When I was having fun with fandom_stocking this year (or actually, last year), I decided to give one person, who'd indicated an interest in historical recipes, some that were excerpted from two recipe books I happen to own. Because it was for Fandom Stocking, I decided - without looking at AO3's terms of service, more fool I - that I could put it on Archive of Our Own, because the effort was for a fannish event.
The nice folks over at AO3 let me know today that it was a violation of their terms of service, and that I had a week to take it down. I'm embarrassed, because they're quite right (Section H clearly states that recipes are a no-no), and sad that I now have a formal warning on my AO3 account. Hopefully, that will eventually be taken out.
So I've put the recipes here, and will let the person for who I posted them know that they can access them here or on LJ. And perhaps other folks can enjoy the recipes as well. And I've learned something out of the whole thing, so there's that.
Anyhow - enjoy!
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Food From the Past: Recipes From Nova Scotia and Williamsburg, Virginia
These recipes were chosen from my cook books for navaan , who mentioned liking historic recipes, during the 2018 fandom_stocking adventure.
As it happens, I’m originally from Nova Scotia, on Canada’s east coast, and one of the cookbooks we had when I was a teen was “Out of Old Nova Scotia Kitchens.” It carried Acadian recipes, New England Loyalist recipes (the Loyalists came to British-governed eastern Canada after the American War of Independence), recipes from formerly enslaved African Americans who got there via the Underground Railroad, members of Nova Scotia's Mi'kmaq nations, and many more. I have my own copy of the book, and have used some of the recipes, so I thought I’d send along a few of those; the Apple Crisp is really rather good, and at least one of the old-fashioned wine-making and medicinal recipes, just for fun.
I also have “The Williamsburg Art of Cookery,” from Williamsburg, Virginia. Although a lot of the history in the book is uncomfortably redolent of the enslaved people who largely cooked this food, the recipes themselves are of interest, and I thought I’d include one. I find it interesting that my modern, sugar-addicted taste buds always want to add more sugar/sweetening, and more cinnamon, to the old sweet recipes.
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From “Out of Old Nova Scotia Kitchens” by Marie Nightingale. © 1970.
“ Until not too many years ago, rhubarb was used in a spring tonic and given to every member of the household whether he was sick or not. The following recipe is a considerably more pleasant way of serving rhubarb.”
½ C sugar, 4 C rhubarb pieces
½ t salt 1 C water
Mix together the sugar, salt, and cornstarch. Add the rhubarb and water and pour into a greased 9”x9” pan. Place in a 425૦F oven and bring to the boil. Top with the following batter:
2 C flour 3T sugar
½ t salt ¼ shortening
3 t baking powder 1 C milk (approximately)
Combine flour flour, salt, baking powder and 2 tablespoons of the sugar. Cut in the shortening until the consistency of cornmeal. Add milk and mix to make a drop batter. Drop by tablespoons on the hot fruit mixture. And sprinkle with the remaining t ablespoon of sugar. Bake another 20 minutes. Serves 9.
Apple Crisp, or Levi’s Pie
“Apple Crisp served warm and with lots of thick cream is a delicious and easy-to-prepare dessert. We think it is even better when made with the top quality apples from the Annapolis Valley.*”
4-6 medium apples ½ C flour
¾ C rolled oats 1 t cinnamon
¾ C brown sugar ½ C butter
Pare apples and slice thin. Arrange slices in a greased baking dish. Combine dry ingredients and mix well. Cut in the butter. Sprinkle this mixture over the apples. Bake in a moderate oven, 350૦F for 35-40 minutes. Serve warm with whipped cream.
(*I agree about the apples. I grew up in the Annapolis Valley.)
“The method of making honey without the bee’s assistance is said to date back to the 17th century. While gathering the clover, be on the look-out for the four-leafed variety. Should you find one, look well upon it, but do not pick it. Some of the old folks here still believe that seeing a four-leaf clover brings good luck, but picking it brings grief.”
80 blossoms white clover 10 C sugar
40 blossoms red clover 3 C water
5 rose petals (faintly perfumed) ½ t powdered alum.
Combine the sugar, water and alum and boil for 5 minutes. Pour the syrup over the blossoms and rose petals and let stand for 20 minutes. Strain through a cheesecloth and bottle. Store in a dry place.
“In haying time, swinging the scythe was a very thirsty task. Under a clump of evergreen bushes nearby was keppt a jug of Switchel. Nothing, it is said, was so refreshing as this cooling drink.”
1 gallon water 1½ C vinegar
2 C brown sugar 1 t ginger
1 C molasses
Mix all ingredients together. Pour into a jug and hang in the well to cool.
“The German name for this famous Lunenburg dish is ‘Salmagundi” — excellent as an appetizer.” (From kaffyr — my stepdad, who still lives in N.S. and fished and farmed for most of his life, makes Solomon Gundy. It’s yummy in small to moderate quantities.)
½ dozen salt herring 2T pickling spice
2 medium onions ½ C sugar
Remove tails and heads from herring. Clean inside and remove the skin. Cut in pieces about 1” thick and fillet the pieces. Soak in cold water about 24 hours. Squeeze the water from herring Place in a bottle with slices of onion, in alternate layers. In a saucepan, heat the vinegar and add pickling spice and sugar. Let cool; then pour over the herring in the bottles.
From “The Williamsburg Art of Cookery” by Mrs. Helen Bullock © The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation 1938 and 1966
To Make a Veal Glue, or Cake Soup to be Carried in the Pocket
Take a Leg of Veal, strip it of the Skin and the Fat, then take all of the muscular or fleshy Parts from the Bones; boil this Flesh in such a Quantity of Water, and so long a Time, till the Liquor will make a strong Jelly when it is cold: This you may try by taking out a strong Spoonful now and then, and letting it cool. Here it is to be supposed, that though it will jelly presently in small Quantities, yet all the Juice of the Meat may not be extracted; however, when you find it very strong, strain the Liquor through a Sieve, and let it settle; then provide a large Stew-pan, with Water, and some China cups, or glazed Earthen-ware; fill these Cups with Jelly taken clear from the Settling, and set them in a Stew-pan of Water; and let the Water boil gently, until the Jelly becomes as thick as Glue; after which, let them stand to cool, and then turn out the Glue upon a Piece of New Flannel, which will draw out the Moisture; turn them once in six or eight Hours, and put them upon a fresh Flannel, and so to do until they are quite dry, and keep it in a dry warm place: This will harden so much, that it will be stiff and hard as Glue in a little Time, and may be carried in the Pocket without inconvenience. You are to use this, by boiling about a Pint of Water, and pouring it upon a Piece of the Glue or Cake, about the Bigness of a small Walnut, and stirring it with a Spoon till the Cake dissolves, which will make a very strong good Broth. As for the seasoning Part, every one may add Pepper and Salt as they like it, for there must be nothing of that Kind put among the Veal when you make the Glue for any Thing of that Sort would make it mouldy. As we have observed above, that there is nothing of Seasoning in this Soup, so there may be always added what you desire, either of Spices or Herbs, to make it savoury to the Palate; but it must be noted, that all the Herbs used on this Occasion, must be boiled tender in plain Water, and that Water must be used to pour upon the Cake Gravy instead of Simple Water: So may a Dish of good Soup be made without Trouble, only allowing the Proportion of Cake Gravy answering to the abovelaid Direction: Or if Gravy be wanted for Sauce, double the Quantity may be used that is prescribed for Broth or Soup.
(The Lady’s Companion, 1753; Cook Book owned by Miss Anna Maria Dandridge, 1756.)
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