishes they made regularly, and the difference between ingredients the government supplied and those officers of means could get the cooks to purchase on their own. With government experiments coming into the kitchen, we learn a little about innovation of military cuisine, too!

Ray worked in food service throughout his life, and opened a bakery at ninety-three. This episode is extra fun for cooks and bakers, who might hear themselves in this veteran’s story.

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Steve Lubetkin was the on-site engineer with Ray for this episode. Thank you to Ray’s daughter, Rosana, for her help. Please support Ray’s Boozy Cupcakes!

Visit Ray’s Boozy Cupcakes! Learn more on their Facebook page!

Behind The Episode:

  • Read about Ray Boutwell and Ray’s Boozy Cupcakes at Microsoft News and Today
  • Watch Ray baking in this video at ABC 7.
  • We’ve heard a lot about how the Navy had the best food in the armed forces during the war years, and also about food shortages on the home front. This 1973 remembrance in The New York Times does an excellent job guiding us through what it was like for those at home.
  • John Bistrica was the first to tell us how much he hated mutton. Then Lawson Ichiro Sakai said he never wanted to eat it again after his time in the Army. Check out a little of mutton’s storied history in Much Ado About Mutton, but Not in These Parts By R. W. Apple Jr. in the New York Times, There’s Something About Mutton: A Comeback Story by Sara Ventiera in Food & Wine, World War 2 Troops Ate So Much Mutton it Went Out of Style by Logan Nye on We Are the Mighty, and After World War 2, Mutton Fell Out of Style. Can it Make a Comeback? On NPRs The Salt
  • Or just get this amazing book, Much Ado About Mutton, by Bob Kennard
  • WW2 Research – By the Numbers – at the National WW2 Museum
  • Florida in World War 2 (training bases and the citrus industry) at the Florida Parks Department
  • Fighting for Employment: Veterans in the ’40s and Today by Samuel Greengard on Workforce.com
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